COLUMBUS, GA – Tenth-ranked and third-seeded Francis Marion University swept the three doubles matches en route to a 5-1 win over 29th-ranked and sixth-seeded Wingate University, Sunday afternoon (April 29) in the semifinals of the NCAA Division II Southeast Regional #2 women's tennis tournament at the Mary V. Blackmon Tennis Center.
The Patriots, now 18-3, advance to the regional title match on Monday at 2 p.m. against host Columbus State University. The seventh-ranked and second-seeded Cougars blanked 30th-ranked and seventh-seeded Georgia College 5-0 in Sunday's other semifinal. The regional champion advances to the Division II Sweet Sixteen, May 16-19, in Louisville, Ky.
Senior Jitka Gavdunova and junior Mona Blauen earned FMU's first point with an 8-1 win at No.1 doubles. The pair, ranked seventh nationally, improves to 19-2 on the season. Freshman Julia Graf and junior Tereza Baranova followed with an 8-2 victory at No.2 doubles, while junior Kerry Hall and sophomore Kimberley Hurter completed the sweep with a hard-fought 8-5 decision at the third doubles position.
Gavdunova, ranked 11th among Division II singles players, quickly gained the Patriots' fourth point with 6-0, 6-0 victory at the top singles spot. The two-time All-American is now 18-2 in singles competition this season and 71-8 for her career.
Wingate freshman Tiffany Williams defeated FMU sophomore Caitlin Siney 6-3, 6-1 at the No.6 singles flight to cut the deficit to 4-1. However, Graf then provided the decisive point with a 6-0, 6-2 victory at No.5 singles.
Wingate ends its season 18-5. The Patriots have beaten the Bulldogs 10 straight times dating back to 1998.
Women's Tennis Match Results 2012 NCAA II Tournament (semifinals - Southeast Region Bracket 2) Apr 29, 2012 at Columbus, GA #10 Francis Marion University 5, #29 Wingate 1 Singles competition 1. #11 Jitka Gavdunova (FMUW) def. Ali Evers (WIN) 6-0, 6-0 2. #21 Mona Blauen (FMUW) vs. Becca Thomas (WIN) 5-6, unfinished 3. #43 Tereza Baranova (FMUW) vs. Olivia Poole (WIN) 5-4, unfinished 4. Kimberley Hurter (FMUW) vs. Morgan Winston (WIN) 4-6, unfinished 5. Julia Graf (FMUW) def. Kelli Ferguson (WIN) 6-0, 6-2 6. Tiffany Williams (WIN) def. Caitlin Siney (FMUW) 6-3, 6-1 Doubles competition 1. #7 Jitka Gavdunova/Mona Blauen (FMUW) def. Ali Evers/Becca Thomas (WIN) 8-1 2. Tereza Baranova/Julia Graf (FMUW) def. Olivia Poole/Tiffany Williams (WIN) 8-2 3. Kerry Hall/Kimberley Hurter (FMUW) def. Morgan Winston/Kelli Ferguson (WIN) 8-5 Match Notes: Wingate 18-5; National ranking #29; Regional ranking #5 Francis Marion University 18-3; National ranking #10; Regional ranking #3 Order of finish: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (1,6,5) SEEDS: #6 Wingate vs. #3 Francis Marion