April 17, 2014
New Orleans - The Tulane women's tennis team saw its season come to an end this afternoon with a heartbreaking, 4-3, loss to Old Dominion in the second round of the 2014 Conference USA Women's Tennis Championships at the Folkes-Stevens Tennis Center in Norfolk, Va.
In a match that lasted more than five hours, Tulane (5-20) scraped and clawed and gave every ounce of effort before succumbing to the Monarchs on their home courts. The Green Wave led 3-0 in the early stages of singles on the strength of wins by senior and No. 53 ranked Klara Vyskocilova at No. 1 singles over Nikol Hristova (6-0, 6-4), sophomore Meredith Maltby at No. 4 over Melissa Esnal Olguin (7-5, 2-6, 6-1) and sophomore Ipek Birol at No. 2 over Marijana Novakovic (7-5, 4-6, 6-2).
However, Old Dominion's (14-9) Ivana Vukovic posted a 0-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7-5) win over sophomore Jacqui Katz at No. 3 singles to put the Monarchs on the board before No. 5 Nika Khomolovska and No. 6 Faith Atiso posted straight-set wins to send the match to doubles. Khomolovska defeated junior Margaux Hyman, 6-2, 6-3 while Atiso took down junior Emily Dvorak, 6-2, 6-1.
In doubles, Khomolovska and Vukovic staked the Monarchs to the lead with an 8-3 win over Dvorak and Hyman at No. 3 before Novakovic and Atiso clinched the match with an 8-6 win over Birol and Maltby.
"Today was a tough way to end our season," Tulane head coach Terri Sisk said. "I honestly feel that we let this victory slip away because we were literally two points away from the match but were unable to finish strong. We played a very tight match for five and half hours and didn't get the win, but I'm so proud of the team for the entire year. It's been a heck of a year but they pushed through and made me proud.
Vyskocilova completed her senior season with a perfect dual mark of 13-0 at the top spot in the singles line-up. She recorded a 20-6 overall record and won 15 straight singles dating back to last fall. Along the way, she upset two of the nation's Top-25 players and was named to the C-USA All-Academic Team and was selected as the C-USA Women's Tennis Athlete of the Week on Feb. 18.
Vyskocilova will now wait to see if she is selected to the 2014 NCAA Championships as an individual.
No. 1 #53 Klara Vyskocilova (TLN) d. Nikol Hristova (ODU), 6-0, 6-4
No. 2 Ipek Birol (TLN) d. Marijana Novakovic (ODU), 7-5, 4-6, 6-2
No. 3 Ivana Vukovic (ODU) d. Jacqui Katz (TLN), 0-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7-5)
No. 4 Meredith Maltby (TLN) d. Melissa Esnal Olguin (ODU), 7-5, 2-6, 6-1
No. 5 Nika Khomolovska (ODU) d. Margaux Hyman (TLN), 6-2, 6-3
No. 6 Faith Atiso (ODU) d. Emily Dvorak (TLN), 6-2, 6-1
Order of finish: 1, 4, 2, 3, 5, 6
No. 1 Hristova/Olguin (ODU) v Vyskocilova/Katz (TLN), Unfinished
No. 2 Novakoic/Atiso (ODU) d. Birol/Maltby (TLN), 8-6
No. 3 Khomolovska/Vukovic (ODU) d. Dvorak/Hyman (TLN), 8-3
Order of finish: 3, 2