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ND Women’s Tennis

Irish split pair of ACC matches on southern road trip

| Tuesday, March 24, 2015

No. 32 Notre Dame hit the road this weekend, swinging through the deep South for a pair of ACC matches, defeating Florida State and falling to Georgia Tech by a pair of 4-3 final scores.

After spending time in Florida over spring break preparing for the outdoor portion of their schedule, the Irish (10-6, 4-3 ACC) returned to the Sunshine State to take on the Seminoles (10-6, 3-4 ACC).

They were victorious in Tallahassee, Florida, on Friday afternoon by the closest of margins, securing of 4-3 victory.

The Irish staked an early lead by claiming the doubles point before beginning the singles portion of the afternoon. The No. 21 combination of junior Quinn Gleason and sophomore Monica Robinson shut out their first-position doubles counterparts from Florida State, seniors Daneika Borthwick and Kerrie Cartwright, 8-0. At third-position doubles, sophomores Mary Closs and Jane Fennelly clinched their match over Seminoles senior Mia Vriens and junior Yukako Noi, 8-3, good enough to give the Irish their early lead. Freshman Allison Miller and junior Julie Vrabel dropped their match, 8-3.

The doubles point turned out to be the deciding factor after the Irish split singles with the Seminoles. Florida State won the first three singles matches to take a 3-1 lead, but Miller, Robinson and Closs followed to complete the comeback for Notre Dame.

Sophomore Mary Closs lines up a forehand during Notre Dame's 6-1 loss to No. 3 Stanford on Feb. 6 at Eck Tennis Pavilion.Michael Yu | The Observer

Sophomore Mary Closs lines up a forehand return during Notre Dame’s 6-1 loss to No. 3 Stanford on Feb. 6 at Eck Tennis Pavilion.

After earning their victory against Florida State on Friday, the Irish traveled north to Atlanta to meet up with yet another ACC opponent in Georgia Tech on Sunday.

The Yellow Jackets (6-6, 3-3 ACC) squeaked by the Irish by just a single point, winning by the score of 4-3.

Like they did against Florida State, the Irish came out on top during the doubles portion of the match. While Gleason and Robinson were defeated in a tight 8-6 matchup at No. 1 doubles, both No. 2 and No. 3 doubles were able to secure victories.

At No. 2 doubles, Miller and Vrabel cruised to an 8-4 win over freshman Alexis Prokopuik and junior Natasha Prokhnevska, and at No. 3 doubles Closs and Fennelly pulled out an 8-7(4) tiebreaker over freshman Johnnise Renaud and sophomore Rasheeda McAdoo.

In the singles portion of the afternoon, Notre Dame did not fair as well against the Yellow Jackets as it did against the Seminoles on Friday.

Robinson came away with a point at No. 2 singles by defeating No. 64 freshman Paige Hourigan, 6-3, 4-6, 6-1. Likewise, Vrabel defeated Pokhnevska at No. 3 singles, 6-3, 6-2. Other than those two bright spots, the Irish found no luck against Georgia Tech, with Closs, Miller and Fennelly all falling in the third set.

After splitting their weekend slate against ACC opponents Florida State and Georgia Tech, the Irish will have the week to rest, recover and prepare for another action-filled weekend back at Notre Dame.

The Irish return to action on Friday at 3:00 p.m. when they welcome North Carolina State to campus, and they will also take on non-conference foe Marquette on Sunday at noon. Both matches will take place inside Eck Tennis Pavilion or outside at Courtney Tennis Center.

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