LAKE NONA, Fla. - The UConn women's tennis team saw their season come to an end on Wednesday, falling 4-3 to East Carolina on the first day of the American Athletic Conference Championship tournament at the USTA National Campus.
"This was a tough way to end our season today," stated head coach Glenn Marshall. "Our kids really put everything they had into this match and came up just a little short. We got down 3-0 in the match and stormed back to tie it at 3-3. Lizzy, Fitz and Laz all had great days in singles."
The Huskies found themselves down 3-0 to ECU but battled back to tie the match with the deciding No.4 singles match-up coming down to a third set. ECU opened by winning the doubles point as Celia Ruiz and Lisa Hofbauer posted a 6-1 win over Emma Alderman (Hingham, Mass.) and Yelyzaveta Pletnyeva (Vinnitsa, Ukraine) at No.1 to start. They clinched the point at No.3 with Michelle Castro and Annija Veinsteina beating Jacqueline Lazaro (Largo, Fla.) and Shea Flanagan (Overland Park, Kans.).
The Pirates pushed their lead to 3-0 with consecutive wins at No.6 and No.1 singles. The Huskies started their comeback at No.2 where Pletnyeva posted her 23rd win on the season by beating Veinsteina, 6-2 and 6-4.
Lazaro followed with a win at No.5, beating Sarah Sarjoo 6-2 and 6-4. She finished the season winning her fourth-straight match and picked-up her 15th victory. The Huskies pulled even in the match with a Jacquelyn Fitz-Randolph (Tampa, Fla.) win at No.3. After a 6-3 win in the first set, Fitz-Randolph closed out the second set 7-5 leaving the match result up to the outcome of the No.4 match.
UConn's Summer Walker (Conyers, Ga.) beat Castro in the first set of their match, 6-2. Castro answered in the second with a 6-3 win, sending it to a deciding third set. Walker fell behind early but battled her way back to 4-4. Castro would close it out from there, winning 6-4 to send ECU on to the next round on Thursday.
"The last match of the season is always an emotional one for our seniors. I can't say enough about how proud I am of Emma and Shea, from what they have meant to this program, on and off the courts. I will miss them dearly, but we will all cherish the memories and times we had together very much."