The fifth-ranked Georgia women’s tennis team (21-4) made quick work of North Florida (13-7) to open its NCAA Tournament competition, defeating the Ospreys 4-0 on Friday evening at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex.
The Bulldogs will face Baylor in the second round of competition as the Bears defeated 26th-ranked Wake Forest earlier by a 4-2 score. Georgia will look to improve to 12-1 on the year at home and advance to Tulsa, Oklahoma for a shot at a championship with a win on Saturday at 4 p.m. against its Big 12 opponent.
“It was good to see us get the doubles point on the number one court,” said Georgia head coach Jeff Wallace. “I thought singles played well. It was a good match. I thought everyone had some great points. It was a solid first round match for us.”
The Bulldogs took a tight doubles point with victories on the first and second courts. First it was the 81st-ranked duo of Kennedy Shaffer and Silvia Garcia who scored a 6-2 win to set the pace, but North Florida battled with a win on the third court. Ellen Perez and Mariana Gould took the doubles clincher moments later, taking a 6-4 decision after a back-and-forth battle to give Georgia a 1-0 lead in the match.
Caroline Brinson added to Georgia’s lead with a dominant performance on the fourth court, taking a 6-1, 6-1 decision over Luise Intert. Intert entered Friday’s contest with an 11-1 record on the year on the fourth court.
The Bulldogs then closed out the match quickly with wins on the two and five courts. Shaffer beat Gould to the punch with a 6-2, 6-0 win for her team-best 20th dual win of the campaign.
Gould then put a bow on the tournament-opening victory with a 6-0, 6-3 win, her fourth match clincher of the year, to push the Bulldogs on to the next round.
Georgia will face Baylor on Saturday at 4 p.m. for a chance to head to Tulsa, Oklahoma and the NCAA Tennis Championships.
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NCAA WOMEN’S TENNIS TOURNAMENT
REGIONALS – ROUND 1
Dan Magill Tennis Complex
No. 5 Georgia defeats North Florida (4-0)
Order of Finish: Doubles (2,3,1); Singles (4,2,5)
1. #10 Perez/Gould (UGA) def. Hemmerich/Vazquez (UNF), 6-4
2. #81 Garcia/Shaffer (UGA) def. Intert/Gomez (UNF), 6-2
3. Valdez/Calderon (UNF) def. Brinson/Patterson (UGA), 6-3
1. #5 Ellen Perez (UGA) vs. Noemi Hemmerich (UNF), 2-6, 1-5, unfinished
2. #28 Kennedy Shaffer (UGA) def. Michelle Valdez (UNF), 6-2, 6-0
3. #116 Silvia Garcia (UGA) vs. Rafaela Gomez (UNF), 6-1, 2-6, 1-2, unfinished
4. #30 Caroline Brinson (UGA) def. Luise Intert (UNF), 6-1, 6-1
5. Mariana Gould (UGA) def. Quetzali Vazquez (UNF), 6-0, 6-3
6. Laura Patterson (UGA) vs. Mariella Calderon (UNF), 6-3, 4-1, unfinished