Deacs Downed by Winthrop 4-3
Feb. 8, 2013
By Currie McFayden, Wake Forest Athletic Communications (@WakeTennis)
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - For the second straight match, Wake Forest fell in heartbreaking fashion, dropping a tight 4-3 decision to Winthrop at the Wake Forest Tennis Complex on Friday afternoon.
The Demon Deacons fell to 1-2 on the season, while the Eagles improved to 2-3 with the victory.
Winthrop rushed out to quick leads in each of the three doubles matches and ultimately claimed the first point by picking up wins at the No. 2 and No. 3 positions. Xue Zhang and Karen Forman fell 8-4 to Alice Garcia and Giovanna Portioli at the No. 2 spot, while Andrea Retolaza and Brigita Bercyte dropped an 8-1 decision against Caitlin Cridland and Ekin Gunaysu.
Alkema, the No. 95 singles player in the nation, got the Eagles off to a quick start at No. 1 singles by knocking off Talbert 6-1, 6-3. The Deacs responded, however, by posting their first point of the day courtesy of Forman at the No. 5 spot. The sophomore dropped Winthrop's Cridland 7-5, 6-4 to pull Wake Forest within a point.
The next pair of matches to finish saw the sides exchange points once again. Alice Garcia defeated Retolaza at No. 3 singles 7-6, 2-6, 6-1, but Bercyte struck back at the No. 6 position, downing Gunaysu 6-0, 2-6, 7-6 to make the overall score 3-2 in the Eagles' favor at that point.
No. 4 singles ultimately proved to be the decisive match. Zhang powered her way to victory in the opening set, but could not maintain her momentum over the course of the match, falling 4-6, 6-4, 6-0 against Portioli, who clinched the match for Winthrop.
Despite the overall match being decided, Gardiner played her way out at the No. 2 spot, emerging victorious after a grueling three-set duel with Andressa Garcia. The freshman split the first two sets with her opponent before finally coming through in the end with a very hard-fought 6-4, 5-7, 6-4 win to remain perfect in singles this spring.
Wake Forest will be back in action tomorrow morning at 9:00 a.m. as the Deacs host No. 47 Virginia Commonwealth. The Rams will be the first ranked opponents that the Deacons will face this season, and the match will be held at the Wake Forest Tennis Complex.
Winthrop 4, Wake Forest 3