Wake Forest Drops 4-3 Decision to No. 46 Long Beach State
Feb. 23, 2013
By Currie McFayden, Wake Forest Athletic Communications (@WakeTennis)
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - Wake Forest captured the doubles point against No. 46 Long Beach State inside the Indoor Tennis Center on Saturday afternoon, but could not hang on in singles as the squad dropped a closely-contested 4-3 decision.
The Demon Deacons drop to 1-5 on the season with the loss, while the 49ers improve to 8-1 with a perfect 4-0 mark in conference play.
In doubles action, Kathryn Talbert and Kasey Gardiner cruised to their second consecutive victory at the No. 1 position. Facing LBSU's Sarah Cantlay and Klaudia Malenovska, Wake's top doubles team was never truly challenged en route to an 8-4 triumph.
The 49ers struck back at the No. 2 position, though, as Xue Zhang and Andrea Retolaza were narrowly defeated by Karolina Rozenberg and Ebba Unden by a 9-8 (8-6) margin.
Fortunately, the Deacs pulled through at the No. 3 spot thanks to strong play by Brigita Bercyte and Karen Forman. The duo captured a 9-7 win against Hazuki Onaga and Anne-Sophie Willems after battling back from an early deficit, sealing the doubles point for Wake Forest and sending the squad into the singles matches with a 1-0 overall lead.
In singles, Long Beach State notched the first victory to pull even with the Deacs at No. 5, with Rozenberg winning 6-4, 6-0 against Forman. The 49ers did not waste any time in capturing the overall lead either, as Cantlay defeated Retolaza 6-3, 6-2 at the No. 3 spot to give them a 2-1 lead.
Gardiner fought hard for Wake Forest at No. 2, but suffered her first dual loss of the season in a close 7-6 (8-6), 7-5 match against Unden to give Long Beach State a 3-1 overall advantage. Fortunately for the Deacs, Zhang pulled off a critical victory at No. 4, rallying after dropping her opening set. The freshman earned her third consecutive win with a 1-6, 6-3, 6-3 defeat of Eva Rodriguez and put the Demon Deacons right back into the match at 3-2.
The decisive fourth point of the overall match was at No. 6 singles in a contest that featured two tiebreakers. Ultimately, LBSU's Willems defeated the hard-fighting Bercyte 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (7-2) to clinch the match for the 49ers
Despite the decisive point, Talbert opted to play out her match at No. 1 singles, looking to rebound from her defeat against UNCG's Niltooli Wilkins last weekend. The senior did just that, splitting her first two sets before finishing strongly in the third set to earn the 7-5, 5-7, 6-4 victory.
Wake Forest will be back in action on Sunday afternoon as the Deacs host Louisville at the Wake Forest Tennis Complex at 12:00 p.m. The match will be the first in school history between the two squads, but will be a glimpse into the future as the Cardinals will soon become a regular ACC foe for the Demon Deacons.
#46 Long Beach State 4, Wake Forest 3