COLUMBIA, S.C. — The 15th-ranked LSU women’s tennis team took the first set on four of six singles courts but ultimately fell 4-3 to eight-ranked South Carolina in a battle Saturday afternoon at the Carolina Tennis Center.
Half of LSU’s 10 conference matches this season have had a final score of 4-3. The loss dropped the Lady Tigers to 16-8 and 5-5 in conference play. South Carolina improved to 15-4 and 7-2 in conference.
“We started with such a highly contested doubles point,” LSU co-head coach Julia Sell said. “Even though we lost, this team came out firing in singles. As the day went on, the wind really picked up and I thought some courts handled it better than others. We learned a lot today and will use it this week to improve.”
The match started with a close doubles point. Skylar Kuykendall and Skylar Holloway dropped court three, 6-4, to Ingrid Martins and Rachel Rohrabacher to start play. No. 34 Paige Cline and Hadley Berg took down Joana Vale Costa and Jessica Golovin in a tiebreaker, 7-6 (10-8) to clinch the point that ultimately decided the match.
South Carolina got out to a 2-0 lead after No. 75 Ingrid Martins defeated Golovin 6-1, 6-2 on two.
LSU cut into USC’s lead with a win by Vale Costa over No. 67 Caroline Dailey on the top court 6-1, 6-3. Ryann Foster evened the match at two with a commanding 6-1, 7-5 victory over No. 102 Paige Cline for her fourth ranked win of the spring.
The Gamecocks then took two of the remaining three courts to wrap up the win. After Kuykendall took the first set, Berg took command of the match and ultimately won 3-6, 6-1, 6-2. Ximena Siles Luna then clinched the match for Carolina on court six over Ella Taylor 6-1, 6-3.
Junior Abby Owens secured the Lady Tigers’ third singles point on court five over Brigit Folland. Owens fell in the opening set, 5-7, but took the following sets 6-2, 6-2 for the win.
LSU returns to action for its final home matches of the season beginning at 4 p.m. Friday against Georgia. The Lady Tigers close out the home slate for senior day at 11 a.m. Sunday against Tennessee.
Follow the Lady Tigers on Twitter @lsuwten and @LSUJuliaSell, on Instagram @LSUWTen and on www.Facebook.com/lsuwten.
Tennis Match Results
#8 South Carolina 4, #15 LSU 3
April 2, 2016 at Columbia, S.C.
(Carolina Tennis Center)
1. #19 Joana Vale Costa (LSU) def. #67 Caroline Dailey (USC) 6-1, 6-3
2. #75 Ingrid Martins (USC) def. #48 Jessica Golovin (LSU) 6-1, 6-2
3. Ryann Foster (LSU) def. #102 Paige Cline (USC) 6-1, 7-5
4. #89 Hadley Berg (USC) def. Skylar Kuykendall (LSU) 3-6, 6-1, 6-2
5. Abigail Owens (LSU) def. Brigit Folland (USC) 5-7, 6-2, 6-2
6. Ximena Siles Luna (USC) def. Ella Taylor (LSU) 6-1, 6-3
1. #34 Paige Cline/Hadley Berg (USC) def. Joana Vale Costa/Jessica Golovin (LSU) 7-6 (10-8)
2. Ryann Foster/Abigail Owens (LSU) vs. Brigit Folland/Caroline Dailey (USC) 6-6, unfinished
3. Ingrid Martins/Rachel Rohrabacher (USC) def. Skylar Kuykendall/Skylar Holloway (LSU) 6-4
South Carolina 15-4, 7-2 SEC; National ranking #8
LSU 16-8, 5-5 SEC; National ranking #15
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1); Singles (2,1,3,4,6,5)