Baylor claims Big 12 title again
Lady Bears down Texas to earn sixth consecutive Big 12 title
WACO, Texas -- For the sixth consecutive year, Baylor claimed the Big 12 Championship crown by downing the University of Texas. The Lady Bears posted a 4-1 win, recording three straight-set singles victories and winning the doubles point, at the Baylor Tennis Center to earn the title on Sunday morning.
“It gets harder every year and I could not be prouder of our team,” head coach Joey Scrivano said. “They did a great job today just competing so hard. Texas really pushed us. They have a fantastic team so it was a tough match.”
For the second match in a row, junior Diana Nakic clinched the winning point for the Lady Bears. She was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player after posting a 3-0 mark in singles and claiming two doubles wins.
Baylor earned the all-important doubles point with wins on courts two and three. Texas’ 54th-ranked tandem of Amanda Craddock and Cierra Gaytan-Leach downed 59th-ranked Nina Secerbegovic and Karolina Filipiak on court one 8-5. When BU’s Diana Nakic and Sona Novakova claimed an 8-4 victory on court three against Juliana Gajic and Maggie Mellow, Baylor’s No. 2 doubles team of Taylor Ormond and Jelena Stanivuk held a 7-4 lead. At that point, Texas’ Krista Damico and Aeriel Ellis won two consecutive games to pull to within 7-6, but Stanivuk served out the match to earn the win and the doubles point, 8-6.
In singles, Secerbegovic, ranked No. 47, made quick work of Mello on court three, taking just 52 minutes to post a 6-0, 6-3 win and give the Lady Bears their second point. The Longhorns’ 26th-ranked Ellis, upset 11th-ranked Novakova at No. 1 singles, 6-2, 6-2, to give Texas its lone point of the contest. Ormond, one of three seniors on the Baylor squad, earned a win at No. 6, downing Cierra Gaytan-Leach, 7-5, 6-4. Needing just one point to win the contest, Nakic had won the first set on court two and raced out to a 5-2 second-set lead. However, UT’s Damico fought back to even the set at 5-5. Nakic held serve and then broke Damico’s serve to preserve the Lady Bear win by a 7-5 score.
“I thought that today, experience helped a lot. We obviously know we can get through and our players have a lot of confidence under the big stage. When the lights come on, our players typically perform and today was no different,” said Scrivano.