Texas A&M sweeps Miami (Fla.) 4-0, advances to semis for first time
URBANA, Ill. -- No. 3-seed Texas A&M continued its historic run, blanking No. 6-seed Miami (Fla.) 4-0 Sunday at the Kahn Outdoor Tennis Complex to advance to the NCAA semifinals for the first time in school history.
The Aggies will take on No. 7-seed UCLA on Monday. The Bruins advanced after upsetting No. 2-seed North Carolina 4-1.
Senior Nazari Urbina capped A&M’s win with her 100th career singles victory as the Aggies improved to 25-3, breaking the school record for most wins in a season. Miami, making its nation-leading fifth consecutive appearance in the quarterfinals, ended its season 23-6.
A&M twins Ines and Paula Deheza were first off in doubles, winning seven consecutive games in a dominating 8-2 victory agianst Brittany Dubins and Stephanie Wagner at the No. 3 line. It was the ninth consecutive victory for the Dehezas, who improved to 19-5 in dual matches.
Minutes later, the Aggies’ 18th-ranked duo of freshman Stefania Hristov and junior Cristina Stancu also completed a convincing 8-2 victory at the No. 1 court, defeating Monique Albuquerque and Clementina Riobueno to clinch the doubles point and give A&M a 1-0 lead heading into singles.
The No. 2 court was on serve with A&M seniors Cristina Sanchez-Quintanar and Wen Sun, ranked No. 49 in the nation, leading Miami’s Melissa Bolivar and Kelsey Laurente 5-4 when play was stopped.
A&M, looking to improve on its 18-1 record when winning the doubles point, got off to a quick start in singles by winning the first set on five of six courts. Miami, however, was making a comeback before Urbina clinched the win.
Stancu, ranked No. 68 in singles, dropped her opening game against 81st-ranked Laurente at the No. 2 line before reeling off six consecutive games to win the first set 6-1. Stancu then jumped out to a 5-2 lead in the second set and went on to win 6-4 to put A&M up 2-0.
Fourth-ranked Sanchez-Quintanar overcame a 5-3 deficit against 60th-ranked Wagner to win the first set 7-5 at the top of the lineup. Sanchez-Quintanar also fell behind in the second and was trailing 4-2 before she won the next four games to complete the 7-5, 6-4 come-from-behind victory, putting A&M ahead 3-0.
Urbina, ranked No. 52 in singles, opened her match by winning the first four games against No. 105 Lina Lileikite at the No. 3 line. Urbina went on to win the first set 6-1 and continued the momentum into the second set, winning the first three games. Urbina went on to build a 5-3 lead and had three match points, but Lileikite came back to win the game to get within 5-4. Lileikite also fought off match point in the next game before Urbina closed out the 6-4 second-set victory.
Aggie freshman Anna Mamalat won her first set 6-4 against Albuquerque at No. 5. Miami was on the verge of splitting, taking a 6-5 lead in the second set before Mamalat tied the score at six to force a tiebreaker. The tiebreaker was knotted at six when Urbina clinched the historic win.
Hristov also was locked in a battle at the No. 6 line. Trailing 5-4 in the first set, Hristov won three consecutive games to close out a 7-5 win in the opening frame. Hristov also made a comeback in the second set, trailing 5-3 before winning the next two games to even the score at five before play was stopped.
Miami won its only set at the No. 4 line, where 102nd-ranked Riobueno held off Ines Deheza 7-5. Riobueno jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the second set and was holding a 4-2 lead when play was stopped.