ATHENS, Ga. -- The top four seeds all were eliminated during Saturday’s NCAA championships quarterfinals action, with the No. 8 Gators earning the biggest victory of the day when they took down top-seeded and host Georgia 4-1 at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex.
Florida played its best doubles matches of the season and needed to against Georgia’s highly ranked tandems and secured the 1-0 lead entering singles action, where the Bulldogs were fueled by an energetic home crowd and won the first set on four of the six courts.Georgia claimed the first singles victory on court No. 2 and evened the team score, but a minute later UF senior Alexandra Cercone polished off Lily Kimbell 6-4, 6-2 and gave the Gators a 2-1 lead.
The next match wasn’t decided for another 47 minutes, as the Gators slowly staged their comeback. Senior Sofie Oyen, freshman Belinda Woolcock and freshman Kourtney Keegan each forced a third set on their respective courts, while Brianna Morgan battled SEC Player of the Year Lauren Herring, taking the first set by breaking the final game.
Morgan finally earned the biggest win of her young career with the straight-set upset on court No. 1 and gave Florida a 3-1 lead.
Oyen was the second of the Gator trio to force a third set and emerged with the clinching heroics, as she posted a 3-6, 6-4, 6-0 win against Maho Kowase in two hours and 22 minutes.