Clemson Takes Down Arizona State, 4-0, in NCAA First Round
ATHENS, GA - The Clemson women’s tennis team cruised to a 4-0 victory over Arizona State (11-10) in the First Round of the NCAA Women’s Tennis Championships in Athens, GA. Clemson (16-9) will play the winner of Friday afternoon’s match between No. 6 Georgia and College of Charleston on Saturday at 3:00 pm. Clemson won the doubles point, and then won three singles matches in straight sets to oust the Sun Devils.
Clemson’s three seniors, Josipa Bek, Keri Wong, and Nelly Ciolkowski hopped in the team vehicle immediately following the match to head back to Clemson in order to walk in the Commencement ceremonies in Clemson. They will return to Georgia on Friday night.
The Tigers improved to 3-1 all-time against the Sun Devils, and 25-18 all-time in NCAA play. In fact, Clemson has now won at least one NCAA Tournament match in each of the past 11 seasons.
Ironically, it was all the non-seniors who took the singles matches to clinch the win. Freshmen Beatrice Gumulya and Romy Kölzer, as well as sophomore Klara Vyskocilova earned straight-set wins on courts four, six, and three, respectively. The three of them dropped a combined five games en route to clinching the victory.
The Tigers claimed the doubles point with an 8-1 win on court three and an 8-6 win on court one to take the 1-0 lead. Monika Kochanova and Kölzer breezed through Nikki Castel and Hannah James at three in their first match together. Bek and Wong, ranked 12th in the nation, were the victors at one doubles, taking down Michelle Brycki and Joanna Smith. It was the duo’s 20th win of the season together, and it moved Bek into a tie with Jody Trucks (1980-84) for Clemson’s all-time wins lead with 223 (104 singles, 119 doubles).
Clemson improved to 13-3 when winning the doubles point, as opposed to a 3-6 mark without it.
As it turned out, however, the team came to play in the singles matches, as Gumulya won her first set in 24 minutes to set the tone. She won her match in just more than an hour to win her 10th straight singles match and improve to 15-6 this season. Overall, she’s won 12 of her last 13 matches, and 20 of her last 21 sets.
Over on court six, Romy Kölzer won her first set, 6-2, against Clare Frye, and won 6-0 in the second set as she claimed her fourth straight match, and is now 17-8 this season.
With Clemson firmly in control, up 3-0, Vyskocilova and Bek were in a race to see who could close out the match. Bek won her first set against Brycki, ranked 92nd, 6-4, while Vyskocilova beat Hannah James, 6-1 in the opening set. Bek and Vyskocilova traded game-for-game, and each had a chance to clinch, up 5-1 in the second. Both got out to 30-0 leads ,and Bek was on match point, up 40-30 when Vyskocilova closed out with a 6-1 win.
#24 Clemson def #34 Arizona State, 4-0
May 11, 2012 - Dan Magill Tennis Center - Athens, GA
NCAA First Round
1. #12 Jospia Bek/Keri Wong (CLEM) def. Michelle Brycki/Joanna Smith (ASU) 8-6
2. Klara Vyskocilova/Beatrice Gumulya (CLEM) vs. Jacqueline Cako/Leighann Sahagan (ASU) 6-7, unfinished
3. Monika Kochanova/Romy Kolzer (CLEM) def. Nikki Castel/Hannah James (ASU) 8-1
1. #46 Keri Wong (CLEM) vs. #15 Jacqueline Cako (ASU) 3-6, 4-2, unfinished
2. Jospia Bek (CLEM) led #92 Michelle Brycki (ASU) 6-4, 5-1, unfinished
3. #77 Klara Vyskocilova (CLEM) def. Hannah James (ASU) 6-1, 6-1
4. Beatrice Gumulya (CLEM) def. Joanna Smith (ASU) 6-0, 6-1
5. Leighann Sahagan (ASU) led Nelly Ciolkowski (CLEM) 1-6, 3-2, unfinished
6. Romy Kolzer (CLEM) def. Clare Frye (ASU) 6-2, 6-0