RALEIGH, NC - The 13th-ranked Clemson women’s tennis team defeated No. 44 NC State, 6-1, on Saturday at the Dail Outdoor Tennis Center in Raleigh, NC. Clemson (13-6, 8-2 ACC) defeated NC State (13-7, 4-6 ACC) for the 12th straight time, and improved to 40-4 all-time against the Wolfpack.
Clemson wrapped up a top-four finish in the ACC for the 11th time in the last 12 years, clinching a bye in next week’s ACC Tournament. The Tigers have one regular season match left, as they’ll play at Wake Forest on Sunday at noon.
The Tigers have now won nine of their last ten matches going down the stretch, and received great performances up and down the lineup on Saturday.
Clemson took the doubles point with wins on courts one and three. At one, Beatrice Gumulya and Yana Koroleva improved to 6-1 together with their 8-5 win over Joelle Kissell and Taiana Illova. The Tiger tandem was down an early break, but won six of the next nine games for the win. Ani Miao and Liz Jeukeng won 8-1 on court three to clinch the point.
In singles, Koroleva, ranked 18th in the nation, wasted little time in grabbing Clemson’s second point on court one. She defeated senior and 46th-ranked Joelle Kissell, 6-4, 6-0 to give the Tigers a 2-0 lead. Koroleva won her 20th match of the season, and improved to 9-1 in league play, and earned her 12th win against a ranked player.
Next, freshman Tristen Dewar won in straight sets over Nicole Martinez on court six, 6-3, 6-2. Dewar improved her season mark to 16-12, and evened her ACC record at 5-5.
NC State got one back on court two, as No. 115 Tatiana Illova upset Clemson’s Liz Jeukeng, who is ranked 27th in the nation, in straight sets, 6-4, 6-2. Jeukeng had won eight straight matches overall and was 9-0 in ACC play heading into the match.
On courts three, four, and five, Beatrice Gumulya, Ani Miao, and Romy Koelzer were grinding in three-set matches in search of the clinching point.
Koelzer shook off dropping the first set to upend Elisha Hande, 4-6, 6-3, 6-3 to clinch the match. Koelzer is now 6-2 in ACC play and 18-10 overall, and upped her record to 3-2 in three-set matches this season.
Miao then won her match, 6-2, 2-6, 6-1 against Rachel James-Baker to give the Tigers a 5-1 lead. She improved to 6-3 in ACC play in her freshman campaign.
The final point came from Gumulya on court three, as she dropped the first set, but rallied for the 6-7, 6-4, 6-4 win over Chloe Smith. Gumulya improved to 21-4 this season and 18-2 in her career in ACC dual matches.
Clemson plays their final regular season match Sunday at Wake Forest, then will await their official seed for the ACC Tournament, which begins next Thursday in Cary, NC.
#13 Clemson 6, #44 NC State 1
1. Gumulya/Koroleva (CU) def. Illova/Kissell (ST), 8-5
2. Hande/Martinez (ST) def. Dewar/Koelzer (CU), 8-5
3. Jeukeng/Miao (CU) def. Nelson/Smith (ST), 8-1
Order of finish: 1, 3, 2
1. #18 Yana Koroleva (CU) def. #46 Joelle Kissell (ST), 6-4, 6-0
2. #115 Tatiana Illova (ST) def. #27 Liz Jeukeng (CU), 6-4, 6-2
3. #35 Beatrice Gumulya (CU) def. Chloe Smith (ST), 6-7(1), 6-4, 6-4
4. Ani Miao (CU) def. Rachel James-Baker (ST), 6-3, 2-6, 6-1
5. Romy Koelzer (CU) def. Elisha Hande (SU), 4-6, 6-3, 6-3
6. Tristen Dewar (CU) def. Nicole Martinez (ST), 6-3, 6-2
Order of finish: 1,6,2,5,4,