Top-Seeded Duke Claims ACC Women’s Tennis Championship
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – The Duke Blue Devils completed a perfect run through the Atlantic Coast Conference with a 4-2 win over rival North Carolina in Sunday’s ACC Women’s Tennis Championship finale.
In a title match played at the Wake Forest Tennis Center due to heavy rain at Cary Tennis Park, the Blue Devils extended a pair of conference records by claiming their 17th ACC Women’s Tennis Championship and their eighth under current head coach Jamie Ashworth.
Freshman Beatrice Capra, the ACC Player and Freshman of the Year, added to her list of accolades by being named the Championship’s Most Valuable Player. Capra scored one of four Duke singles victories on Sunday, as the top-seeded Blue Devils (25-2) regrouped after dropping the doubles point.
Capra scored a 6-0, 6-4 win over Lauren McHale on the No. 1 court. The match followed Duke teammate Rachel Kahan’s 6-1, 6-1 victory over Shinann Featheston at No. 3.
With the match knotted at 2-2, Duke finally put the Tar Heels down with three-set wins at No. 4 and No. 6. Hanna Mar turned back UNC’s Caroline Price, 6-2, 4-6, 6-1, and Monica Turewicz rallied for a 6-7 (3), 6-3, 6-2 win over Tessa Lyons at No. 6.
Second-seeded UNC (22-6) claimed the early edge by taking the doubles point. The nationally third-ranked doubles team of Featherston and McHale topped Duke’s Mary Clayton and Ester Goldfeld 8-3 in the decisive match on the No. 1 court. The win by Featherston and McHale came after UNC’s No. 3 team of Price and Gina Suarez-Malaguti defeated Annie Mulholland and Mar by an 8-1 score at No. 3, and Duke’s No. 2 team of Capra and Kahan scored an 8-5 win over Hemm and Tessa Lyons.
The Blue Devils quickly regained the momentum when singles play began, with the straight-set wins by Kahan and Capra setting the tone. UNC’s Zoe DeBruycker’s 6-1, 3-6, 7-6 (5) victory over Goldfeld at No. 2 evened the match before the wins by Mar and Turewicz lifted the Blue Devils.
Both Duke and UNC will now await announcement of NCAA Women’s Division I Tennis Championship selections and pairings. The field for the 64-team competition will be announced Tuesday, May 1, at 5:00 p.m., live on NCAA.com. The announcement of those selected for individual and doubles competition will be made after 6 p.m. on Wednesday, May 2, and will also be carried by NCAA.com.
A league record-tying nine Atlantic Coast Conference teams, including seven of the 16 national seeds, participated in the 2011 NCAA Women's Division I Tennis Championship. Fifteen players from the conference were chosen for individual competition, along with nine ACC doubles teams.
No. 1 Duke 4, No. 2 UNC 2
1. Beatrice Capra (DU) def. Lauren McHale (NC) 6-0, 6-4
2. Zoe DeBruycker (NC) def. Ester Goldfeld (DU) 6-1, 3-6, 7-6 (5)
3. Rachel Kahan (DU) def. Shinann Featherston (NC) 6-1, 6-1
4. Hanna Mar (DU) def. Caroline Price (NC) 6-2, 4-6, 6-1
5. Mary Clayton (DU) vs. Gina Suarez-Malaguti (NC) 6-3, 5-7, 6-5 DNF
6. Monica Turewicz (DU) def. Tessa Lyons (NC) 6-7 (3), 6-3, 6-2
1. Featherston/McHale (NC) def. Clayton/Goldfeld (DU) 8-3
2. Capra/Kahan (DU) def. Haley Hemm/Lyons (NC) 8-5
3. Price/Suarez-Malaguti (NC) def. Annie Mulholland/Mar (DU) 8-1
Records: Duke 25-2; UNC 22-6
National Rankings: Duke #2; North Carolina #8
Order of Finish: Doubles (3,2,1*), Singles (3,1,2,4,6*)