EVANSTON, Ill. - Northwestern claimed an NCAA regional title for the 10th-consecutive year as the Wildcats defeated Baylor 4-2 Saturday afternoon at Combe Tennis Center.
NU advances to Urbana, Ill., where it will compete in the round of 16 at 4 p.m. Friday against Miami (Fla.). The Wildcats defeated the Hurricanes 4-2 in Charlottesville, Va., at the ITA Indoor Team Championships on Feb. 10.
Saturday's matchup between NU and the Bears was the second of the year between the teams. Back on Feb. 24 in Evanston, Northwestern notched a 4-1 victory and was looking for more of the same on this afternoon.
The Wildcats surged out to the early advantage in doubles play, going up a break at Nos. 2 and 3. The pairing of Alicia Barnett and Veronica Corning thoroughly dominated Kiah Generette and Alex Leatu, posting an 8-2 victory for their 13th-consecutive win.
Baylor Match Highlights & Postmatch Interviews
At No. 3, Belinda Niu and Kate Turvy maintained their early break throughout and then got another one late as they clinched the doubles point for NU with an 8-3 win over Jordaan Sanford and Alex Clay.
Each team managed to win three opening sets in singles play. The Bears would even the match at 1-1 when 10th-ranked Ema Burgic completed a 6-0, 6-2 win over Corning at No. 1.
Baylor briefly took the match lead when Sanford took down Niu 6-2, 6-1 at No. 3, but minutes later Hamilton completed her 6-0, 6-2 victory over Leatu at No. 6, making it 2-2.
Meanwhile, Mushrefova was locked in a close battle with Generette at the No. 4 spot. The NU senior was tied 4-4 with Generette in her first set before breaking her serve and then holding to win 6-4. She was then able to close things out in the second, 6-3, bringing Northwestern within one victory of the match win.
Just moments later, 57th-ranked Turvy finished off Victoria Kisialeva 6-3, 6-3, giving the Wildcats their 10th-straight trip to the round of 16.
#11 Northwestern 4, #20 Baylor 2
1. #10 Ema Burgic (BAY) def. Veronica Corning (NU) 6-0, 6-2
2. #57 Kate Turvy (NU) def. Victoria Kisialeva (BAY) 6-3, 6-3
3. Jordaan Sanford (BAY) def. Belinda Niu (NU) 6-2, 6-1
4. Linda Abu Mushrefova (NU) def. Kiah Generette (BAY) 6-4, 6-3
5. Alicia Barnett (NU) vs. Maria Biryukova (BAY) 4-6, 5-5, unfinished
6. Nida Hamilton (NU) def. Alex Leatu (BAY) 6-0, 6-2
Order of finish: 1, 3, 6, 4, 2*
1. #4 Victoria Kisialeva/Ema Burgic (BAY) def. #14 Nida Hamilton/Linda Abu Mushrefova (NU) 7-4
2. Alicia Barnett/Veronica Corning (NU) def. Kiah Generette/Alex Leatu (BAY) 8-2
3. Belinda Niu/Kate Turvy (NU) def. Jordaan Sanford/Alex Clay (BAY) 8-3
Order of finish: 2, 3*