ATHENS, Ga.--The Georgia women's tennis team advanced to the second round of the 2013 NCAA Tournament, beating Winthrop 4-0 Saturday afternoon at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex.
The Bulldogs (22-3) will square off with Arizona State (17-5) in the second round Sunday at 2:00 p.m. Georgia will be attempting to advance to its 12th round of 16 since the tournament moved to its current format in 1999.
"I think Winthrop is a great team and we played really well today," said head coach Jeff Wallace. "Doubles was tough, except for court 1. [Kate Fuller and Silvia Garcia] did a really great job today--they've played so great all year. Court two and three were some good matches and we had to fight back to get the doubles point. I think we played high level singles all the way through so it was a great first-round match for us."
Georgia won its 23rd doubles point of the year, and got three quick wins in singles to win advance to the second round and improve to 23-0 in 1st and 2nd round matches held in Athens.
In doubles, the country's top-ranked tandem of Kate Fuller and Silvia Garcia gave Georgia an early advantage in doubles with an 8-1 win over Winthrop's Caitlin Cridland and Ekin Gunaysu. The pair is now 22-2 this year. Lauren Herring and Maho Kowase, ranked 52nd in the country, clinched point for Georgia with an 8-3 win over the Eagles' Alice Garcia and Giovanna Portiolli. The Georgia duo trailed 0-3, but won the final eight games to pick up their fourth doubles point clinch of the season.
Mia King and Ayaka Okuno led 6-5 when their match was suspended.
In singles, Kowase gave Georgia a 2-0 lead with a 6-1, 6-0 victory over Winthrop's Andressa Garcia. Kowase leads Georgia with a 36-8 mark this year. Later, the Bulldogs took a 3-0 lead when Fuller topped Winthrop's Portiolli 6-0, 6-2. Just seconds later, Okuno beat the Eagles' Caitlin Cridland, 6-1, 6-2. It's the second match that the she has clinched this season.
Sixth-ranked Herring, 104th-ranked Garcia and King all led their matches when their matches were suspended.
"I think we were a little too excited at the beginning, but we handled it really well," Kowase said. We had a really great to start to the singles and I'm proud of everyone."
Georgia improves to 4-0 all-time against Winthrop, including 2-0 in the NCAA Tournament. Winthrop ends its season at 18-10
Georgia and Arizona State will meet on Sunday at 2:00 p.m. with a spot in the round of 16 on the line.
Georgia 4, Winthrop 0
1. #1 Kate Fuller/Silvia Garcia (UGA) def. Yasmine Alkema/Andressa Garcia (WIN), 8-1
2. #52 Lauren Herring/Maho Kowase (UGA) def. Alice Garcia/Giovanna Portiollo (WIN), 8-3
3. Mia King/Ayaka Okuno (UGA) vs. Caitlin Cridland/Ekin Gunaysu (WIN), 6-5, unfinished
Order of finish: 1,2
1. #6 Lauren Herring (UGA) vs. Yasmine Alkema (WIN), 6-3, 3-0, unfinished
2. #19 Maho Kowase (UGA) def. Andressa Garcia (WIN), 6-1, 6-0
3. #104 Silvia Garcia (UGA) vs. Alice Garcia (WIN), 6-2, 4-1, unfinished
4. Kate Fuller (UGA) def. Giocanna Portiolli (WIN), 6-0, 6-2
5. Ayaka Okuno (UGA) def. Caitlin Cridland (WIN), 6-1, 6-2
6. Mia King (UGA) vs. Tijana Uzelac (WIN), 6-1, 1-3, unfinished
Order of finish: 2,4,5*