EVANSTON, Ill. - The No. 10 Northwestern women's tennis team jumped out to an early lead and never looked back as it posted four straight team points on its way to a 5-2 victory over the No. 19 Notre Dame Fighting Irish Sunday evening at Combe Tennis Center.
The Irish (5-3) surrendered the first point of the singles portion of the competition at the No. 5 court as Northwestern's Linda Abu Mushrefova defeated Molly O'Koniewski, 6-3, 6-1. The Wildcats (5-3) extended their lead to 3-0 after Veronica Corning recorded a 6-4, 6-1 triumph over Jennifer Kellner at the No. 2 court.
Northwestern claimed their fourth straight point and sealed the victory over the Irish when Alicia Barnett defeated Julie Sabacinski, 6-3, 6-1, at six.
Competing at the No. 1 singles spot, No. 74 ranked Britney Sanders put Notre Dame on the board with her 7-5, 6-4 victory over No. 41 Kate Turvey. Chrissie McGaffigan also picked up a win for the Irish with her 6-3, 7-6 (7-4) defeat of Brittany Wowchuk at four.
No. 83 ranked Belinda Niu rounded out the scoring for the Wildcats after she posted a 4-6, 6-4, 1-0 (10-2) victory over Quinn Gleason.
The Irish found themselves in a hole early as the No. 1 doubles pairing of Northwestern's No. 15 ranked Mushrefova and Hamilton defeated Notre Dame's No. 30 ranked Sabacinski and Sanders by a score of 8-6.
At the No. 2 doubles court, Kellner and McGaffigan, who won the doubles point for the Irish during Friday's match against Purdue, turned in another solid performance as they overcame Corning and Barnett 8-6 to tie the doubles segment at 1-1.
Niu and Turvey gave the Wildcats the early lead in the dual competition with a 9-8 (7-5) tie-beak win over Gleason and Vrabel at the No. 3 doubles court.
The Irish will return to action at 5 p.m. Friday, February 22 when they return home to face No. 18 Baylor.
#10 Northwestern 5, #19 Notre Dame 2
1. #15 Linda Abu Mushrefova/Nida Hamilton (NU) def. #30 Julie Sabacinski/Britney Sanders (ND) 8-6
2. Jennifer Kellner/Chrissie McGaffigan (ND) def. Veronica Corning/Alicia Barnett (NU) 8-6
3. Belinda Niu/Kate Turvy (NU) def. Quinn Gleason/Julie Vrabel (ND) 9-8 (7-5)
Order of Finish: 1,2,3
1. #74 Britney Sanders (ND) def. #41 Kate Turvy (NU) 7-5, 6-4
2. Veronica Corning (NU) def. Jennifer Kellner (ND) 6-4, 6-1
3. #83 Belinda Niu (NU) def. Quinn Gleason (ND) 4-6, 6-4, 1-0 (10-2)
4. Chrissie McGaffigan (ND) def. Brittany Wowchuk (NU) 6-3, 7-6 (7-4)
5. Linda Abu Mushrefova (NU) def. Molly O'Koniewski (ND) 6-3, 6-1
6. Alicia Barnett (NU) def. Julie Sabacinski (ND) 7-5, 6-4
Order of Finish: 5,2,6,1,4,3