AUBURN, Ala. - In its final match of the 2013 regular season, the University of Tennessee women's tennis team dropped a 4-1 decision to Auburn at the Yarbrough Tennis Center Sunday.
"Today we didn't play our best tennis," said co-head coach Mike Patrick. "But you have to give Auburn a lot of credit because they fought hard all day long."
With the loss the Lady Vols finish the regular season with an 11-10 record, 7-6 in SEC play which ranked in a tie for third place in the SEC East and Auburn improves to 17-7 overall and 7-6 in conference action.
Tennessee finished the regular season in a tie with Auburn and Vanderbilt at 7-6. Through the SEC tiebreaker process the Lady Vols captured the fifth seed in the tournament and will begin action on Thursday, April 18 at 11 a.m. against the winner of the Mississippi State and Missouri match.
"We finished fifth in the conference in a tough league," said Patrick. We haven't had the most stellar year, but we got through and we stayed competitive the whole time. We are looking forward to getting everyone back and getting ready for NCAAs in a couple of weeks. The SEC Tournament is a great stepping stone where we will be going against best teams in country to put us in position for a NCAA tournament run."
UT swept Mississippi State at home 7-0 back on March 8 but fell to Missouri 4-3 in Columbia at the end of March.
The tiebreaker was determined by the trio's record against the top seeds. All three teams lost to seeds 1-4 but Tennessee and Vanderbilt both defeated the eight-seed South Carolina. By virtue of an upset over Vanderbilt earlier this season, Tennessee gets the No. 5 seed.
Auburn started the day off by capturing the doubles point thanks to wins at No. 2 and 3 doubles. However, Brynn Boren and Kata Szekely defeated the 10th ranked Auburn doubles duo of Pleun Burgmans and Plamena Kurteva by an 8-5 scoring winning four straight games to seal the victory.
The win was Boren and Szekely's 14th over a ranked opponent this year improving their record to 14-4. They also captured their fourth win in seven chances over a top-10 doubles team.
Szekely kept her winning momentum going as she evened the match score at one-all with a 6-2, 6-2 win at No. 2 singles over Emily Flickenger. The victory was her 10th in the last 11 chances.
Auburn recaptured the lead as Tiffany Tavares fell 6-4, 6-0 on court five and just minutes later captured the match as No. 21 Boren dropped a 6-2, 6-4 decision to No. 26 Burgmans on court one followed by a 6-1, 6-2 loss for Caitlyn Williams to Michala Kucharova.
The Lady Vols will begin play in the SEC Tournament this Thursday, April 18 at 11 a.m. against the winner of Wednesday's Mississippi State/Missouri match.
Here is the SEC Championship field:
Mississippi State (12) vs. Missouri (13)
Kentucky (11) vs. LSU (14)
South Carolina (8) vs. Ole Miss (9)
Tennessee (5) vs. 12/13 winner
Arkansas (10) vs. Auburn (7)
Vandrebilt (6) vs. 11/14 winner
Georgia (1) vs. 8/9 winner
Alabama (4) vs. Seed 5/12/13 winner
Texas A&M (2) vs. 10/7 winner
Florida (3) vs. 6/11/14 winner
Tennis Match Results
Tennessee vs Auburn University
Apr 14, 2013 at Auburn, Ala.
(Yarbrough Tennis Center)
#22 Auburn University 4, #24 Tennessee 1
1. #26 Pleun Burgmans (AU) def. #21 Brynn Boren (TENN) 6-2, 6-4
2. #36 Kata Szekely (TENN) def. Emily Flickinger (AU) 6-2, 6-2
3. Michala Kucharova (AU) def. Caitlyn Williams (TENN) 6-1, 6-2
4. Jen Pfeifler (AU) vs. Mimi Fotopoulos (TENN) 6-4, 1-3, unfinished
5. Jackie Kasler (AU) def. Tiffany Tavares (TENN) 6-4, 6-0
6. Plamena Kurteva (AU) vs. Jesse Grace (TENN) 6-1, 3-4, unfinished
1. #4 Brynn Boren/Kata Szekely (TENN) def. #10 Pleun Burgmans/Plamena Kurteva (AU) 8-5
2. Emily Flickinger/Jackie Kasler (AU) def. Mimi Fotopoulos/Sarah Toti (TENN) 8-2
3. Jen Pfeifler/Paulina Schippers (AU) def. Caitlyn WIlliams/Jesse Grace (TENN) 8-6
Tennessee 11-10, 7-6 SEC; National ranking #24
Auburn University 17-7, 7-6 SEC; National ranking #22
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (2,5,1,3)