Gators eliminate VU from SEC Tourney

STARKVILLE, Miss. – Third-ranked Florida eliminated the No. 18 Vanderbilt Commodores, 4-1, Friday evening at the A.J. Pitts Tennis Centre in the quarterfinals of the 2013 SEC Tournament.8835717.jpeg

The No. 6 seed Commodores fell to 15-11 overall on the season, while the third-seeded Florida Gators improved to 20-2 and will play Texas A&M on Saturday in the semifinals.

“We played a great doubles point again to win the doubles point. The improvement of our doubles over the course of the spring has been fantastic to watch,” said Vanderbilt head coach Geoff Macdonald. “In singles, Florida is just so hard to put out. They are a great team, and hats off to them.”

For the second time this season, the Commodores were able to take a 1-0 lead after doubles against the Florida Gators. Ashleigh Antal and Marie Casares made quick work of Alexandra Cercone and Caroline Hitimana, 8-3, in the No. 2 doubles spot. After Florida’s Danielle Collins and Olivia Janowicz defeated Frances Altick and Georgina Sellyn, 8-2, at No. 3, the point would come down to the top position.

The 10th-ranked Commodore pair of Courtney Colton and Lauren Mira would deliver an 8-6 win over the 22nd-ranked duo of Lauren Embree and Sofie Oyen to clinch doubles. It is the second time this season Colton and Mira downed the Gator doubles team.

“I thought in No. 1 doubles Lauren (Mira) and Courtney (Colton) played a great match to beat a really good team with Lauren Embree and Sofie Oyen,” Macdonald said. “I thought Casares and Antal played fantastic. I’ve been waiting for them to break out because I know how good they are.”

Florida evened the match after Janowicz defeated Antal in No. 5 singles, 6-1, 6-2. The loss dropped Antal to 23-9 on the season.

Cercone’s win in the No. 3 position over Sellyn, 6-3, 6-2, gave Florida a 2-1 lead. Embree tacked on another point for Florida after defeating Mira in No. 1 singles, 6-2, 6-2.

The Gators clinched the win after Hitimana downed Altick in straight sets, 6-4, 6-3, at the No. 6 spot.

Vanderbilt will take the court next in NCAA Regional action beginning May 10-12 at campus sites to be announced after conference tournaments.

Singles Results
1. No. 1 Lauren Embree (UF) def. No. 59 Lauren Mira (VU) 6-2, 6-2
2. No. 15 Sofie Oyen (UF) vs. Courtney Colton (VU) 6-2, 3-6, 1-2, unfinished
3. No. 54 Alexandra Cercone (UF) def. No. 91 Georgina Sellyn (VU) 6-3, 6-2
4. No. 95 Brianna Morgan (UF) vs. Marie Casares (VU) 6-2, 4-6, 2-1, unfinished
5. Olivia Janowicz (UF) def. Ashleigh Antal (VU) 6-1, 6-2
6. No. 123 Caroline Hitimana (UF) def. Frances Altick (VU) 6-4, 6-3

Doubles Results
1. No. 10 Colton/Mira (VU) def. No. 22 Embree/Oyen (UF) 8-6
2. Antal/Casares (VU) def. Cercone/Hitimana (UF) 8-3
3. Collins/Janowicz (UF) def. Altick/Sellyn (VU) 8-2

Order of finish
Singles: 5,3,1,6
Doubles: 2,3,1