Staff Seals Bulldogs’ Fate

Vanderbilt defeated Mississippi State on Sunday when Holly Staff clinched the match

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Vanderbilt women’s tennis kept the team’s momentum going as Holly Staff and Amy Stevens clinched the doubles point for the early lead, Staff went on to clinch the match in singles and the Dores defeated Mississippi State 6-1 at the Ensworth Tennis Facility on Sunday.

“I thought we all played really well at every position,” said Staff. “Everyone was having a lot of fun out there and that’s what it’s all about!”

The Commodores (8-4, 3-2 SEC) entered Sunday with a victory under their belt, having defeated Ole Miss on Friday. Doubles began with Valeria Ray and partner Bridget Stammel coming up victorious against Chloe Cirotte and Jayna Clemens, 6-1. Staff and Stevens ensured the early lead when they overcame Dharani Niroshan and Alessia Tagliente in a 6-1 victory. Anessa Lee and Celia-Belle Mohr, ranked 26th in doubles, went unfinished to their Bulldog opponents.

Lee led the Dores in singles, finishing first on Court 3 when Cirotte retired due to injury. Mohr defeated her opponent, Alexandra Mikhailuk, in straight sets 6-1, 6-1, giving the Dores a 3-0 lead. Staff clinched the match on Court 5, overcoming Niroshan 6-1, 7-6 (1), and Macavei was right behind her with another straight-set victory on Court 6. No. 60 Stammel fell to Maria Rizzolo in a tiebreak on Court 2. Ray was left on Court 4 and went to three against Athina Pitta, picking up the final point for Vandy and sealing the 6-1 victory over Mississippi State.

1. #26 Mohr/Lee (Vanderbilt) vs. Pitta/Mikhailuk 3-2, unfinished
2. Stammel/Ray (Vanderbilt) def. Clemens/Cirotte 6-1
3. Staff/Stevens (Vanderbilt) def. Niroshan/Tagliente 6-1

1. #9 Mohr (Vanderbilt) def. Mikhailuk 6-1, 6-1
2. Rizzolo (Mississippi State) def. #60 Stammel 6-3, 7-6 (6)
3. Lee (Vanderbilt) def. Cirotte 6-0, 0-1 retired
4. Ray (Vanderbilt) def. Pitta 6-0, 6-7 (5), 1-0 (8)
5. Staff (Vanderbilt) def. Niroshan 6-1, 7-6 (1)
6. Macavei (Vanderbilt) def. Tagliente 7-5, 6-0

Up Next: The Commodores travel to College Station to take on No. 14 Texas A&M on Friday at 5 p.m.; Sunday, Vanderbilt meets LSU in Baton Rouge at 11 a.m.