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Yang Delivers Clinching Point in Liberty Win at James Madison
Brittany Yang rallied from a one-set deficit to deliver the clinching point, as the Liberty Lady Flames knocked off the James Madison Dukes, 4-3, on Tuesday afternoon at Hillside Courts.
"I am so proud of our girls," commented Liberty head coach Jeff Maren. "We showed great character after losing the doubles point. Brittany showed such courage in her match. She was down, but never out."
Liberty's fourth win in a row improves its record to 10-7 (6-2 Big South) on the season. The Lady Flames have now won 10 or more matches for the third consecutive season. With the loss, James Madison falls to 7-5 on the year.
The Dukes took the doubles point after collecting wins in the No. 1 and No. 3 positions, marking the first time in four matches that the Lady Flames have not notched the doubles tally. At No. 1, Taylor Pinchoff and Michelle Nguyen downed Liberty's Rebekah Jenkins and Nicola Wellman, 8-5. The Lady Flames' Cameron Richard and Valerie Thong had their six-match winning streak snapped by Jacqueline Palmucci and Ruxandra Andriescu, 8-4, in the No. 3 match.
Yang and Jessie Boda continued to click as a pair at No. 2, winning their 13th match of the season, 8-7 (9-7), over Kara Wirth and Katherine Bulling.
Richard quickly tied the match at one apiece with her second consecutive singles win, 6-2, 6-2, against Palmucci in the No. 2 position. Thong followed with a straight-set victory versus Bulling, 6-3, 6-3, for her fourth straight win and ninth overall on the year.
James Madison took the next two singles tilts to pull ahead, 3-2. Pinchoff outlasted Jenkins, 6-7, 6-3, 6-4, in the No. 1 position, while Douglass downed Liberty's Annisha Domenech, 6-3, 6-4, in the No. 6 spot.
In the No. 3 slot, Wellman dropped a hard-fought first set to Andriescu, 7-5. The Liberty sophomore bounced back with wins in the final two sets, 6-4, 6-1, for her 11th victory of the year, tying the match at three each.
With the contest down to the final singles match (No. 5), Wirth jumped out to a one-set advantage against Yang, 6-3. Yang found herself trailing 5-3 in both the second and third sets, but found a way to pull out wins in each, 7-5, 7-5, clinching the win for the Lady Flames.
Liberty will play its last two home contests of the season this weekend, beginning on Friday against Charleston Southern at 1 p.m. On Saturday, the Lady Flames conclude their home schedule with an 11 a.m. match versus Marshall.
Liberty 4, James Madison 3
1. Pinchoff/Nguyen (JMU) def. Jenkins/Wellman (LU), 8-5
2. Boda/Yang (LU) def. Wirth/Bulling (JMU), 8-7 (9-7)
3. Palmucci/Andriescu (JMU) def. Richard/Thong (LU), 8-4
1. Pinchoff (JMU) def. Jenkins (LU), 6-7, 6-3, 6-4
2. Richard (LU) def. Palmucci (JMU), 6-2, 6-2
3. Wellman (LU) def. Andriescu (JMU), 5-7, 6-4, 6-1
4. Thong (LU) def. Bulling (JMU), 6-3, 6-3
5. Yang (LU) def. Wirth (LU), 3-6, 7-5, 7-5
6. Douglass (JMU) def. Domenech (LU), 6-3, 6-4