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Hard-Fought 4-3 Victory Gives Lady Flames 10th Win
The Liberty Lady Flames notched their 10th win of the season, Monday, while also picking up their third Big South Conference victory, as they earned another hard-fought 4-3 win, defeating Gardner-Webb at the Webb Tennis Complex in Boiling Springs, N.C. The Lady Flames have now won five-consecutive matches.
The win gives the Liberty women their third 10-win season under head coach Chris Johnson, who is now in his fifth year at the helm. Overall, Liberty is 10-6, including a 3-1 mark in Big South action. With the loss, Gardner-Webb falls to 9-5 on the season and 1-3 in the Big South.
Seniors Jordan Jenkins and Hannah Fick claimed the sole doubles match for the visitors, with the pair defeating the Runnin' Bulldogs' leading duo, Jenny Lunde and Ioana Oprea, 8-5. Gardner-Webb claimed the other two doubles contests to gain an early 1-0 advantage.
In singles, the Lady Flames performed just as they did in their last match against UNC Greensboro, picking up four singles victories to complete a come-from-behind victory.
While the homestanding Runnin' Bulldogs claimed the No. 1 and No. 6 matches, the Lady Flames remained poised in the middle contests, which all went the distance.
Freshman Cameron Richard displayed a hard-nosed effort, as the Birmingham, Ala., native had to claim each of her sets in a tiebreaker in the No. 2 match, which decided the overall dual. In the opening frame, Richard edged Oprea, 7-6 (7-5). After falling 6-1 in the second, the match went to a deciding set. Richard was forced into a tiebreaker again, as they tied 6-6. The Lady Flame then owned the breaker, taking it by a 6-3 margin to win her seventh-straight singles contest and give Liberty the victory.
At No. 3, another Lady Flame freshman picked it up a notch in the final set to secure another team point. Alexandra Sheeran and Laura Kriett exchanged sets of 6-3, but the Savannah, Ga., native put Liberty on the board once again, blanking her counterpart in the final set, 6-0.
Carol Lobel continued her stellar play this season, notching her 11th singles win of 2011. The junior fell behind after dropping the opening set, 6-1, but roared back in the final two frames, 6-2, 6-0 to secure the win in the No. 4 slot.
Rebekah Jenkins held down the No. 5 spot of Liberty's lineup, adding yet another three-set win for the visitors. Jenkins defeated Ronia Hutterli, despite losing the opening set, 6-3. The Sarasota, Fla., native stepped up to another level in the second and third sets, winning, 6-2, 6-3.
The Lady Flames continue their three-match stretch tomorrow, as they host Commonwealth opponent, Longwood. Start time is scheduled for 3 p.m. Fans will be able to track the match's progress with live scoring.
Liberty 4, Gardner-Webb 3
1. J. Jenkins/Fick (LU) def. Lunde/Oprea (GWU) 8-5
2. White/Hutterli (CSU) def. Richard/Lobel (LU) 8-5
3. Kriett/Gouveia (LU) def. Sheeran/R. Jenkins (LU) 8-1
1. White (GWU) def. Fick (LU) 6-1, 6-2
2. Richard (LU) def. Oprea (GWU) 7-6 (7-5), 1-6, 7-6 (6-3)
3. Sheeran (LU) def. Kriett (GWU) 6-3, 3-6, 6-1
4. Lobel (LU) def. Lunde (GWU) 1-6, 6-2, 6-0
5. R. Jenkins (LU) def. Hutterli (GWU) 3-6, 6-2, 6-3
6. Gouveia (GWU) def. Domenech (LU) 6-3, 5-7, 6-4