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Lady Flames Defeat Antelopes 4-1, Saturday

February 23, 2019  Tucson, Ariz.  RSS
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Bongart won her singles match in three sets to seal the victory for Liberty.

Bongart won her singles match in three sets to seal the victory for Liberty.

The Liberty Lady Flames tennis team defeated the Grand Canyon Antelopes 4-1 in a neutral-site match at Westward Look Wyndham Grand Resort and Spa, Saturday.

Liberty (3-4) won the match on the strength of the doubles point and singles victories on courts six, four and one. The Lady Flames' victory, in what was the first-ever meeting with the Antelopes, ends a three-match losing streak. Grand Canyon is now 2-7 on the year and has dropped six consecutive matches.

Liberty 4, Grand Canyon 1
Singles Competition
1. Occhipinti, Emilia (GCU) def. Lara Soares (LIBERTYW) 7-6 (7-5), 6-1
2. #107 Ashley Bongart (LIBERTYW) def. Morel, Celia (GCU) 3-6, 6-2, 6-1
3. Maria Medina (LIBERTYW) vs. Buhr, Celina (GCU) 7-5, 4-6, 3-3, unfinished
4. Alexandra Almborg (LIBERTYW) def. Lo Pumo, Martina (GCU) 6-4, 6-2
5. Grace Hashiguchi (LIBERTYW) vs. Infantino, Ludovica (GCU) 5-7, 5-5, unfinished
6. Anna Dollar (LIBERTYW) def. Prudhomme, Autum (GCU) 6-0, 6-1

Doubles Competition
1. Lara Soares/Maria Medina (LIBERTYW) def. Occhipinti, Emilia/Buhr, Celina (GCU) 6-1
2. Grace Hashiguchi/Nasha Ghajar (LIBERTYW) def. Lo Pumo, Martina/Lirzin, Mathilde (GCU) 6-4
3. Morel, Celia/Prudhomme, Autum (GCU) def. Ashley Bongart/Anna Dollar (LIBERTYW) 6-4

Liberty 3-4
Grand Canyon 2-7
Order of finish: Doubles (1,3,2); Singles (6,4,1,2)

Thoughts From Head Coach Jeff Maren
"This was certainly not a pretty match. Gritty is a better description! We found a way to overcome a tough opponent and get the win. Ashley did a great job of coming back from a set down to clinch the match at No. 2."

How It Happened

  • The Lady Flames earned the doubles point with victories on courts one and two. Liberty's top duo, seniors Lara Soares and Maria Medina, won 6-1 over Emilia Occhipinti and Celina Buhr on court one. Soares and Medina have now won a team-best 10 doubles matches on the year (4-1 spring) versus just three losses.
  • Liberty won the doubles point at No. 2 doubles, with sophomores Grace Hashiguchi and Nasha Ghajar coming through with a 6-4 victory of their own against the Antelopes' Martina Lo Pumo and Mathilde Lirzin. Hashiguchi and Ghajar made it 1-0 Lady Flames with the win.
  • Liberty's lead grew to 3-0 with triumphs from senior Anna Dollar (No. 6 slot) and freshman Alexandra Almborg (No. 4 slot) in singles. Dollar took two sets to defeated Autum Prudhomme (6-1, 6-0), and Almborg did the same against Lo Pumo (6-4, 6-2).
  • The Antelopes received their lone point of the day from Occhipinti on court one. She topped Soares 7-6 (5), 6-1.
  • Leading 3-1, Lady Flames No. 2 singles player Ashley Bongart, the 107th-ranked player in the country, outlasted Celia Morel in three sets, 3-6, 6-2, 6-1. Bongart's comeback victory gave Liberty a 4-1 edge and its third victory of 2019.
  • Bouts between Medina (Liberty) and Buhr (Grand Canyon) and Hashiguchi (Liberty) and Ludovica Infantino (Grand Canyon) on courts three and five, respectively, went unfinished.


Next Up

  • Liberty takes on Arizona at 4 p.m. Eastern this afternoon at the Robson Tennis Center on Arizona's campus in what will be the first-ever matchup between the two schools.