April 18, 2014
NORFOLK, Va. - Louisiana Tech battled back to even the match at 2-2, but Marshall was able to pull out wins on courts five and six to defeat the Lady Techsters, 4-2, on Friday evening in the Conference USA quarterfinals at the Folkes-Stevens Tennis Center.
With the weather on the cutline just as it was the day before, officials decided to move the match indoors which meant it would start with singles 1-4 instead of doubles.
Being primarily an indoor team, Marshall (14-7) used it to their advantage in ending LA Tech's (15-7) season.
"Playing Marshall indoor, we knew it was going to be a challenge," said head coach Chad Camper. "They are more used to playing inside. The thing about a conference tournament, you can't depend on anything. Nothing is certain. We battled hard, but at the end of the day Marshall played well and just didn't make a lot of mistakes."
Things were looking really good for the Lady Techsters in the early going, being up in the first set on five of the six courts.
The first set of the quarterfinal match came from Jazmin Britos at No. 3 who nailed an ace up the middle on set point to go up 6-3. The freshman then ran away with the second set 6-1 to defeat Kai Broomfield and give LA Tech a 1-0 lead.
At No. 2, Joanna Nalborska was up 5-2 but Marshall stormed back to win five straight games to win the first set 7-5 and then give the Thundering Herd their first point of the match with a straight sets victory by Derya Turhan.
A similar match was being played at No. 4 as Marta Sramkova was up 5-3 in the first set, but the Herd's Anna Pomyatinkskaya rebounded to win 7-6 (4), 6-4.
The sophomore gutted it out though breaking down 5-4 and 6-5, and then overcame a match point in the tiebreaker to win the second set and then cruised in the third set for the victory 2-6, 7-6 (6), 6-2.
"Alexandra really matured today," said Camper. "There were plenty of times where she was down and out in the match and she stayed physically and mentally tough. I think she learned that with those two things just how good of a college tennis player she is."
After knotting the match up at 2-2, Marshall then ripped off a 6-3, 6-3 win at No. 6 by Rachael Morales over Manoela Chiacchio.
Suddenly, Tech found itself down 3-2 with the lone senior Melanie Urvoy at No. 5 being the last hope to send the match into a deciding doubles showdown.
Urvoy dropped the first set, but rallied to win the second set. Once in the third set, the Herd's Karli Timko quickly went up 5-0 and ultimately won the match 6-4, 3-6, 6-2.
"It was a great season," said Camper. "We had some great wins. We had a lot of obstacles to overcome and we overcame them. We were able to come into a very tough conference in C-USA and be competitive right away. With still such a young team, I think this is a great standard for the program and we can only go up from here with higher goals and higher expectations."
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