WACO – Tarleton battled back from doubles defeats in the first two rounds of the Lone Star Conference Championship Tournament to advance to the league’s title match for the fifth time in program history.
The TexAnns will face MSU Texas tomorrow at 2 p.m. in the championship.
Match 1: No. 34 Tarleton 4, Cameron 1
After a lengthy weather delay that forced a nearly 24-hour delay, Tarleton prevailed over Cameron with four singles victories in the Lone Star Conference Tournament quarterfinals in Waco Friday.
The teams took the court at 2 p.m. yesterday and Cameron was victorious in each of the top two doubles matches, giving the Aggies a 1-0 edge. Nathalie Ulander and Shelby Fillingame were on top 5-4 in the No. 3 position, but Cameron’s nationally-ranked doubles teams in the No. 1 and 2 spots prevailed.
Then the rain set in and forced the conference to halt the matches until today at 11:30 a.m.
The extra night of rest proved to be just what the TexAnns needed as Tarleton took four singles matches to clinch the game and move into the LSC Tournament semifinal round against Angelo State.
Sherine Salem and Ulander put the first two Tarleton points on the board with wins in the No. 3 and 5 positions, respectively. Neetika Sud, after a quick 6-1 win in the first set of the No. 2 match, battled to hold on to a 7-5 win and put the team in position to clinch with a 3-1 advantage.
Alicia Barbaroux polished off the victory by knocking off the nation’s No. 7-ranked singles player – Sarah Frendo – in a rematch of a thriller in Stephenviller earlier this season. Barbaroux won the first set 6-4 and then persevered to win a 7-5 nailbiter in the second to complete the win for Tarleton.
The complete results are as follows:
- #30 Alisa Savina/Rebeka Velasova (CU) def. Alicia Barbaroux/Neetika Sud (TSU) 6-1
- #33 Sara Petric/Sarah Frendo (CU) def. Sherine Salem/Faustine Palatte (TSU) 6-3
- Melany Opolz/Pilar Jaurena (CU) vs. Nathalie Ulander/Shelby Fillingame (TSU) 4-5, unfinished
- Alicia Barbaroux (TSU) def. #7 Sarah Frendo (CU) 6-4, 7-5
- Neetika Sud (TSU) def. Rebeka Velasova (CU) 6-1, 7-5
- Sherine Salem (TSU) def. Sara Petric (CU) 6-2, 6-2
- Alisa Savina (CU) vs. Faustine Palatte (TSU) 4-6, 7-5, 3-1, unfinished
- Nathalie Ulander (TSU) def. Melany Opolz (CU) 6-1, 6-1
- Pilar Jaurena (CU) vs. Shelby Fillingame (TSU) 4-6, 6-4, 1-4, unfinished
Match 2: No. 34 Tarleton 4, No. 18 Angelo State 2
In the nightcap, Tarleton shocked the conference by upending the top-seeded Angelo State Rambelles to advance to the Lone Star Conference Tournament Championship match for the fifth time in program history.
This is Tarleton’s fifth trip to the league title match since debuting in the championship match in 2008. The TexAnns went to the tournament’s finale in back-to-back seasons in 2008 and 2009. Tarleton last qualified for the final match of the tournament in 2017 and is still in search of its first tournament title.
In a repeat performance from the quarterfinals, Tarleton found itself trailing 1-0 after doubles.
Tarleton dropped the top-seeded match of singles to fall behind 2-0 quickly in the match, similar to last week’s regular season finale against the Rambelles, but the TexAnns answered in a big way.
Nathalie Ulander got Tarleton on the board with a 6-3, 6-3 win in the No. 5 spot and then Neetika Sud, who dropped a heartbreaker in her last meeting with Angelo State, exacted her revenge over Ena Ovcina with a 6-4, 6-4 win the No. 2 spot to tie the match.
Shelby Fillingame put Tarleton on top with a crucial 6-3, 6-4 win in the No. 6 position and then Sherine Salem capped off the win with the TexAnns’ fourth straight point and a 7-6, 6-4 win in the No. 3 spot.
The complete results are as follows:
- Valentina Gonzalez/Ena Ovcina (ASU) def. Alicia Barbaroux/Neetika Sud (TSU) 6-1
- Zoe Gubbels/Virginie Becht (ASU) vs. Sherine Salem/Faustine Palatte (TSU) 5-3, unfinished
- Maria Delgadillo/Lucie Maitrot (ASU) def. Nathalie Ulander/Shelby Fillingame (TSU) 6-4
- #12 Valentina Gonzalez (ASU) def. Alicia Barbaroux (TSU) 6-2, 6-1
- Neetika Sud (TSU) def. Ena Ovcina (ASU) 6-4, 6-4
- Sherine Salem (TSU) def. Maria Delgadillo (ASU) 7-6, 6-4
- Zoe Gubbels (ASU) vs. Faustine Palatte (TSU) 2-6, 6-4, unfinished
- Nathalie Ulander (TSU) def. Virginie Becht (ASU) 6-3, 6-3
- Shelby Fillingame (TSU) def. Lucie Maitrot (ASU) 6-3, 6-4
Tarleton will take on MSU Texas tomorrow in Waco at 2 p.m. for the LSC Tournament title and an automatic berth in the NCAA regional tournament.