RALEIGH, N.C. - No. 20 Tennessee topped Furman, 4-0, Saturday in the opening round of the NCAA Championships at the J.W. Isenhour Tennis Center in Raleigh, N.C.
The Vols, who earned the No. 2 seed at the Raleigh regional, won two doubles matches to take the opening point versus the No. 3 seeded Paladins. Sadie Hammond and Kaitlin Staines, who are ranked ninth nationally, recorded a 6-3 victory over junior Katarina Kozarov and freshman Julia Adams, the 78th-ranked doubles team, in the top-seeded contest, and Tanika McGiffin and Ariadna Riley blanked sophomores Carol Elizabeth Kerman and Georgie Walker, 6-0, at flight three. The flight two match was unfinished, with senior Katty Weymouth and freshman Madison Dillon leading Johanna Silva and Rebeka Mertena, 4-3.
In singles action, Riley defeated Kerman, 6-0, 6-1, at flight five, then Silva held off Dillon, 6-3, 6-3, at number four. Staines, who ranks 124th nationally, clinched the match with a 6-3, 6-4 victory over Weymouth at flight two.
The Paladins led in two of the final three matches. At flight one, Kozarov, who ranks 67th nationally, won the first set over No. 62 Hammond, 6-3, but Hammond had a slight 4-3 advantage in the second set. Adams defeated Mertena, 6-4, in the first set at flight three, while Mertena led the second set, 5-4. In the flight six match up, McGiffin led Walker, 6-4, 4-1.
"It always hurts when the season ends, but I could not be more proud of this team," said Furman head coach Adam Herendeen. "We played at a high level today and it was much closer than the final score. This team is special and they deserve all of the credit for what they have accomplished. They have really raised the bar for our program, and I cannot wait to see what they will accomplish next."
#20 Tennessee 4, Furman 0
May 04, 2019 at Raleigh, N.C. (J.W. Isenhour Tennis Center)
1. #62 Sadie Hammond (TEN) vs. #67 Katarina Kozarov (FUR) 3-6, 4-3, unfinished
2. #124 Kaitlin Staines (TEN) def. Katty Weymouth (FUR) 6-3, 6-4
3. Rebeka Mertena (TEN) vs. Julia Adams (FUR) 4-6, 5-4, unfinished
4. Johanna Silva (TEN) def. Madison Dillon (FUR) 6-3, 6-3
5. Ariadna Riley (TEN) def. Carol Eliz. Kerman (FUR) 6-0, 6-1
6. Tenika McGiffin (TEN) vs. Georgie Walker (FUR) 6-4, 4-1, unfinished
3. Tenika McGiffin/Ariadna Riley (TEN) def. Carol Eliz. Kerman/Georgie Walker (FUR) 6-0
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1); Singles (5,4,2)