WACO, Texas – The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi women's tennis team ended a historic season today, falling 4-0 to No. 13 ranked Baylor, at the Becky & Claude Lindsey Indoor Courts in the opening round of the NCAA Championships. The match was moved indoors prior to the start of doubles play due to heavy rain showers. The Islanders made history as the first Islanders women's tennis team (22-6, 11-1 SLC) to compete in the NCAA Tournament and ended their incredible season with a program-best 22 wins.
"Baylor simply was too physical and well coached to beat indoors tonight," Director of Tennis Steve Moore said. "I can't put into words of how proud I am of the character and the heart of this team and the amazing things they accomplished this year because of their amazing character and courage. The four seniors we lose are four special girls as I have ever coached. The heart the freshmen and the sophomores showed was just amazing.
"This was a season that was made into an absolute historic amazing season by the character of these girls. This was a group I'll never forget. Every team's season except for one comes to an end at some point and for us it was the end to this amazing season. It was only fitting it was to the Big 12 Champions and one of the best teams in the country."
Baylor (25-6, 10-0 Big 12) struck early with a 1-0 lead after garnering a highly competitive doubles point on courts one and three. The freshman-senior duo of Stefania Nicolae and Kerry Galhos dropped an 8-0 loss to the No. 84 ranked pair of Blair Shankle and Alex Clay in No. 3 doubles. The Islanders battled on the remaining courts with the sophomore tandem of Maider Martin and Celia Rodriguez going neck-and-neck with Ema Burgic and Kiah Generette in No. 2 doubles. Martin and Rodriguez took an early 2-1 lead before falling behind 6-3. The Islanders rallied back to win three straight games and pull within one before Baylor garnered the next game to push ahead 7-5. The Lady Bears then clinched the doubles point in No. 1 doubles after Sandra Burges and Judit Vives lost a close 8-5 match to Victoria Kisialeva and Jordaan Sanford. The Lady Bears built an early 4-1 deficit before the Islanders clawed their way back to make it 7-5. Baylor won the next game to clinch a tight point.
In singles play, the Lady Bears won three straight singles matches to clinch the match. Galhos dropped just her second match of the season in No. 6 singles, falling 6-0, 6-1 to Clay. In just her first season, the freshman tallied a 17-4 record. Baylor tacked on their third point of the match in No. 1 singles, after Nicolae dropped a straight-set match to No. 40 ranked Generette. The senior fell 6-0, 6-0, to end her career second all-time in Islanders singles wins. Baylor then clinched the match with a 6-0, 6-0 win in No. 2 singles. Vives fell to No. 81 ranked Burgic in just her second loss of the season. The loss snapped a 13-match win streak for Vives as she ends her first season with an overall 19-2 mark, including a 7-1 record at No. 2 singles.
The Islanders earned their first appearance to the NCAA Tournament after clinching their first Southland Conference Tournament Championship. The Islanders secured their first Southland regular-season title and won 16 of their last 18 matches.
Senior captains Burges and Nicolae have had a storied career in their four years as an Islander. Burges is the all-time singles win leader in Islanders women's history with a program-best 62-21 record, while Nicolae is right behind Burges with a career mark of 53-27. This season, Nicolae stepped into the No. 1 slot and battled each point with intensity while Burges settled into the No. 5 slot and won her last seven matches for a personal season-best record of 21-5.
The Islanders men's team (19-9, 6-0 SLC) will return to the championships for the second consecutive year and the fifth time in the last seven years on Saturday, May 10, at 2 p.m. The Islanders will also face host Baylor (23-5, 4-1 Big 12), the Big 12 Champions, in the Baylor Regional at the Hurd Tennis Center. For all the information check out the NCAA Tournament Central Page HERE.
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Tennis Match Results
Texas A&M - Corpus Christi vs. Baylor
5/9/2014 at Waco, Texas
#13 Baylor 4, Texas A&M - Corpus Christi 0
1. #40 Kiah Generette (BU) def. Stefania Nicolae (AMCC) 6-0, 6-0
2. #81 Ema Burgic (BU) def. Judit Vives (AMCC) 6-0, 6-0
3. #46 Jordaan Sanford (BU) vs. Maider Martin (AMCC) 6-0, 2-1, unfinished
4. Blair Shankle (BU) vs. Celia Rodriguez (AMCC) 6-0, 4-1, unfinished
5. Alex Leatu (BU) vs. Sandra Burges (AMCC) 6-4, unfinished
6. Alex Clay (BU) def. Kerry Galhos (AMCC) 6-0, 6-1
1. Victoria Kisialeva/Jordaan Sanford (BU) def. Sandra Burges/Judit Vives (AMCC) 8-5
2. Ema Burgic/Kiah Generette (BU) vs. Celia Rodriguez/Maider Martin (AMCC) 7-5, unfinished
3. #84 Blair Shankle/Alex Clay (BU) def. Stefania Nicolae/Kerry Galhos (AMCC) 8-0
Texas A&M - Corpus Christi 22-6
Baylor 25-6; National ranking #14
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1); Singles (6,1,2)