Hoosiers Knock Off #23 Wake Forest
Feb. 28, 2009
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Facing their third consecutive top-25 team, the Hoosiers came out on top in a 4-3 win over #23 Wake Forest. Indiana won four of six singles matches over the nationally-ranked foe to earn the victory.
"Wow, I'm speechless and that usually doesn't happen," said Head Coach Lin Loring. "I don't think I have ever been prouder of a team in my 32 years at Indiana. I guess the old cliché is correct, it isn't over until the fat lady sings."
Wake Forest came into Bloomington red-hot, dominating the doubles play by scores of 8-0, 8-3 and 8-1 to take a 1-0 advantage on the team scoreboard.
"We played just awful in the doubles, it was embarrassing," said Coach Loring. "When you consider how badly we played in singles last weekend against two other top-25 teams, I'm sure everyone thought the match was over."
Singles play was nothing like the doubles though as Coach Loring's Hoosiers battled hard to the very end. Lindsey Stuckey made quick work over her opponent, Ryan Cutillo, at No. 5 singles with a 6-4, 6-3 win to quickly even the team score at 1-1.
The score remained even after Wake Forest grabbed the win at No. 3 singles and Indiana's Sigrid Fischer capped off her triumph at No. 4 singles with an 8-6 second-set tiebreaker.
Charlotte Martin put together a pair of comebacks in her match. First, she fought back from an opening set in which she only won two games to force a third set following her 6-4 tally in the second stanza. Martin then found herself in a 4-1 deficit to start the final set before notching three straight games to pull even at 4-4. She then went on to finish out the set, 7-5, and put the Cream and Crimson ahead 3-2 on the team scoreboard.
Megan Matter imitated Martin in her third set, also winning three straight games to dig herself out of a 3-0 hole. Meanwhile on the other side of the IU Tennis Center, Katya Zapadalova was in the midst of a heated third set with Wake's Sasha Kulikova, the 59th ranked singles player in the country. Zapadalova was able to seal the deal and give the Hoosiers the clinching fourth team point with a 3-6, 7-5, 6-4 winner over #59 Kulikova in the No. 1 singles contest. Matter's comeback fell just short in a third-set tiebreaker defeat.
"Coach Azcui and I talked all week about mental concentration and physical effort," said Loring. "We did an unbelievable job of staying focused and battling back when we down. What a difference a week makes. This win will go a long way toward getting us into the NCAA's."
#44 Indiana 4, #23 Wake Forest 3
No. 1- Kulikova/Poske (WF) def. Stuckey/Zapadalova (IU) 8-0
No. 2- Davis/Malvehy (WF) def. Fischer/Sopel (IU) 8-3
No. 3- Reveche/Tara (WF) def. Berdala/Matter (IU) 8-1
The Hoosiers' next match pits them against another highly-ranked team next Saturday when they hit the road for a match at #33 Illinois. The Big Ten opener marks the beginning of a month-long road trip for Indiana.
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