Feb. 11, 2011
By Zach Mendelson, Seminoles.com
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The No. 15 Florida State women’s tennis team (3-1) came on with a strong showing that saw five of six Seminoles post victories in singles to help FSU tame the No. 61 Auburn Tigers (0-3) by the dominating score of 6-1. The Garnet and Gold now face in-state rival Miami, ranked No. 10, this Sunday in Coral Gables to open ACC play.
“I think in a couple spots in singles we found ourselves in a bit of a pickle, but we did a good job of taking command in those third sets to get the win,” said head coach Jennifer Hyde. “We really dug ourselves out some holes tonight, but that is what this team does. They are very good at that, but we have to make sure we don’t rely on doing that all the time. All in all it was a good night, it was a good battle. We knew Auburn was going to come in here and compete hard and they did just that. They are always a competitive team and we got what we expected. The girls did a good job of taking care of business again and we will take this 6-1 win with us down to Miami in a really important match to open ACC play.”
The `Noles kicked off the match strong by posting two doubles wins to take the 1-0 lead into singles. The biggest story was the young duo of freshman Ruth Seaborne and sophomore Francesca Segarelli defeating Auburn’s No. 21 ranked duo of Paulina Schippers and Jacqueline Kasler 8-2. Court three saw also FSU winning with seniors Katie Rybakova and Federica Suess defeating Auburn’s Plamena Kurteva and Taylor Schreimann 8-1.
“Fran and Ruth are a very young duo, and with the way they are playing they are likely working themselves into the rankings,” said Hyde. “I think they are playing really good doubles together. They are jelling well as a team, learning how the other thinks, and kind of planning two or three hits ahead in the match. They really compliment each other well with the big ground strokes from Fran setting up Ruth at the net. They are coming along very well, they are a very exciting doubles team and we are looking forward to them having a couple more opportunities to get some ranked wins with them.”
FSU’s continued to ride the wave of success in singles as all the `Noles won on five of the six courts, including big comebacks by sophomore Noemie Scharle and Ruth Seaborne who fell behind in their first sets. The win was big for Scharle who not only clinched the victory for the Seminoles, but is starting to increase her confidence after missing last season due to a wrist injury.
“That was a big match for Noemie,” said Hyde.” I think at the end of the first set she could have very easily felt defeated, and she knew she had to overcome some hurdles tonight, but she is starting to get her confidence back slowly from her injury. She did a really good job of putting her head down and fighting through it. She said to me in the second set she was not going to lose this match, and from that point forward she lost only one more game. She needed to get over that hurdle tonight and I am very proud of her effort tonight for doing that.”
“Physically I feel good,” added Scharle. “It’s just all mental right now for me. I am not playing with a lot of confidence right now and have been struggling in my matches. In practice I am playing well but then I come into the match and kind of stress out because I am working on a lot of things right now, so my confidence is not great, but I am just happy I made it through today. Wins always make your confidence better, so even though I struggled a lot today, playing ugly and winning against their number two is always good.”
Florida State will have a quick turnaround as it heads to face in-state rival Miami, ranked tenth in the country, at the Neil Shiff Tennis Center. FSU will have to brace itself for stiff competition with Miami brining in No. 16 Bianca Eichkorn, No. 98 Anna Bartenstein, and No. 99 Danielle Mills. Doubles will also be a battle between both programs with No. 42 Kayla Rizzolo and Gabriela Mejia as well as No. 46 Eichkorn and Barnstein representing the Hurricanes.
“We are prepared,” said Hyde. “We had a good week of practice and we are on the plane tomorrow. We will have a light hit tomorrow and as soon as our feet hit the ground on Sunday morning it will be all about that instate rivalry, all about pride, and all about representing Florida State. We know it’s going to be a battle down there, but we are really looking forward to it. Everyone is very excited.”
As always fans can follow the match with live stats on www.seminoles.com, Twitter @FSU_WTennis and the Florida State Women’s Tennis fan page on Facebook.
#42 Katie Rybakova (FSU) def. Paulina Schippers (AUB) 6-3, 6-7 (3-6), 6-1
#18 Noemie Scharle (FSU) def. Caroline Thornton (AUB) 4-6, 6-1. 6-0
Francesca Segarelli (FSU) def. Maria Arechavaleta (AUB) 6-2, 6-0
Ruth Seaborne (FSU) def. Olivia Bennett (AUB) 3-6, 6-3, 6-2
Federica Suess (FSU) def. Jacqueline Kasler (AUB) 6-0, 3-6, 6-1
Plamena Kurteva (AUB) def. Manon Veldman (FSU) 3-6, 2-6
Seaborne/Segarelli def. #21 Schippers/Kasler (AUB)8-2
Thornton/Bennett (AUB) def. Scharle/Veldman (FSU) 8-6
Rybakova/Suess (FSU) def. Kurteva/Schreimann (AUB) 8-1