TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The 20th ranked Florida State women’s tennis team (15-4, 7-2) upset No. 14 Wake Forest (17-4, 8-2) at the Scott Speicher Memorial Tennis Center 5-2 on Friday.
“We did another great job of getting the doubles point,” said head coach Jennifer Hyde. “We did what we needed to do but we still need to improve. We are playing with a lot of confidence and when we do that we play aggressive and that is what I like to see out of this team.”
Once again the Noles started the day by taking the doubles point. This is the 17th time in 19 matches that they have done so and they are 13-4 when that happens. The Noles jumped out to an early lead on courts one and two and they kept them throughout the match. Senior Ana Oparenovic and sophomore Emmanuelle Salas were the first to win their doubles court as they won 6-2 on court one. Wake Forest tied up the doubles point with a 6-1 win on court three but the Noles clinched it with a 6-3 win on court two from senior Ariana Rahmanparast and junior Carla Touly.
“We got down early in a few spots in singles but did a fantastic job of hanging in it and finding our way back into them,” said Hyde. “You expect every match in the ACC to be a battle and that is what that was. I am proud of these girls for pulling off a top-15 win.”
Florida State took that momentum into singles winning three first sets and turning those into three straight-set wins. Rahmanparast jumped out to a 5-1 first set lead before finishing off her opponent 6-3. In the second set, she jumped out to a quick lead as well going up 3-1 before taking the set 6-2 to give FSU a 2-0 lead.
Oparenovic extended the lead to 3-0 with a straight-set win of her own on court two. Down 3-1 she stormed back to take five of the final six games on her way to a 6-4 first set win. In the second set she too took an early lead and kept it on her way to winning 6-3.
Junior Andrea Garcia clinched the match with a win on court six. Garcia came back from an early deficit to tie the match at five in the first set. Down 3-4 she went on to win four of the final six games to take the first set 7-5. She dominated the second set on her way to a 6-1 win.
With the match already clinched Wake Forest earned their first two team points with wins on courts three and four.
The match was capped off by a huge win by Touly. She went down 4-0 in the first set and came back to force a tiebreak that she lost. In the second set, she once again went down early, this time 3-1. She was able to come back to win the second set 6-4 over 32nd ranked Emma Davis. In the third set super-breaker, Touly jumped out to an 8-4 lead before finishing her opponent off 10-5 to secure the 5-2 Seminole win.
“It is difficult sometimes when the match is decided and you are still playing,” said Hyde. “You have to go from playing for your team to playing for your pride. She had to switch gears mentally and I like her in those situations. She did a fantastic job today and I am proud of her.”
Florida State will be back in action on Sunday for their Paint it Pink match against Clemson at 12 pm.
“We certainly want to enjoy this match because we know these types of wins don’t come easy,” said Hyde. “We need to quickly turn our sights to another ACC match on Sunday against Clemson.”
#20 Florida State University 5, Wake Forest 2
Wake Forest 17-4, 7-2 National ranking #14
Florida State University 15-4, 7-2; National ranking #20
Order of finish: Doubles (1,3,2); Singles (5,2,6,3,4,1)