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Friday April 23rd

No. 1 UNC women's tennis survives scare against No. 2 FSU, 4-3, to remain undefeated

UNC senior Alexa Graham swings at her opponent's serve on Sunday, Feb. 2, 2020. Graham won her first set 6-4, and 6-2 in the second set. UNC beat Vanderbilt 7-0 overall.
Buy Photos UNC senior Alexa Graham swings at her opponent's serve on Sunday, Feb. 2, 2020. Graham won her first set 6-4, and 6-2 in the second set. UNC beat Vanderbilt 7-0 overall.

In its first matchup of conference play this season, the No. 1 North Carolina women’s tennis team picked up a 4-3 win on the road against No. 2 Florida State on Friday evening, extending the Tar Heels' winning streak to six straight matches over No. 2 ranked opponents. 

What happened?

UNC opened the match by securing the doubles point. The No. 19 team of senior Makenna Jones and junior Alle Sanford picked up the first win after defeating the No. 58 team from the Seminoles by a score of 6-1. 

The No. 4 pairing of senior Sara Daavettila and senior Alexa Graham was upset in the second doubles match by a score of 6-3 against the No. 30 team from Florida State. The Tar Heels were able to secure the doubles point after sophomore Cameron Morra and first-year Elizabeth Scotty finished their match with a 6-2 win. 

In singles, the teams went down to the wire. FSU earned an early 3-1 lead in singles play, giving it a 3-2 lead in the meet. The Tar Heels had their backs against the wall and needed to win both of its final matches to defeat the Seminoles. No. 4 Morra took her first singles set, 6-1, and won the third set by a score of 7-6 (7) after dropping the second set, 6-2. 

Morra’s win tied the meet at 3-3, leaving it up to the final singles match, which featured North Carolina’s No. 111 Scotty. Scotty narrowly dropped the first set, 6-4, but picked up a 6-2 win in the second, leaving the fate of the meet up to a decisive third set. She handled it convincingly, earning a 6-1 win to give the Tar Heels the 4-3 overall win.

Who stood out?

Two of the Tar Heels' highest ranked players, No. 4 Morra and No. 5 Graham, were able to pick up wins against the Seminoles over unranked opponents, despite unexpected turbulence along the way. Morra battled the longest for a win and squeaked out with one after the 7-6 (7) third set tiebreaker.

When was it decided?

Heading into the final singles match, the teams were deadlocked at 3-3, meaning whichever team won the last singles point would win the meet. 

Why does it matter?

UNC’s win gives the program a perfect 13-0 record on the season. It also gave North Carolina its first win in the conference play portion of the schedule, and the Tar Heels have 12 matches to go in the regular season, all against conference opponents.

When do they play next?

The Tar Heels wrap up their Florida trip on Sunday with a matchup against Miami beginning at 11 a.m.

@emilythoreson

@DTHSports | sports@dailytarheel.com

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