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Tuesday August 9th

No. 1 UNC women's tennis takes first loss of the season to No. 9 Duke on Friday

<p>DTH File. Sophomore Fiona Crawley looks to return a volley during her singles match versus Boston College on Sunday, March 20, 2022.&nbsp;</p>
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DTH File. Sophomore Fiona Crawley looks to return a volley during her singles match versus Boston College on Sunday, March 20, 2022. 

For the first time in almost four years, the No. 1 North Carolina women’s tennis team (23-1, 12-1) lost a regular season dual match on Friday, falling 5-2 to No. 9 Duke (16-3, 11-2) in Durham. 

What happened? 

Both teams played highly competitive tennis in all three doubles matches, but the Blue Devils took the point 2-1.  

The nation’s top-ranked duo of UNC’s Fiona Crawley and Elizabeth Scotty won 6-2 against Duke’s No. 38 combo of Karolina Berankova and Georgia Drummy. 

The other two, however, struggled, as No. 26 Alle Sanford and Cameron Morra lost 6-3 to No. 55 Chloe Beck and Ellie Coleman and the Carson Tanguilig-Reilly Tran duo lost 6-3 to Eliza Omirou and Margaryta Bilokin. 

In the more important singles matches, UNC senior No. 4 Morra fell behind 6-1 and rolled her left ankle on the final point of the seventh and final set. She tried to fight back with an obvious limp, but to no avail, and she fell 6-1, 6-4. 

The #2 singles match saw UNC’s No. 17 Scotty take on Duke’s No. 21 Drummy. Scotty fell 6-4 in the first set but battled back to take the second, 6-2. Drummy sealed the deal, though, in the final frame and won 7-5. 

Sophomore Reilly Tran, ranked No. 24 in the country, provided one of the two UNC victories in the number three singles match. She took down No. 122 Emma Jackson in three sets – 6-2, 3-6, 5-1 – in a contest that got called when Crawley lost in the next part of the ladder. 

Another UNC win came from first-year Carson Tanguilig, the No. 48 singles player in the nation, in the fifth singles match. She fell in the first set against Bilokin but came back to win sets two and three by a score of 6-1.  

North Carolina’s Anika Yarlagadda faced Duke’s Coleman in the final singles match and fell 7-5, 6-4 in a hard-fought battle. 

Who stood out?  

Tanguilig struggled in the first set of her first career dual match against her team’s biggest rival, but the Alpharetta, Georgia native rebounded nicely and won the next two sets by five points each. 

The Scotty-Crawley doubles duo continued to impress, winning easily once again and proving why it’s ranked number one in the nation.
 

When was it decided? 

Duke’s unranked Kelly Chen came back from a 4-0 first set deficit to win 6-4, 6-3 against No. 45 Crawley, giving the home team the clinching fourth point and a 4-1 lead. This was Crawley’s first dual-match loss of the season in singles.  

Why does it matter? 

North Carolina women’s tennis rarely loses regular season dual matches.  

Losing stings because it’s almost unheard of for this program, and it hurts even more when it happens in Durham against UNC’s fiercest rival. 

The season isn’t over, however, and the Tar Heels have plenty of chances coming up to make amends for this shortcoming.  

When do they play next? 

The Tar Heels next head to Rome, Ga. this upcoming weekend for the ACC Championship, where they might get another crack at Duke. 

@dthsports | sports@dailytarheel.com 

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