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UNC men's, women's tennis teams find success in NCAA Tournament singles, doubles play

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Junior Fiona Crawley serves the ball in a singles match against N.C. State on May 20, 2023. UNC won, 4-1.

After playing in the NCAA singles and doubles tournament this week, junior Fiona Crawley and sophomore Carson Tanguilig ended North Carolina’s tennis season in a same-team final against first-year Reese Brantmeier and senior Elizabeth Scotty. 

What happened?

On the first day of singles play, many of the competing Tar Heels advanced to the round of 32 in singles play. Though graduate Abbey Forbes and Brantmeier both fell in the first round of the women’s competition, Crawley, Tanguilig and senior Anika Yarlagadda all lived to see another day. Graduate Ryan Seggerman found similar success in the men’s singles competition, winning 6-4, 7-6. 

While many Tar Heels made it to the round of 32, only one player advanced to the round of 16. Seggerman fell to Georgia’s Ethan Quinn in two sets. Following Seggerman, both Yarlagadda and Tanguilig dropped their second matches. Crawley advanced to the round of 16, but she could not clench the win against North Carolina State’s Amelia Rajecki, losing 6-3 in the third set. 

In the doubles competition, all of the competing doubles pairings advanced in both the men’s and women’s competitions after the first day of the tournament. Going into the round of 16, graduate student Brian Cernoch and freshmen Benjamin Kittay fell in two sets 6-2, 7-5. Seggerman and sophomore Casey Kania faced a similar fate losing in two sets 6-4, 7-6. 

In the women’s doubles competition, Crawley and Carson Tanguilig along with Brantmeier and Scotty made it to the championship match where the two pairs faced one another in the first same-team doubles championship since 2012. To get to the championship, Crawley and Tanguilig had to overcome Virginia’s Julia Adams and Melodie Collard, who they lost to previously in the regular season. Winning the match 6-4, 7-6, the Tar Heel pair advanced to the championship where they met familiar blue uniforms. 

Throughout the highly contested match in the all-UNC final, both pairs faced many lead changes and ties. With Crawley and Tanguilig taking the first set 6-1 and Brantmeier and Scotty quickly taking the second 6-2, the match was driven to a third set. Though the set was tied at three separate times, Crawley and Tanguilig refused to relent after taking an early 5-1 lead. After earning the last two points, Crawley and Tanguilig secured the set and the match, winning 11-9.

Who stood out? 

Both women’s pairings took the momentum from the regular season and continued to see success in the NCAA doubles tournament. Although Brantmeier and Scotty fell to Crawley and Tanguilig, both pairs appeared assertive and in command. 

In the singles tournament, Crawley also proved to be a dominant force. After only losing two matches in the regular season, Crawley made it to the round of sixteen and forced a third set before losing to Rajecki. 

Why does it matter?

With Crawley and Tanguilig winning the doubles championship after only winning it two years ago, North Carolina has continued to prove itself as a powerful tennis program. Having major showings in the singles, doubles, and team events in both the women’s and men’s sides showcase how elite the program is. 

When do they play next?

After this competition, both the men’s and women’s season has ended. The men’s tennis team has finished No. 14 on the ITA rankings while the women have finished No. 1.

@_emmahmoon

@dthsports | sports@dailytarheel.com

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