Bulldogs top Lady Vols, advance to SEC tourney finals
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. - The fourth-ranked University of Georgia women's tennis team topped No. 15 Tennessee 4-2 on Saturday evening at the Billingsley Tennis Center, in the 2023 Southeastern Conference Tournament. With the win, the Bulldogs advance to the SEC Tournament Finals for the third consecutive season.
In doubles, Georgia (21-4, 12-1 SEC) was swept by Tennessee (19-5, 11-2 SEC). The sophomore tandem of Dasha Vidmanova and Mell Reasco fell to No. 40 Esther Adeshina and Rebeka Mertena 6-4 on court one, while Meg Kowalski and Lea Ma fell to Daria Kuczer and Eleonora Molinaro on court three.
In singles play, the Bulldogs won four matches. Third-ranked Ma dominated the top court, defeating No. 26 Elza Tomase 6-3, 6-2 to give Georgia its first win of the day. The Lady Cold responded with a win on court six as sophomore Guillermina Grant fell in straight sets. The Bulldogs tied the match up at two all after Kowalski topped Lauren Anzalotta 7-6 (2), 6-2. No. 6 Vidmanova gave Georgia its first lead in the overall match, picking up a 6-4, 7-5 win over #27 Rebeka Mertena. The freshman, No. 71 Anastasiia Lopata clinched the match for the Bulldogs. After splitting the first two sets with Eleonora Molinaro, Lopata overcame a 5-1 game deficit in the third set to win 6-3, 3-6, 7-6(8) and send Georgia to the finals
Up next, second-seed Georgia face top-seeded Texas A&M in the Finals of the 2023 SEC Tournament. First serve is scheduled for 2 p.m. ET. The match will be broadcast on SEC Network. This marks the 23rd trip to the SEC Tournament Finals in program history - Eight of which the Bulldogs were crowned champions. This also marks the third consecutive season the Bulldogs will face the Aggies in the finals. Georgia topped Texas A&M 4-0 in 2021, however, the Aggies bested the Bulldogs in last year's final 4-0.
1. #40 Esther Adeshina/Rebeka Mertena (TENN) def. Dasha Vidmanova/Mell Reasco (UGA) 6-4
2. #35 Guillermina Grant/Mai Nirundorn (UGA) vs. Catherine Aulia/Lauren Anzalotta (TENN) 4-5, unfinished
3. Daria Kuczer/Eleonora Molinaro (TENN) def. Meg Kowalski/Lea Ma (UGA) 6-3
1. #3 Lea Ma (UGA) def. #26 Elza Tomase (TENN) 6-3, 6-2
2. #6 Dasha Vidmanova (UGA) def. #27 Rebeka Mertena (TENN) 6-4, 7-5
3. #66 Mell Reasco (UGA) vs. #46 Daria Kuczer (TENN) 1-6, 6-4, 5-5, unfinished
4. #71 Anastasiia Lopata (UGA) def. Eleonora Molinaro (TENN) 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (10-8)
5. Meg Kowalski (UGA) def. Lauren Anzalotta (TENN) 7-6 (7-2), 6-2
6. Esther Adeshina (TENN) def. Guillermina Grant (UGA) 7-6 (7-2), 6-2