Posted: Mar 3, 2013 8:37 PM
COLUMBIA - No. 43 South Carolina recorded a narrow 4-3 over the No. 71 Mizzou Tennis team Sunday afternoon at the Green Tennis Center. The loss dropped Mizzou's record to 6-3 overall and 0-2 in Southeastern Conference play, while the Gamecocks improved to 8-4 and 1-1.
South Carolina went up 1-0 after earning the doubles point with wins at No. 1 and No. 3. The Gamecock's top doubles team of Jaklin Alawi and Dominika Kanakova defeated junior Cierra Gaytan-Leach and sophomore Elisha Gabb, 8-3. At No. 3, South Carolina's Elixane Lechemia and Ximena Siles Luna prevailed over sophomore Alex Clark and freshman Madison Rhyer, 8-5.
South Carolina increased its lead to 2-0 when Gabb retired at No. 3 singles down 5-0 to No. 58 Lechemia.
Senior Maria Christensen continued her hot play as she dispatched Kanakova, 6-3, 6-1, at No. 4 action. The win, which brought Mizzou within 2-1, was the ninth consecutive for Christensen, who is a perfect 9-0 in dual matches this spring.
South Carolina's Katerina Popova, ranked 108th nationally, defeated junior Rachel Stuhlmann at No. 2 singles, 6-2, 6-2, for a 3-1 Gamecock advantage.
Mizzou used wins at No. 1 and No. 5 singles to knot the match at 3-3. At No. 1, No. 107 Gaytan-Leach earned a 6-4, 6-2 victory over No. 69 Alawi to mark Gaytan-Leach's second victory over Alawi this season. After winning the first set 7-5, Clark fought back from a 4-1 deficit in the second set to take the set 7-6 (7-5) and earn her seventh dual win this spring and tie the score at 3-3.
At No. 6 singles, South Carolina's Ximena Siles Luna prevailed over Rhyner, 6-2, 6-1, to clinch the match win for the Gamecocks.
The Tigers hit the road next weekend to continue SEC play. Mizzou takes on No. 53 Kentucky on Friday, March 8 at 3 p.m. CT before facing No. 12 Vanderbilt on Sunday, March 10 at 1 p.m.