Lexington, Ky. – The No. 23 LSU women’s tennis team handed the Kentucky Wildcats their first loss of the season after a gritty 4-3 win on Saturday afternoon at the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex.
With the win, LSU moves to 6-0 on the season and 1-0 in SEC play while the Wildcats fall to 8-1 and 0-1 in the SEC.
“Tremendous effort and a gutsy performance by our team today,” co-head coach Michael Sell said. “Today showed the depth in our lineup is a big strength of this team. Nina (Geissler) and Maggie (Cubitt) came out late due to the four court setup but were huge for us with their strong performance to clinch the win. We need to play better in certain parts of the match but this team is continuing to improve and we’re proud of the growth we’re seeing. We’ll enjoy the win before getting ready for our match again No. 9 Vanderbilt on Monday.”
Seniors Taylor Bridges and Paris Corley earned their fifth doubles win of the dual season and first ranked win of the season, defeating the No. 57-ranked duo of Lesedi Jacobs and Anastasia Tkachenko in a tight 6-4 contest at the No. 3 doubles.
Kentucky grabbed one back moments later at the No. 1 when Akvile Parazinskaite and partner Carlota Molina defeated the No. 14 duo of senior Eden Richardson and sophomore Nina Geissler in an extended 7-5 match.
No. 83-ranked Carrington grabbed LSU’s first point of the afternoon at the No. 2 singles against Molina. Carrington took the first set 6-4 and followed that with a 6-3 win in the second to claim a straight win and her sixth win of the season.
Kentucky took a 2-1 lead after Parazinskaite defeated No. 41 Bridges at the No. 1. Bridges claimed the first set by a score of 6-4 before Parazinskaite struck back with a 6-2 win in the second to extend the match. In the third set, Parazinskaite took an early lead and went on to win 6-2 to claim victory.
At the No. 3, Richardson made it 2-2 on the afternoon with a win over Stevens. Richardson and Stevens contested an even first set that saw Richardson narrowly edge Stevens 7-5. Stevens would equalize in the second set, winning 6-3 to force a third. Richardson recovered from her second set performance, dropping only game to win 6-1 and get her fourth win of the dual season.
The Wildcats made it 3-2 with a win at the No. 4, where Jacobs defeated Corley. Jacobs took the first set by a score of 6-2 before Corley struck back in the second, winning by a score of 6-3. The third set was a close contest, with Jacobs holding Corley 6-4 and claiming victory.
Geissler tied the match up at 3-3 after getting a straight set win over Fiona Arresse at the No. 6. Geissler got off to a quick start, taking the first set in a strong 6-2 manner. The second set was similar, with Geissler in control and eventually winning 6-3 to claim her team-high fifth win of the dual season.
The match came down to the No. 5, where Cubitt faced Girbau. The first set was a back and forth one, with Cubitt able to gain the upperhand and pull out a 6-4 win. The second set saw Cubitt take the lead and hold off a late surge from Girbau to win 6-3 and clinch the 4-3 win for LSU.
LSU will travel to Nashville, Tennessee for a Top 25 matchup against No. 9 Vanderbilt at noon CT on Monday, February 22.
For more information on the LSU women’s tennis program follow the Tigers on Twitter @lsuwten , on Instagram @LSUWTen , and on www.Facebook.com/lsuwten.
#23 LSU 4, Kentucky 3
Feb 20, 2021 at Lexington, Ky. (Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex)
LSU 6-0; National ranking #23
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (2,1,3,4,6,5)
Official: Marcus Lee