Junior Xandra Fougner topped Helen Nyikos, 6-4, 7-5, in the decisive match at No. 4 singles to spark No. 3 seeded UNCW to a 4-3 upset of No. 4 College of Charleston in the quarterfinals of the Colonial Athletic Association women’s tennis tournament on Friday.
The Seahawks won for the fourth time in their last five matches to improve to 10-7 this spring. The Cougars finished their season at 18-9.
In a see-saw match at Elon’s Jimmy Powell Tennis Center in Elon, NC, the two teams met for the second straight outing after battling in the regular season finale just one week ago.
The Seahawks jumped out to a quick 1-0 advantage by taking the doubles point for the 11th time in 17 matches with wins at the No. 1 and No. 3 positions. The top team of Madara Straume and Sabrina Barisano defeated CofC’s Liza Fieldsend and Mara Argyriou, 6-4, to get things started and the No. 3 tandem of Fougner and Celeste Matute routed Christi Woodson and Turner Yates, 6-1, to secure the point.
CofC squared the match at 1-all with a win at No. 6 singles before Straume breezed past Fieldsend, 6-3, 6-2, at No. 1 singles for her 14th win in 17 matches. But Argyriou claimed a victory at No. 2 singles to bring the Cougars back even at 2-all.
Barisano outlasted Rachel McNeely, 6-2, 7-6 (7), at No. 5 singles to give the Seahawks a 3-2 edge until Woodson rallied past UNCW’s Alix Theodossiou, 3-6, 6-1, 6-1, at No. 3 singles to knot the score again at 3-all.
Fougner, however, clinched the match for the third time this season by trimming Nykos, 6-4, 7-5, sending the Seahawks into the semifinals for the first time since winning the CAA title in 2014.
Coach Hans Olsen’s team will face No. 2 seed and host Elon at 10 a.m. on Saturday after the Phoenix blanked No. 7 Towson, 4-0, in another quarterfinal match on Friday.
UNCW News Release