Feb. 23, 2014
Mary Anne Daines fought off one last furious charge by Rice's Natalie Beazant in the match deciding tiebreaker and lead 14th ranked Alabama to a 4-3 win over the 24th ranked Owls and capture the women's title at the 65th Blue Gray National Tennis Classic in Montgomery, Alabama.
Rice (5-4) was looking to win against a third consecutive top 30 team after dropping the doubles point, but Daines foiled that effort by taking early control of the decisive final tiebreaker. She moved out to a 9-3 lead before Beazant reeled off three straight points to close to 9-6. Daines then brought the nearly four-hour match to a close with a 10-6 win.
Beazant and Liat Zimmermann picked up their first career win over a top 20 doubles opponent with a 6-3 decision over Alabama's 20th ranked Erin Routliffe and Maya Jansen, but the Crimson Tide grabbed the opening point with wins on courts two and three.
After Dominique Harmath tied the match with a straight set win on court two, Zimmermann concluded her strong weekend by downing Bama's 59th ranked Maya Jansen 6-3, 6-1 to put the Owls in front.
Rice picked up its third point when senior Kimberly Anicete battled back from a first set loss to defeat Emily Zabor, 3-6, 6-2, 1-0.
The Owls will be back on familiar turf next weekend when they host New Mexico State and 23rd ranked Tulsa next weekend at Jake Hess Tennis Stadium.
Tennis Match Results
Rice vs Alabama
2/23/2014 at Montgomery, AL
(Lagoon Park Tennis Center)
#14 Alabama 4, #24 Rice 3
1. Mary Anne Daines (BAMA) def. Natalie Beazant (RICE) 7-5, 6-7, 1-0
2. Dominique Harmath (RICE) def. Danielle Spielmann (BAMA) 6-1, 6-1
3. #62 Erin Routliffe (BAMA) def. Katherine Ip (RICE) 0-6, 6-1, 1-0
4. Liat Zimmermann (RICE) def. #59 Maya Jansen (BAMA) 6-3, 6-1
5. Kimberly Anicete (RICE) def. Emily Zabor (BAMA) 3-6, 6-2, 1-0
6. Luicelena Perez (BAMA) def. Alison Ho (RICE) 6-1, 7-5
1. Natalie Beazant/Liat Zimmermann (RICE) def. #20 Erin Routliffe/Maya Jansen (BAMA) 6-3
2. Mary Anne Daines/Danielle Spielmann (BAMA) def. Dominique Harmath/Katherine Ip (RICE) 6-2
3. #36 Emily Zabor/Luicelena Perez (BAMA) def. Kimberly Anicete/Alison Ho (RICE) 6-4
Rice 5-4; National ranking #24
Alabama 8-2; National ranking #14
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1,3); Singles (2,4,6,5,3,1)
Blue-Gray National Tennis Classic Championship Match