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15th-Ranked Tigers Upset #4 Georgia,4-3, in Women’s Tennis

Feb. 6, 2010

ATHENS, GA – For the second time in the last four matches, Clemson women’s tennis found itself trailing 3-1 to a nationally ranked opponent. And, for the second time, the 15th-ranked Tigers emerged victorious, this time downing #4 Georgia, 4-3, in Athens on Saturday afternoon in a match that took five and a half hours to complete. Clemson improves to 7-0, while Georgia falls to 3-1 on the season.

Clemson dropped the doubles point, but won flights three through six in singles to take down their fifth ranked opponent of 2010, and the highest-ranked victory since defeating #4 Georgia Tech last season. It was Clemson’s first win against a top-five opponent on the road since April 9, 2006, a 4-3 win over North Carolina and the Tigers’ fourth-ever win over a top-five team on the road in team history.

The results of the match fell into the hands of Tiger Laurianne Henry and Bulldog Naoko Ueshima at flight five. Henry took the first set in a tie break, but fell 6-1 in the second set, evening the match. Earlier in the season, Henry had a similar opportunity against #37 Texas A&M, capping a comeback in whch the Tigers trailed 3-1. She defeated Sheri Olivier in a three-set marathon, 7-5, 3-6, 7-6(4) to help Clemson advance in the ITA Kick-Off Weekend.

On Saturday, history repeated itself, as Henry took the third set, 6-3, taking the final three games and lifting Clemson to 7-0 for only the sixth time in school history.

Estefania Balda and Henry took down Lara Fakhoury and Naoko Ueshima, 8-6 at flight-three doubles, moving to 2-0 in the dual meet season to start the doubles scoring. Nadja Gilchrist and Chelsey Gullickson then defeated Tigers Ina Hadziselimovic and Keri Wong, 8-6, at flight one, the duo’s first loss of the season. Gilchrist and Gullickson spent most of the fall ranked in the top ten. Cameron Ellis and Yvette Hyndman then clinched the doubles point for the Bulldogs, defeating Josipa Bek and Nelly Ciolkowski, 8-3 at flight two.

14th-ranked Chelsea Gullickson then took down Keri Wong, 6-3, 6-2 at flight one to give the Bulldogs a 2-0 edge. It was Wong’s first singles loss of the season after winning six straight matches, including two over ranked opponents.

Freshman Nelly Ciolkowski then won 6-3, 6-3 against Cameron Ellis at flight four to pull the Tigers to within 2-1. Ciolkowski moved to 7-0 on the season and 14-1 in her career.

Georgia extended the lead to 3-1, as #57 Nadja Gilchrist dropped 9th-ranked Josipa Bek in three sets, 6-4, 2-6, 6-2 at flight two.

Ina Hadziselimovic got a point back for the Tigers, defeating Yvette Hyndman at flight three, winning the final two sets after dropping a tiebreak in the first set. She rebounded after the first set loss to win the final two sets, 6-2 and 6-4.

Estefania Balda pulled the Tigers even at 3-3 with a 7-6, 6-4 win at flight six over Lara Fakhoury, whom Balda had beaten in doubles earlier in the day. Balda has won four straight matches, and this was her third match that tied the match or gave Clemson a win.

Clemson will return to action on Feb. 9 at home as they take on Charlotte in a 2:30 pm contest, before heading to the ITA National Team Indoor Championships in Madison, WI on Feb. 12-15.

Complete Results:

#15 Clemson v. #4 GeorgiaFebruary 6, 2010 – Hopkins Indoor Courts – Athens, GADoubles: (UGA wins doubles point)1. Gilchrist/Gullickson (UGA) def. Hadziselimovic/Wong (CU), 8-6 2. Ellis/Hyndman (UGA) def. Bek/Ciolkowski (CU), 8-3 3. Balda/Henry (CU) def. Fakhoury/Ueshima (UGA), 8-6Order of Finish: 3,1,2*

Singles:1. #14 Chelsey Gullickson (UGA) def. Ina Hadziselimovic (CU) def. Yvette Hyndman (UGA), 6-7, 6-2, 6-44. #61 Nelly Ciolkowski (CU) def. Cameron Ellis (UGA), 6-3, 6-35. Laurianne Henry (CU) def. Naoko Ueshima (UGA), 7-6, 1-6, 6-36. Estefania Balda (CU) def. Lara Fakhoury (UGA), 7-6, 6-4Order of Finish: 1,4,2,3,6,5*