CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – It was a battle of the blues and a top-five matchup Wednesday in Chapel Hill as the third-ranked Duke women’s tennis team fell to top-ranked North Carolina, 4-1, in the Cone-Kenfield Center. The Blue Devils drop to 10-2 overall and 3-1 in conference play as the Tar Heels are now 17-1 and 5-0 in ACC matches.
Duke’s only losses are from North Carolina as the two met in the semifinals of the ITA Indoor National Championships.
“It was a disappointing loss for sure,” head coach Jamie Ashworth said. “Doubles was way too quick. We didn’t stick to our game plan. I think the momentum of doubles carried into singles. As of today, they are a better team than us. They’ve beaten us twice. Our girls have to learn from this. They have to play without fear and lay everything on the line. You get so few opportunities a year to play against teams who are ranked higher than you. Hopefully we can bounce back, stay motivated, have the right attitude and make the right choices. It starts this weekend against a really good Michigan team.”
For just the fourth-time this season, the Blue Devils dropped the doubles point. The Tar Heels picked up wins on courts one and three to have an advantage heading into singles action. Ninth-ranked duo of Jessie Aney and Alexa Graham handed senior tandem Ellyse Hamlin and Kaitlyn McCarthy just their third loss of the season (6-2) on the top court minutes before Sara Daavettila and Alle Sanford defeated Kelly Chen and Hannah Zhao (6-2) on court three.
Hamlin and McCarthy are now 9-3 this season as they dropped their first contest to a ranked opponent.
Hamlin was quick to even the score with a win on court six. The Fairfield, Conn., native cruised to a victory over Alle Sanford (6-0, 6-1) and is now 10-1 this season.
14th-ranked Daavettila tallied the first singles win for the Tar Heels by defeating 19th-ranked Meible Chi (6-4, 6-0) on court three. Chi lost the first two games to Daavettila before rallying back to win four-straight games but was unable to close out the first set before Daavettila controlled the second. Chi drops to 7-2 in dual matches and 2-2 against nationally-ranked foes.
The Tar Heels extended their lead to 3-1 as McCarthy fell to 20th-ranked Cameron Morra on court four. McCarthy evened the score at 5-5 in the second set before Morra captured the final two games to take the court. McCarthy is now 4-3 this season.
The clinching point came down to a third set on court five where Margartya Bilokin faced Aney. Bilokin took the first set (6-4) before falling in 3-6 in the second and 2-6 in the third. The New Canaan, Conn., native attempted to even the score in the third set at 2-2 but fell short as Aney captured the game. Bilokin falls to 8-3 this season.
“We have an opportunity in three days to play a very, very good Michigan team,” Ashworth said. “We have to do better with the intangibles. It’s a choice they all have to make. We can only prepare them so much and we have to make sure we make the right choices on Saturday.”
The Blue Devils will be back in action versus No. 22 Michigan Saturday, March 9 in Orlando, Fla., for the USTA National Campus Collegiate Series.
#GoDuke | #AllUs
Tennis Match Results
Duke vs North Carolina
Mar 06, 2019 at Chapel Hill, N.C.
(Cone-Kenfield Tennis Center)
#1 North Carolina 4, #3 Duke 1
1. #5 Makenna Jones (NC) vs. #23 Kelly Chen (DU) 7-6 (7-5), 5-4, unfinished
2. #6 Alexa Graham (NC) vs. #18 Maria Mateas (DU) 6-4, 6-6 (0-1), unfinished
3. #14 Sara Daavettila (NC) def. #19 Meible Chi (DU) 6-4, 6-0
4. #20 Cameron Morra (NC) def. Kaitlyn McCarthy (DU) 6-2, 7-5
5. Jessie Aney (NC) def. Margaryta Bilokin (DU) 4-6, 6-3, 6-2
6. Ellyse Hamlin (DU) def. Alle Sanford (NC) 6-0, 6-1
1. #9 Jessie Aney/Alexa Graham (NC) def. #24 Kaitlyn McCarthy/Ellyse Hamlin (DU) 6-2
2. #5 Makenna Jones/Cameron Morra (NC) vs. Meible Chi/Margaryta Bilokin (DU) 4-2, unfinished
3. Sara Daavettila/Alle Sanford (NC) def. Kelly Chen/Hannah Zhao (DU) 6-2
Duke 10-2, 3-1; National ranking #3
North Carolina 17-1, 5-0; National ranking #1
Order of finish: Doubles (1,3); Singles (6,3,4,5)