SEATTLE, Wash. – It was a team effort Friday in Seattle, Wash., as the fourth-ranked Duke women’s tennis team rallied against No. 16 Ohio State, 4-3, to advance to the quarterfinals of the ITA Indoor Championships at the Nordstrom Tennis Center.
“It was a tough match,” head coach Jamie Ashworth said. “Give credit to Ohio State because there was a point in the match where you’re looking at the scores and thinking this could be over in an hour and 20 minutes. We won five first sets and were in control of the match and they hung around, dug really deep and did a good job of fighting back. We went from that to hoping Margaret [Margaryta Bilokin] can pull her match out and get to doubles. She came up big. It was a tough match and a battle. Ohio State is good and it was a great team win for us.”
The Blue Devils continued their unbeaten start to the season, improving to 6-0 while the Buckeyes fall to 2-2.
Due to winter weather planning to impact Seattle, Friday’s match times were moved up as singles were played first, followed by doubles if needed.
“The biggest thing about the match today was our seniors,” Ashworth said. “The two of them did a great job in singles and doubles with the emotion. Hopefully others can learn from that but Ellyse [Hamlin] and Kaitlyn [McCarthy] were huge for us today. They’ve been in matches like this but today was big for them and big for our team.”
The Blue Devils got off to a hot start in singles as seniors Kaitlyn McCarthy and Ellyse Hamlin were there to put Duke on the board first with wins on courts four and six, respectively. McCarthy, tabbed No. 100 in the latest Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) rankings, defeated Danielle Wolf (6-0, 6-0) quickly before fellow classmate Hamlin took down Mary Beth Hurley (6-1, 6-1) to give Duke the upper hand.
The Buckeyes responded with wins on courts three and one, respectively, as No. 21 Kelly Chen fell to Kolie Allen (6-1, 4-6, 1-6). Freshman Maria Mateas, ranked No. 11 by the ITA, came up short against Isabelle Boulais on court one (5-7, 4-6).
With the match all tied up at two, it came down to courts two and five prior to heading to doubles. Ohio State’s Shiori Fukuda defeated eighth-ranked junior Meible Chi (3-6, 6-3, 6-4) to give the Buckeyes a 3-2 lead. Chi fought back to win three-straight games in the third set but came up just short to Fukuda.
It all came down to freshman Margaryta Bilokin on court five as she pulled out the 6-4, 5-7, 6-4 win over No. 99 Luna Dormet to send the match to the deciding doubles point. Bilokin lost a tough second set 5-7 and overcame a third set that was tied three times.
“I thought as there was more pressure on her [Margaryta] at the end, she played better,” Ashworth said. “She won the majority of those last points at the net and it’s great to see … not only for her own confidence but to come through in that situation was really good to see. It was great for her teammates to see that from her as well.”
The Blue Devils secured the doubles point for the sixth time this season and were led by the senior duo of McCarthy and Hamlin who brought the energy and set the tone for the rest of the match.
McCarthy and Hamlin completed their match first by cruising to victory on court two with a 6-1 win over Dormet and Allen minutes before Chen and Chi secured the win for the Blue Devils on court three with a 6-2 victory over Wolf and Hurley.
The Blue Devils will take on seventh-ranked and sixth-seeded Pepperdine in the quarterfinals.
#GoDuke | #AllUs
Tennis Match Results
Ohio State vs Duke
Feb 08, 2019 at Seattle, Wash.
(Nordstrom Tennis Center)
#4 Duke 4, #16 Ohio State 3
1. Isabelle Boulais (OSU) def. #11 Maria Mateas (DU) 7-5, 6-4
2. Shiori Fukuda (OSU) def. #8 Meible Chi (DU) 3-6, 6-3, 6-4
3. Kolie Allen (OSU) def. #21 Kelly Chen (DU) 1-6, 6-4, 6-1
4. #100 Kaitlyn McCarthy (DU) def. Danielle Wolf (OSU) 6-0, 6-0
5. Margaryta Bilokin (DU) def. #99 Luna Dormet (OSU) 6-4, 5-7, 6-4
6. Ellyse Hamlin (DU) def. Mary Beth Hurley (OSU) 6-1, 6-1
1. #29 Shiori Fukuda/Isabelle Boulais (OSU) def. #30 Maria Mateas/Margaryta Bilokin (DU) 6-1
2. Ellyse Hamlin/Kaitlyn McCarthy (DU) def. Luna Dormet/Kolie Allen (OSU) 6-1
3. Kelly Chen/Meible Chi (DU) def. Danielle Wolf/Mary Beth Hurley (OSU) 6-2
Ohio State 2-2; National ranking #16
Duke 6-0; National ranking #4
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1,3); Singles (4,6,3,1,2,5)