BLACKSBURG, Va. - The No. 35 Florida State (7-5, 2-2) women’s tennis team continued their winning ways as the Seminoles defeated their second ranked ACC opponent- No. 57 Virginia Tech (9-8, 1-3) on Saturday afternoon at the Burrows-Burleson Tennis Center.
“The team needed a day just like today turned out to be,” said head coach Jennifer Hyde. “We were down the doubles point and then quickly down three first sets in singles. At one point during the match, things looked very grim for us. But just then, the girls created a tremendous momentum swing for themselves on 3 or 4 different courts and from that point on I felt like we were in control. We fought ourselves out of a pretty big hole today, and I could not be more proud of how the girls finished their matches today.”
Seminole senior Federica Suess won the 100th mach of her career. It was quite the milestone for the senior captain.
"Fede got her 100th win today in typical Fede fashion," said Hyde. "Since her freshman year, she has always been someone who never dies out there on court. She was down a set, and down 1-5 in the second set. The easy thing to do in that scenario is roll over, but one thing I can say about Fede is that option is not for her. It hasn’t been during her career, and that just won’t change. She is a fighter and has the heart of champ."
After allowing Virginia Tech to control the doubles portion of the match with their three wins that earned them the doubles point going into singles, the Seminoles regrouped to strategize what steps were necessary in winning against the league foe. Senior Federica Suess and sophomore Noemie Scharle (Colmar-berg, Luxembourg) were the strongest doubles threat to the Hokies as they pushed the opposition 8-7.
“The indoor courts at VA Tech are by far the fastest surface we have ever seen, and the girls did a good job of making some adjustments for that," Hyde said. "It's a complete different ball game inside on slick courts and at a higher altitude than what is normal for us. Fortunately, the girls used no excuses today and competed very well, especially down the stretch.”
It appeared like it was going to be a long day when Virginia Tech picked up its first and only win in singles as No. 1 Yazmin Hamza (Sr., Cairo Egypt) defeated Florida State’s Francesca Segarelli, 6-1,6- The tide turned when Freshman Ruth Seaborne defeated Holly Johnson (Sr., Tallahassee, Fla.) in the No. 4 match, 6-2, 6-2.
It was all Seminoles from there on out as the Garnet and Gold won on five of the six courts. Scharle went to work again on singles winning her match over Tea Ivanovic (Fr., Antwer, Belgium) 6-3, 6-3. Senior leaderKatie Rybakova followed suit taking the No. 2 match from Martha Blakely (Jr., Reading, Pa.), winning in three sets 0-6, 7-6, 6-1. To give the Seminoles the 3-2 lead.
"Katie was down a set and 3-5 down in the second set today," said Hyde. "To see your seniors dig themselves out of a hole like that and come out on top speaks volumes. The confidence to be gained from that, you really can’t put a price tag on it."
Sophomore Amy Sargeant to the No. 6 spot, 6-2, 2-6, 7-5 Isel Martinez-Marcos (Fr., Esparreguera, Spain) to give the Seminoles the fourth point and the match. Senior Federica Suess finished the day in style winning her 100th match of her career over Shannon Betts (VT) 5-7, 7-5, 6-3 on court five.
The Seminoles will not have much time to celebrate with a quick turnaround as they play No. 17 Virginia (13-4, 2-2) on Sunday, March 27 at 11:00 a.m.
“We have a big opportunity against Virginia tomorrow," said Hyde. "This team is hungry for this shot and they will be ready. “
1. Yazmin Hamza (VT) def. Francesca Segarelli (FSU) 6-1, 6-4
2. Katie Rybakova (FSU) def. Martha Blakely (VT) 0-6, 7-6, 6-1
3. Noemie Scharle (FSU) def. Tea Ivanovic (VT) 6-3, 6-3
4. Ruth Seaborne (FSU) def. Holly Johnson (VT)6-2, 6-2
5. Frederica Suess (FSU) def. Shannon Betts (VT) 5-7, 7-5, 6-3
6. Amy Sargeant (FSU) def. Isel Martinez-Marcos (VT) 6-2, 2-6, 7-5
Order to finish: 1, 4, 3, 2, 6*, 5
1. Hazma/Johnson (VT) def. Scharle/Suess (FSU) 8-7
2. Blakely/Rauscher (VT) def. Sargeant/Segarelli (FSU) 8-5
3. Betts/Blow (VT) def. Seaborne/Rybakova (FSU) 8-4
Order to finish: 2, 3*, 1