The University of Miami women’s tennis team came up just short in the Atlantic Coast Conference finals, falling 4-2 to North Carolina in the title match Sunday in Cary, North Carolina.
Seventh-ranked and second-seeded Miami (19-5) tied the match at No. 1 and No. 2, but second-ranked and top-seeded North Carolina (29-2, 14-0) was able to close it out and earn the conference crown.
The defeat snapped the Hurricanes’ longest winning streak of the past decade at 15 matches. Miami had not been on the short side of a contest since falling in a 4-3 decision Feb. 28 at then-ninth-ranked Duke.
The Hurricanes struck first in doubles, as sophomore Sinead Lohan and freshman Clara Tanielian raced out to a 5-0 lead on No. 89 Jessie Aney and Kate Vialle, en route to a 6-2 victory.
The fourth-ranked pair of Hayley Carter and Whitney Kay from North Carolina tied the doubles score with a 6-1 win over the ninth-ranked duo of senior Stephanie Wagner and sophomore Wendy Zhang. The Tar Heels clinched the doubles point when Ashley Dai and Chloe Ouellet-Pizer defeated sophomore Silvia Fuentes and freshman Ana Madcur, 6-2.
This was the sixth ACC Championship title match appearance for the Hurricanes in their 12 years in the conference.
Miami will now await its NCAA team championship draw. The selection show is May 3 at 5 p.m.
▪ Rice 4, FIU 1: Rice won its fourth consecutive Conference USA title after dismantling top seed FIU in the championship match in Mufreesboro, Tennessee. The Owls started off strong, claiming the doubles point behind Savannah Durkin and Solo Zinko on court three. Zinko, who was winning in the No. 6 singles slot before the match was called, is the sole member of the squad to win four-straight conference championships.
▪ FAU 9, FIU 1: The No. 17 Owls avoided a three-game sweep at FIU. The Owls salvaged the series finale behind 12 hits and an efficient start from left-hander Sean Labsan.
After a pair of one-run wins by the Panthers (19-22, 7-11 Conference USA), the Owls (28-10, 12-6) broke open a close game with a five-run sixth inning. The Owls sent 10 batters to the plate in the sixth to score five runs on just three hits but were helped by three FIU errors.
Labsan pitched five shutout innings, allowed four hits, two walks and struck out five batters.
FIU 3, Florida Golf Coast 1: Freshman pitcher Abby Summers tossed her fourth complete game of the season, allowing only five hits in a victory over the Eagles in Fort Myers. The win gave the Panthers (25-24) the series victory over the Eagles (24-25).
Junior first baseman Stephanie Texeira doubled for the first hit of the game for FIU, then scored one out later on an RBI single to right center by freshman Lauren Williams to give the Panthers a 1-0 lead in the fourth inning. The Panthers added two runs in the fifth on three hits and an FGCU error. Texeira and junior center fielder Gabby Spallone had RBI singles in the frame.