Mia King clinched Wednesday's win over Virginia.
March 13, 2014
ATHENS, Ga.—The No. 12 Georgia women’s tennis team will play host to a pair of conference matches against SEC East rivals this weekend, facing South Carolina on Friday at 4 p.m. and No. 3 Florida on Sunday at 1 p.m. at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex.
The Bulldogs enter this weekend after beating No. 5 Virginia in a marathon match on Wednesday, 4-3.
Admission is free to both matches. Fans can also follow along with live video, live scoring and the live blog on Georgiadogs.com.
• Georgia has beaten South Carolina eight straight times at home, with the last loss home defeat in 1996.
• The Bulldogs last beat Florida at the 2009 SEC Tournament in Starkville, Miss. In 2012, the last time the Gators visiting Athens in the regular season, Georgia fell 4-3 in a match that came down to Lauren Herring in a three-set match at No. 2 singles
• Georgia and Florida have met in four of the last six SEC Tournament Championship Finals.
• Sunday will mark the first time in the regular season since 2007 that Georgia and Florida meet as Top-Five teams. In 2007, the Bulldogs won the regular season matchup 4-3 before beating the Gators 4-1 for the SEC Tournament championship.
• The Bulldogs enter the weekend after defeating No. 5 Virginia 4-3 at home on Wednesday. Georgia has now beaten a Top-Five opponent in two straight years (2013, 4-2 win at Texas A&M). Coincidentally, sophomore Mia King clinched both matches.
• In Wednesday’s match, Herring beat No. 3 Julia Elbaba 6-4, 6-4. For Herring, it was the highest ranked opponent that she’s beaten during her college career.
• The three points that Georgia conceded to Virginia in Wednesday’s match were the first at home since 3/22/13. In that period, the Bulldogs now have a combined 63-3 match score in 11 matches.
On Florida: The No. 3 Gators will travel to Athens for Sunday’s match after playing Tennessee on Friday afternoon. Florida has six ranked singles players, highlighted by No. 8 Olivia Janowicz, No. 22 Alex Cercone and No. 23 Brianna Morgan. In doubles, No. 24 Belinda Woolcock and Sofie Oyen lead three other Florida pairs in the rankings.
Top Dogs: The Georgia women’s tennis team is No. 12 in the ITA’s latest computer rankings of the spring.
The Bulldogs have four singles players and two doubles pairs in the latest individual rankings. Lauren Herring and Silvia Garcia are in the Top-15 at No. 10 and No. 15, respectively. Maho Kowase sits at No. 21 and Lilly Kimbell sits at No. 45. In doubles, Herring and Kowase are ranked No. 3, Kate Fuller and Silvia Garcia broke in at No. 36 and Kimbell and Mia King are No. 60.
The Georgia women’s tennis program is the only in the SEC to have two singles players ranked in the Top-20 and is one of just two schools in the conference to have a doubles pair ranked in the Top-10.
What’s Next? The Bulldogs will hit the road for matches at No. 24 Kentucky and No. 11 Vanderbilt next weekend.
Closing in on 800 wins: The Georgia women’s tennis program is just three wins away from reaching the 800-win mark. The Bulldogs will join Florida (941), Stanford (907) and Indiana (809) in the 800-win club*
Kate The Great: When Silvia Garcia and Kate Fuller won their doubles match against Furman on Feb. 21, Fuller set the record for most career doubles wins in Georgia women’s tennis history. Fuller passes former Georgia greats Naoko Ueshima (2007-10, 109-50), Chelsey Gullickson (2009-12, 106-42) and Cameron Ellis (2008-11, 103-54). Fuller and Garcia are 17-4 this year and 9-1 in their last ten matches. Last season, the Fuller was 40-9 in doubles (26-4 with Garcia).
UGA Looking Forward to Full Third Sets: Much has been made about the ITA’s experimental rules used during the indoor season. The rules shortened matches by shrinking doubles matches to just a six-game set and removing full third sets in singles matches to instead play a 10-point super tiebreak.
After a quick look at the numbers, it’s easy to see why the Bulldogs are surely looking forward to the return of full third sets. Last season, the current Bulldogs won 75 percent of matches that went to a full third set. Over the course of each of their careers, the current Georgia squad wins nearly 70 percent of matches that go the full length.
We Run This State: Earlier this season, Georgia traveled to Atlanta and beat the Yellow Jackets, 7-0. The Bulldogs improved to 22-4 all-time against its in-state rivals. It was Georgia’s first sweep of the Yellow Jackets since 2000.
Lights, Camera, Action! Georgia’s March 30th match vs. Missouri will be carried live on ESPN3 as part of the USTA’s College MatchDay program. In addition to the coverage, the USTA’s 53-foot fan experience trailer will make a trip to Athens.
Non-Conference Success: The Bulldogs had six “guaranteed” non-conference matches, five which against opponents ranked in the latest ITA rankings. Georgia went 5-0 in those matches (No. 75 Elon, No. 51 Arkansas, No. 13 Clemson, No. 25 Georgia Tech, No. 5 Virginia) and added a win over No. 9 Miami (Fla.) at ITA National Team Indoors.
And that’s just non-conference play. The Southeastern Conference is among the best in the country with six ranked teams, five (No. 3 Florida, No. 7 Texas A&M, No. 8 Alabama, No. 11 Vanderbilt, No. No. 12 Georgia) are in the Top-12.
Familiar Faces: The 2013-14 Bulldog squad returns 87 percent of last season’s singles wins and 83 percent of last season’s doubles victories. It returns 98 percent of its ranked wins in both singles and doubles. Georgia will be led by three seniors in Kate Fuller, Lilly Kimbell and Maho Kowase. Junior Lauren Herring rounds out Georgia’s upperclassmen.
It’s a Family Affair: Georgia welcomes third-generation Bulldog Caroline Brinson to the team this spring. The New Orleans native’s grandfather, Vernon Brinson, played baseball at Georgia from 1958-59, and her mother, the former Elizabeth Alexander, played tennis for Georgia from 1988-89, helping the Bulldogs to the SEC Championship in 1989. The New Orleans native is still finishing up her senior year high school requirements while jointly enrolled at UGA. Brinson and doubles partner Lilly Kimbell are 8-1 while she is 4-1 in singles competition.
Where’s Wallace: In 2013, head coach Jeff Wallace became one of just four women’s tennis coaches to reach the 600-win mark. The winningest active coach in women’s college tennis, Wallace ranks fourth on the all-time wins list. There’s a complete list on page five of this notes package.
Wallace’s excellence isn’t just limited to the women’s side as he is just one of six active collegiate tennis coaches (of men or women) to reach the 600–win mark. He is also just the fifth coach in UGA’s history to reach the 600-win mark (A. Landers, L. Harris-Champer, S. Yoculan, D. Magill).
NCAA Championships in Athens: The Dan Magill Tennis Complex will be the home of the NCAA Tennis Championships in May 2014 and 2017. It has played host to the men’s NCAA Championships 24 times and the women’s NCAA Championships three times, in addition to three combined tournaments for a total of 30, most recently in 2012. The women claimed the national title in 1994 and at home in 2000.
The Future is Bright: In addition to Brinson, head coach Jeff Wallace announced the signing of juniors tennis standouts Mariana Gould and Hannah King who will arrive on campus in the fall of 2014. Gould, a five-star blue chip recruit, is ranked No. 19 in the Class of 2014 according to TennisRecruiting.net, and has been ranked as high at No. 5 in her class’s recruiting rankings. Gould’s junior’s career is highlighted by two doubles Gold Balls.
King has sported a Top-100 ITF ranking, and has been ranked in the top five in her recruiting class by Tennisrecruiting.net since her freshman year. She received a wild card into the U.S. Open Junior Championships qualifying this year and, in 2011, played in the main draw of the U.S. Open Junior Championships in both singles and doubles, along with being a finalist in multiple ITF events.
Following Georgia Women’s Tennis: Fans are able to follow each home match through a live blog on Georgiadogs.com. See the website for more details.
After the match, fans can check Georgiadogs.com for post-match highlights and interviews. Fans can also “Like” Georgia Women’s Tennis on Facebook and follow @UGAWomensTennis on Twitter.
*The NCAA and ITA records for program wins are incomplete so these totals are based on a survey of SIDs. Updated 3/13/14.