Home Boys' Lists Girls' Lists Men's Teams Women's Teams News Photos Contributors Links Help Sign-UpOnline Store
Latest News | Categories | Authors | News Archives

News & Features

College Feature
Michigan Women Survive USC Comeback to Reach Team Indoor Championships

"You got this."

Anyone who has ever been to a college tennis match has heard this ubiquitous cheer, as teammates encourage each other to remain confident and positive.

Nguyen and U-M advance to Charlottesville
© ZooTennis.com
Last Sunday at the Varsity Tennis Center in Ann Arbor, the University of Michigan women's team appeared to have a tidy win over the University of Southern California in its grasp in the final match of the ITA's Kickoff Weekend. The road to a berth in the 16-team Indoor Championships got bumpy however, with the upbeat "you got this" nearly turning into the lament "you had that" before Michigan escaped with a 5-2 win.

The eighth-ranked Wolverines certainly looked as if they had the doubles point. Michigan's Brooke Bolender and Denise Muresan beat Danielle Lao and Lindsay Kinstler 8-3 on the No. 2 court, while 18th-ranked Southern California's Kaitlyn Christian and Maria Sanchez took their match with Whitney Taney and Rika Tatsuno 8-4 at No. 1 doubles just a few minutes later.

At the completion of those matches, Michigan's Samantha Critser and Mimi Nguyen were in the midst of a five-game winning streak against Cristala Andrews and Alison Ramos at No. 3 doubles. Down 4-2, Critser and Nguyen took a 7-4 lead, and Nguyen, a sophomore from Long Beach, California, had match point serving at 40-30. She double faulted, USC won the next two points to make it 7-5, and the first signs of uneasiness began to circulate among the small crowd of Michigan supporters. Spirits lifted when Michigan earned two match points in the next game with Ramos serving, but strong net play by Andrews, who hit two volley winners on each match point, kept the Trojans alive.

Critser still had a chance to serve it out at 7-6, but the freshman from California was broken at 15-40, with a series of unforced errors suggesting the young Michigan team was feeling the pressure. Andrews held to give USC the 8-7 lead, and Nguyen followed with a quick hold of her own to send the match and the doubles point to a tiebreaker.

The level of play rose in the tiebreaker, and although Michigan trailed 3-0, they won six of the next seven points. When Critser slammed a backhand winner to make it 6-4, Michigan again had match points. Andrews saved the first with a poach and a volley winner, and when Critser missed a volley on the next point, match point number five had come and gone. There would be no more for Michigan, as Critser missed volleys on the next two points to give the Trojans a 9-8(6) victory and a 1-0 lead.

This Article Is Available Only to Recruiting Advantage members
Please log in to access premium TennisRecruiting.net content.
Register Now For Free!
  • Content Updated Daily
  • Complete Rank Lists
  • Exclusive Articles
  • Recruit Interviews
It's Quick, Easy, and Free!

Dunlop Performance Blue 12 Pack Bag
To purchase this product or for a much more detailed written review, Click Here!
10/27 Anastasiya Joyner chooses Army
10/27 Irena Le chooses Hawaii Hilo
10/26 Jeremy Yuan chooses Chicago
10/26 Sebastian Mermersky chooses Liberty
10/26 Hanna Wikberg chooses Penn State
10/25 Eliza Hafen chooses BYU
10/25 Amanda Nava chooses Saint Joseph's
10/25 Isabelle Porter chooses Stonehill
10/25 Danielle Quevedo chooses New Mexico
10/24 Carling Deehr chooses Western Carolina

Full Listings: Boys' Commits & Girls' Commits

10/26 Get your own limited edition racquet here
10/20 ?????? #ThrowbackThursday with @RafaelNadal and @rogerfederer
10/18 Order your limited edition @Prince_Tennis Bryan Brothers racquet now
10/18 TW REVIEW --> The NEW @WilsonTennis Blade 98 16x19 with Countervail

Page updated on Wednesday, August 10, 2016
Contact our web team with any corrections