Women's Tennis Edged by No. 20 Auburn, 4-3

by Cari Gold
Women's Tennis Edged by No. 20 Auburn, 4-3

BATON ROUGE – The LSU women’s tennis team fell 4-3 to No. 20 Auburn on Sunday afternoon.
LSU head coach Julia sell believes the 7-6 (0-4 SEC) Lady Tigers battled hard and showed heart throughout the match. 
“That’s the best that we’ve competed all year,” said Sell.  “With all the youth on our team, we’ve talked a lot about the difference between trying and giving effort and actually competing.  This is the first time where I felt like, across the board, we competed.”
Auburn is now 14-2 (4-0 SEC) on the season.
The match was a test of endurance for both sides as four of the six singles matches were decided in three sets, including four tiebreakers. 
On court one in singles, LSU’s Joana Vale Costa took the lead early and never looked back as she secured a win over No. 29 Pleun Burgmans 6-3, 6-4.  This marks Vale Costa’s first win over a ranked opponent while wearing Purple and Gold. 
“No one has seen the best of Joana (Vale Costa) yet,” said Sell.  “She played well today, but I know she still has a few levels in her.”
On court five, LSU’s Ella Taylor got off to a slow start and lost the first set.  The sophomore battled back, though, and defeated Reka Muller 2-6, 6-1, 6-1. 
On court four, Abigail Owens fell in the first set and was down 4-1 in the second set when she found her stride and came back to top Michala Kucharova 1-6, 7-6 (7-4), 6-2. 
After splitting the first two sets, LSU’s Noel Scott was down 4-1 in the third set and came back to tie it at 4-4.  Ultimately, Scott fell to No. 114 Emily Flickinger 6-7 (7-9), 7-6 (7-3), 6-4.
Skylar Holloway fell to Jackie Kasler 6-4, 6-0 on court six, while Gabrielle Otero fell to Paula de Man 7-5, 4-6, 7-6 (7-4) on court three.   
In doubles, LSU and Auburn split the first two courts as LSU’s Vale Costa and Holloway fell to No. 36 Pleun Burgmans and Emily Flickinger 8-3 on court one, while the duo of Owens and Otero topped Michala Kucharova and Reka Muller 8-5 on court three. 
Auburn won the doubles point as LSU’s Scott and partner Taylor fell 8-5 to Jen Pfeifler and Paula De Man.    
The Lady Tigers take the court again on Friday, March 14 as they take on the Missouri Tigers in Columbia, Mo. at 5:00 p.m. CT. 
Follow the Lady Tigers on Twitter @lsuwten and @LSUJuliaSell, on Instagram @LSUWTen and on Facebook atwww.Facebook.com/lsuwten. 
#20 Auburn 4, #47 LSU 3
Singles competition
1. Joana Vale Costa (LSU) def. #29 Pleun Burgmans (AU) 6-3, 6-0
2. #114 Emily Flickinger (AU) def. #87 Noel Scott (LSU) 6-7 (7-9), 7-6 (7-3), 6-4
3. Paula de Man (AU) def. Gabrielle Otero (LSU) 5-7, 6-4, 7-6 (7-4)
4. Abigail Owens (LSU) def. Michala Kucharova (AU) 1-6, 7-6 (7-4), 6-2
5. Ella Taylor (LSU) def. Reka Muller (AU) 2-6, 6-1, 6-1
6. Jackie Kasler (AU) def. Skylar Holloway (LSU) 6-4, 6-0
Doubles competition
1. #26 Pleun Burgmans/Emily Flickinger (AU) def. Joana Vale Costa/Skylar Holloway (LSU) 8-3
2. Michala Kucharova/Reka Muller (AU) def. Noel Scott/Ella Taylor (LSU) 8-5
3. Gabrielle Otero/Abigail Owens (LSU) def. Jen Pfeifler/Paula de Man (AU) 8-5