NORFOLK, Va., April 2, 2011 - Delaware won the final two singles matches in three sets each to rally for a 4-3 Colonial Athletic Association women's tennis victory against James Madison on Saturday afternoon at Old Dominion's Folkes-Stevens Tennis Center.
The Blue Hens (8-3, 2-2 CAA) took the early lead after sweeping doubles play, but the Dukes (9-7, 0-4 CAA) claimed three of the first four singles matches to grab a 3-2 advantage, before UD won the final two matches to seal the win.
Despite falling in all three doubles matches, JMU took two of the three to tie-break situations. At No. 1, Megan Doran and Samantha Carnall defeated junior Kinsey Pate (Matthews, N.C./Butler) and sophomore Michelle Nguyen (Springfield, Va./South County), 8-6.
UD claimed the doubles point when Dorothy Safron and Montse Ripoll outlasted sophomore Katherine Bulling (Loveland, Ohio/Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy) and freshman Ruxandra Andriescu (Brampton, Ontario/Turner Fenton), 9-8 (7-5).
Ivana Petrich and Sophie Sjoberg-Sundstrom completed doubles action with a narrow 9-8 (9-7) win versus sophomore Megan Douglass (Wilton, Conn./St. Luke's) and freshman Jacqueline Palmucci (Aurora, Colo./Cherokee Trail) at No. 3.
Delaware doubled its lead to 2-0 when Safron downed Nguyen, 6-4, 6-3 at No. 2, but the Dukes responded with three singles victories in a row.
Bulling took a 6-4, 6-2 win from Olivia Heim at No. 5 to trim UD's lead in half, and Palmucci knotted the dual match at 2-2 with her 6-1, 6-1 victory at No. 3 against Carnall.
Pate gave JMU its only lead of the day after rallying at No. 1 with her triumph over Doran, 2-6, 6-3, 6-3. Petrich squared the match at 3-3 with a 6-2, 4-6, 6-2 win versus Douglass at No. 4.
In the final match, senior Kristin Nimitz (Richmond, Va./Deep Run) took the first set in a tie-break, but Ripoll came back in sets two and three to give Delaware the team victory. Ripoll won by a score of 6-7 (2-7), 6-2, 6-1.
The Dukes return to action Sunday morning when they host league-foe George Mason at Hillside Courts at 11 a.m.
Delaware 4, James Madison 3
Doubles (Order 1,2,3)
1. Doran/Carnall (DEL) def. Pate/Nguyen 8-6
2. Safron/Ripoll (DEL) def. Bulling/Andriescu 9-8 (7-5)
3. Petrich/Sjoberg-Sundstrom (DEL) def. Douglass/Palmucci 9-8 (9-7)
Singles (Order 2,5,3,1,4,6)
1. Kinsey Pate (JMU) def. Megan Doran 2-6, 6-3, 6-3
2. Dorothy Safron (DEL) def. Michelle Nguyen 6-4, 6-3
3. Jacqueline Palmucci (JMU) def. Samantha Carnall 6-1, 6-1
4. Ivana Petrich (DEL) def. Megan Douglass 6-2, 4-6, 6-2
5. Katherine Bulling (JMU) def. Olivia Heim 6-4, 6-2
6. Montse Ripoll (DEL) def. Kristin Nimitz 6-7 (2-7), 6-2, 6-1