Photographer: Kristofer Sims

Auburn Advances to the NCAA Women's Tennis Tournament Sweet 16

Auburn rallied to defeat Florida State to win the AU regional and advance in the NCAA Women's Tennis Tournament.

Alannah Griffin (above) is excited as her team defeated the FSU Seminoles on Saturday at the Yarbrough Tennis Center. She has won six consecutive singles matches.

Auburn, Ala.--After dropping the doubles point and losing four of six opening sets in singles, the Auburn women’s tennis rallied to defeat Florida State 4-2 and earn a spot in the NCAA Tournament Sweet 16.

Sophomore Alannah Griffin came back at No. 5 singles 2-6, 6-2, 6-3 vs. Andrea Garcia put Auburn ahead 3-2 and freshman Georgie Axon closed out the victory with a 7-5, 7-5 win at No. 4 singles over Daniela Schippers. Axon was down 2-5 in set two before closing out her opponent by winning the final five games of the match.

The Tigers will have a rematch vs. No. 7 ranked Texas Tech on Friday in Athens, Ga. Auburn defeated the Red Raiders 4-2 in the finals of the Blue-Gray Classic in Montgomery on Feb. 25th.

“This was a great college tennis match,” Auburn coach Lauren Spencer said. “I can’t say enough about how hard our girls fought today. We trailed early after dropping the first set in four of six sets and we just kept fighting. We appreciate the fan support today and we hope we can get that kind of support in Athens next weekend.”

Auburn’s first win on Saturday was at No. 2 singles where junior Andie Dikosavljevic overpowered Nandi Das 6-1, 6-2.

The Tigers, who are ranked No. 11 nationally, also got a victory at No. 3 singles with Taylor Russo rallying for a 2-6, 6-1, 6-1 victory over Julia Mikulski.

In addition to winning the doubles point the Seminoles won at No. 6 singles with Ariana Rahmanparast defeating Caroline Turner 6-2, 6-3.

At No. 1 singles Auburn’s Ali Michaud lost the opening set 6-3 to Gabriella Castaneda and was in trouble in set two before evening the match at a set apiece with a 7-6 decision. The junior was up 2-0 in the third set when the Tigers clinched to earn a spot in the Sweet 16 for a second consecutive year.

Auburn, which defeated DePaul 4-0 on Friday to open the tournament, improved to 25-10 with the victory while FSU’s season ended with a 17-12 record.

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