Feb. 11, 2005
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Senior Day for the Purdue women's tennis team is scheduled for April 24. But on Feb. 11, the Boilermaker seniors had their day in a 4-3 upset of No. 19 Texas A&M at the Lafayette Sports Center. Purdue, currently ranked 46th, last beat a team ranked in the top 20 on March 7, 2004, when it upset No. 17 Illinois 4-3 in Lafayette.
With the win, Purdue improved to 2-2. The Aggies, meanwhile, fell to 1-6. Their five previous losses came to No. 4 UCLA, No. 5 Northwestern, No. 8 Duke, No. 14 Kentucky and No. 34 Harvard.
The Boilermakers got on the scoreboard quickly, as the freshmen doubles pair of Brooke Beier and Stephanie Wooten polished off Marisa Druss and Sera Iwinski 8-1 at No. 3.
From that point on, it was all seniors for Purdue. To clinch the doubles point, fourth-year players Lara Burgarello and Shawna Zuccarini teamed for an 8-1 upset of the 28th-ranked Aggie tandem of Anna Lubinsky and Helga Vieira.
Purdue took a 1-0 lead into singles, but Texas A&M soon tied the score at 1-all with a win by Vieira over Wooten at No. 2. Moments later, however, senior Walgenbach walked off the No. 5 court with a 6-0, 6-1 victory over Druss.
Next came a win from Burgarello, who beat Iwinski 7-5, 6-3 at No. 6.
Texas A&M tied the score at 3-3 following wins at No. 4 and No. 1, leaving the match to be decided on court No. 3. With all eyes on her, Zuccarini delivered a 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 win over her freshman opponent, Anna Blagodarova. She won the tiebreaker 7-1, winning the last seven points consecutively.
Zuccarini, who has watched her team drop its only two matches of the year by 4-3 scores, said winning her match was the only alternative.
"I was not going to lose," Zuccarini said.
Zuccarini felt little pressure with the match outcome resting on her shoulders.
"I like to be in that position because I feel like I have some control," Zuccarini said.
Purdue head coach Mat Iandolo had no doubt Zuccarini would pull out the win.
"When Shawna's on her game, especially at home indoors, it is very, very difficult to beat her," Iandolo said.
Zuccarini included, Iandolo credited the senior class for delivering one of the biggest wins in program history.
"I can't say enough about our seniors. They really stepped it up and played with a lot of heart," Iandolo said.
Purdue will get another chance to beat a top-ranked team Sunday, when it plays host to No. 30 Wake Forest at the Lafayette Sports Center. The match is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m.
#46 Purdue 4, #19 Texas A&M 3
1. Anna Lubinsky (TAM) def. #71 Hala Sufi (PU) 6-4, 1-6, 6-3
2. #47 Helga Vieira (TAM) def. Stephanie Wooten (PU) 6-2, 6-0
3. Shawna Zuccarini (PU) def. Anna Blagodarova (TAM) 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (1)*
4. Tiffany Clifford (TAM) def. Alyssa Rodriguez (PU) 6-4, 6-4
5. Amy Walgenbach (PU) def. Marisa Druss (TAM) 6-0, 6-1
6. Lara Burgarello (PU) def. Sera Iwinski (TAM) 7-5, 6-3
1. Burgarello/Zuccarini (PU) def. #28 Lubinsky/Vieira (TAM) 8-1
2. Blagodarova/Clifford (TAM) def. Rodriguez/Sufi (PU) 8-3
3. Brooke Beier/Wooten (PU) def. Druss/Iwinski (TAM) 8-1
Order of singles finish: 2, 5, 6, 4, 1, 3
Order of doubles finish: 3, 1, 2
* Denotes match-clinching win.
Texas A&M: 1-6
- P -