Goldsmith Powers No. 6 Aggies Past Vanderbilt in SEC Tournament Quarterfinals – Texas A&M Athletics

GAINESVILLE, Fla.Jayci Goldsmith came away with a hard-fought second-set tiebreaker to close out her match against Marcella Cruz, and the No. 6 Texas A&M women’s tennis team defeated the Vanderbilt Commodores by a 4-2 margin Friday afternoon in the SEC Women’s Tennis Championship Quarterfinals from Linder Stadium at the Alfred A. Ring Tennis Complex.

A&M continues its record-setting pace in the 2022 dual match campaign, improving to 28-1 overall. The Aggies have won each of their last 19 matches and have gone undefeated since a heartbreaking 4-3 loss to then-No. 4 Cal during the ITA National Women’s Team Indoor Championships on February 11. The Maroon & White reach the semifinals of the SEC Women’s Tennis Championships for the third consecutive time dating back to the 2019 SEC Tournament in Bryan-College Station. In defeat, Vanderbilt concludes its trip in the Sunshine State with a 1-1 ledger in the conference tournament and a 16-9 record overall.

The Aggies opened the match with an all-out blitz in the doubles competition, coasting to a pair of wins at the No. 1 and No. 3 lines while holding a significant edge on court two. Renee McBryde and Gianna Pielet were first off the courts, as the Aggie duo rolled to an early 5-0 lead before securing a 6-2 victory to get things started. The nation’s third-ranked doubles tandem of Jayci Goldsmith and Tatiana Makarova dismantled No. 40 Anna Ross and Holly Staff on court one, logging a decisive 6-1 result. No. 47 Carson Branstine and Mary Stoiana held a commanding 5-2 lead over Marcella Cruz and Amy Stevens, but the match went unfinished as the doubles point was clinched.

The Aggies opened the singles competition by winning a quartet of first sets, taking the overall match following victories on courts one, two and four. No. 20 Makarova raced past No. 91 Staff in an impressive 6-0, 6-2 match to put A&M ahead by a 2-0 margin. No. 15 Branstine cruised past No. 41 Ross in the top-line matchup by a 6-2, 6-1 score to extend the lead to three. The Commodores then mounted a comeback, battling for a pair of wins at the bottom of the lineup. Kourkina defeated Pielet by a 6-3, 6-1 edge on court five, and Stevens notched a straight set decision over Katya Townsend on court six to make it a 3-2 Aggie lead. With the match in the balance, Goldsmith stepped up in the big moments during the second-set tiebreaker after logging a 6-4 win in the opening frame. The senior outlasted Cruz by a 7-4 edge in the deciding breaker and won each of the last three points to take the match by a 6-4, 7-6 (4) margin. No. 70 Stoiana led No. 86 Anessa Lee, but their match remained unfinished following the conclusion of the team competition.

In individual accolades, Makarova became the fourth singles player in program history to reach the century mark in career victories. The graduate now stands in a tie for fourth with Aggie great Anna Blagodarova in career singles wins and sits one doubles win back from tying Anna Lubinsky for No. 2 in all-time doubles victories. Makarova is just the third Aggie in program-history to reach the century club in both singles and doubles in the Brazos Valley, joining Nicki Mechem and Anna Lubinsky. Goldsmith, meanwhile, recorded her third deciding point in the 2022 season and her her first since defeating Carly Briggs of Florida to secure the team match in early March.

UP NEXT
Top-seeded and sixth-ranked Texas A&M continues its stay in the Sunshine State of Florida, as the Aggies enter the semifinals of the 2022 Southeastern Conference Women’s Tennis Championships. A&M will face the fourth-seeded and 15th-ranked Florida Gators in a noon (ET) first serve from Linder Stadium at the Alfred A. Ring Tennis Complex.

Saturday’s semifinal test will be broadcast to a worldwide audience via SEC Network +, with Kevin Skinner and Jill Craybas calling the action. Authenticated subscribers can access the live broadcast of the match via the ESPN app on their computers, mobile phones, tablets, smart TVs and other connected devices. Live stats provided by the University of Florida and the Southeastern Conference are available by clicking here.

POSTMATCH QUOTES
TEXAS A&M QUOTES
Head Coach Mark Weaver
On Friday’s test against Vanderbilt and looking ahead…

“We are always pleased when we are able to put four points up there on the board. I knew it would be a challenging match in the sense that Vanderbilt had already played a dual match here on these courts this week and it was our first match here. For the most part we played pretty well. We played excellent tennis at all three doubles lines and played well in two-thirds of our singles positions. With that being said, we need all three doubles and all six singles ready to go tomorrow against a tough hometown environment here in Florida. “

Junior Carson Branstine
On her performance in A & M’s quarterfinal matchup…

“I think that it was just really routine for us today. Mary (Stoiana) and I stuck to what worked in doubles and did all of the basic things right. We were definitely on our way to winning that match but I am glad that the other girls got the wins. In singles, it was a lot of the same things. I felt great and I was really disciplined throughout the entire match. I was glad that I was able to have a routine match so I could help our team. I look forward to the rest of the weekend. “

TENNIS MATCH RESULTS
# 6 Texas A&M 4, Vanderbilt 2
SEC Women’s Tennis Championships – Quarterfinals
Linder Stadium at Ring Tennis Complex – Gainesville, Florida
SINGLES

1. # 15 Carson Branstine (TAMU) def. # 41 Anna Ross (VANDY) 6-2, 6-1
2. # 20 Tatiana Makarova (TAMU) def. # 91 Holly Staff (VANDY) 6-0, 6-2
3. # 70 Mary Stoiana (TAMU) vs. # 86 Anessa Lee (VANDY) 6-4, 4-3, unfinished
4. Jayci Goldsmith (TAMU) def. Marcella Cruz (VANDY) 6-4, 7-6 (4)
5. Dasha Kourkina (VANDY) def. Gianna Pielet (TAMU) 6-3, 6-1
6. Amy Stevens (VANDY) def. Katya Townsend (TAMU) 6-3, 6-3

DOUBLES

1. # 3 Jayci Goldsmith / Tatiana Makarova (TAMU) def. # 40 Anna Ross / Holly Staff (VANDY) 6-1
2. # 47 Carson Branstine / Mary Stoiana (TAMU) vs. Marcella Cruz / Amy Stevens (VANDY) 5-2, unfinished
3. Renee McBryde / Gianna Pielet (TAMU) def. Dasha Kourkina / MaryAnn Rompf (VANDY) 6-2

Order of Finish: Doubles (3.1); Singles (2,1,5,6,4 *)

POSTMATCH NOTES

  • Texas A&M improves to 28-1 overall, a program record for victories in a single season, and was victorious in its first match of the 2022 SEC Women’s Tennis Championships. A&M owns the No. 6 ranking according to the Intercollegiate Tennis Association and is rated No. 3 for the United States Tennis Association.
  • A&M advances to the SEC Women’s Tennis Championships Semifinals for the third consecutive tournament.
  • Vanderbilt drops to 16-9 overall on the season and concludes its stay in Florida with a 1-1 ledger in the conference tournament. The Commodores reached the quarterfinals with a 4-2 win over ninth-seeded Ole Miss on Thursday afternoon.
  • The Aggies continue to cut into the Vanderbilt lead in the all-time series, with the Commodores now leading by a 12-7 edge. A&M has outscored Vanderbilt by a 10-3 margin in 2022.
  • Texas A&M head coach Mark Weaver improves to 138-56 all-time in his coaching career in Aggieland, which dates back to the 2015-16 academic year.

FOLLOW THE AGGIES

Visit 12thman.com for more information on Texas A&M women’s tennis. Fans can keep up to date with the A&M women’s tennis team on Facebook, Instagram, and on Twitter by following @AggieWTEN.

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