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No. 4 Irish Drop Heartbreaker To No. 23 Arkansas, 4-3
Julie Sabacinski posted her second straight dual victory with a straight-sets victory over Valentina Starkova of Arkansas at No. 6 singles, 6-4, 6-1.
 
Julie Sabacinski posted her second straight dual victory with a straight-sets victory over Valentina Starkova of Arkansas at No. 6 singles, 6-4, 6-1.

Jan. 30, 2011

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NOTRE DAME, Ind. - The fourth-ranked University of Notre Dame women's tennis team dropped a hard-fought, 4-3 decision to 23rd-ranked Arkansas on Sunday at the Eck Tennis Pavilion. The loss marks the first for the team during the 2010-11 dual campaign, dropping the team to 2-1 on the early season.

Notre Dame fell behind early after dropping the doubles point to the Razorbacks to get the match underway. Kristy Frilling (Sidney, Ohio) and Shannon Mathews (Birmingham, Mich.) were unable to get it going in their doubles match at the No. 1 position, falling to the Arkansas pairing of Claudine Paulson and Anouk Tigu, 8-2.

Kristen Rafael (Grand Prairie, Texas) and Julie Sabacinski (Plantation, Fla.) fell at No. 3 doubles to the team of Jade Frampton and Valentina Starkova, 9-8 (7-4), to secure the doubles point for the Razorbacks. The Irish pushed out to a 4-1 lead in the tiebreak, before Arkansas' duo reeled off the final six points.

With the doubles point clinched, the match between Jennifer Kellner (Smithtown, N.Y.) and Chrissie McGaffigan (Davenport, Iowa) of Notre Dame and Kate Lukomskaya and Stephanie Roy of Arkansas was abandoned with the Irish leading 6-5.

Singles saw both teams go back and forth throughout the six matches. The first match to conclude saw Mathews take care of Lukomskaya at No. 2 singles, dropping only one game in a straight-sets victory, 6-1, 6-0.

Rafael then fell at No. 3 singles to Claudine Paulson in straight sets, 6-3, 6-0 to give the Razorbacks the lead back at 2-1. However, ninth-ranked Frilling quickly tied it up after taking care 26th-ranked Tigu at No. 1 singles, 6-3, 6-1. The Irish junior pulled away with ease after Tigu injured her ankle with Frilling leading the first set 5-3.

With the match all square, Notre Dame pulled ahead for the first time on the day when Sabacinski dispatched Starkova at No. 6 singles, 6-4, 6-1, for her second-consecutive dual match victory.

However, momentum was quickly lost as the Razorbacks closed out the final two matches at No. 4 and No. 5 singles to claim the match. McGaffigan fell to Emily Carbone at No. 4, 6-2, 6-4, while Kellner couldn't hold on to her early lead over Roy at No. 5, falling in three sets, 2-6, 6-1, 6-0.

The Irish return to action next weekend as they take on North Carolina at noon on Saturday (Feb. 5) at the Cone-Kenfield Center in Chapel Hill, N.C. before battling Wake Forest at 11 a.m. (ET) on Sunday (Feb. 6) at Leighton Stadium in Winston-Salem, N.C.

Arkansas vs Notre Dame
Jan 30, 2011 at Notre Dame, Ind.
#23 Arkansas 4, #4 Notre Dame 3

Singles competition

1. #9 Kristy Frilling (ND) def. #26 Anouk Tigu (ARK) 6-3, 6-1 2. #104 Shannon Mathews (ND) def. Kate Lukomskaya (ARK) 6-1, 6-0 3. Claudine Paulson (ARK) def. #79 Kristen Rafael (ND) 6-3, 6-0 4. Emily Carbone (ARK) def. #78 Chrissie McGaffigan (ND) 6-2, 6-4 5. Stephanie Roy (ARK) def. #106 Jennifer Kellner (ND) 2-6, 6-1, 6-0 6. Julie Sabacinski (ND) def. Valentina Starkova (ARK) 6-4, 6-1

Doubles competition

1. Claudine Paulson/Anouk Tigu (ARK) def. Kristy Frilling/Shannon Mathews (ND) 8-2 2. Jennifer Kellner/Chrissie McGaffigan (ND) vs. Kate Lukomskaya/Stephanie Roy (ARK) 6-5, unfinished 3. Jade Frampton/Valentina Starkova (ARK) def. Kristen Rafael/Julie Sabacinski (ND) 9-8 (7-4)

Match Notes:

Arkansas 4-0; National ranking #23 Notre Dame 2-1; National ranking #4 Order of finish: Doubles (1,3); Singles (2,3,1,6,4,5)

--ND--
 

 

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February 12
W, 4-3
Pittsburgh
Notre Dame, Ind. (Eck Tennis Pavilion)
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February 14
1:00 PM
Michigan
Ann Arbor, Mich. (Varsity Tennis Center)
February 17
TBA
Purdue
West Lafayette, Ind. (Schwartz Tennis Center)
February 20
11:00 AM
Indiana
Notre Dame, Ind. (Eck Tennis Pavilion)

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February 21
2:00 PM
Louisville
Notre Dame, Ind. (Eck Tennis Pavilion)

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February 26
TBA
Boston College
Boston, Mass. (TBA)
February 28
TBA
Syracuse
Syracuse, N.Y. (Drumlins Tennis Center)
March 6
TBA
Miami
Coral Gables, Fla. (Neil Schiff Tennis Center)
March 8
9:00 AM
East Carolina
Puerto Rico (TBA)
March 8
3:00 PM
LIU Brooklyn
Puerto Rico (TBA)
March 18
3:30 PM
Wake Forest
Notre Dame, Ind. (Eck Tennis Pavilion)

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March 24
TBA
North Carolina State
Raleigh, N.C. (J.W. Isenhour Tennis Center)
March 26
11:00 AM
North Carolina
Chapel Hill, N.C. (Cone-Kenfield Tennis Center)
April 1
3:30 PM
Florida State
Notre Dame, Ind. (Eck Tennis Pavilion or Courtney Tennis Center)

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April 3
TBA
Duke
Durham, N.C. (Ambler Tennis Center)
April 8
3:30 PM
Clemson
Notre Dame, Ind. (Eck Tennis Pavilion or Courtney Tennis Center)

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April 10
12:00 PM
Georgia Tech
Notre Dame, Ind. (Eck Tennis Pavilion or Courtney Tennis Center)

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April 15
3:30 PM
Virginia Tech
Notre Dame, Ind. (Eck Tennis Pavilion or Courtney Tennis Center)

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April 17
TBA
Virginia
Charlottesville, Virginia (Snyder Tennis Complex)
April 20
All Day
ACC Championship
Cary, N.C. (Cary Tennis Center)
April 21
All Day
ACC Championship
Cary, N.C. (Cary Tennis Center)
April 22
All Day
ACC Championship
Cary, N.C. (Cary Tennis Center)
April 23
All Day
ACC Championship
Cary, N.C. (Cary Tennis Center)
April 24
All Day
ACC Championship
Cary, N.C. (Cary Tennis Center)

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