Templeton's Clincher Puts Tech Past Oklahoma

Kelsy Garland

Kelsy Garland
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April 23, 2009

NORMAN, Okla. - Simone Templeton took two close 7-6 tiebreaker sets to clinch the match for Texas Tech and halt an Oklahoma comeback as the Lady Raiders defeated the Sooners, 4-3, Thursday afternoon in the first round of the Big 12 Championships at the Headington Family Tennis Center.

Tech and OU had previously played last Sunday with the Sooners posting a 6-1 victory. With the win, the Lady Raiders (10-13) advance to face the No. 2 seed Texas at 3 p.m. Saturday.

After falling behind on all three courts, the Lady Raiders battled back to take victories at both the No. 1 and 3 positions to win the doubles point. Samantha van der Drift and Kelsy Garland took an 8-6 winner at the top spot after trailing the majority of the match. Simone Templeton and Natalie Leitch clinched the point with a close 8-6 victory, overcoming an early 4-2 deficit in the process.

Tech would keep the momentum into singles as Stefanie Peana and Leitch raced out to early wins at the No. 5 and 4 positions. Peana found little trouble disposing of Peta Maree Lancaster, 6-2, 6-1, while Leitch took a straight set winner of over Kristina Radan, 6-2, 6-4.

OU would begin its comeback from there as Tara Eckel topped Kyla Coleman in the No. 6 slot, 6-2, 6-2, and Ana-Maria Constantinescu dropped van der Drift, 6-1, 6-2, at the top spot. After splitting the opening two sets, Maria Kalashnikova tied the match for the Sooners with a perfect final set, winning 6-4, 5-7, 6-0, over Garland.

With every match completed and the score tied 3-3, all eyes went to the No. 3 position where Templeton had already won a close 7-6 first set. After tying the second set at 6-6 with Marie-Pier Huet, Templeton overcame a 3-0 deficit in the seven-point tiebreaker to win the final game and send the Lady Raiders into the quarterfinal win.



"I was really proud of how the team played today," Tech head coach Todd Petty said. "You have to give Simone a lot of credit. She had lost to the girl earlier this week, but continued to battle and won a very important match for us. We will enjoy this one for the next couple of hours and then get ready to face Texas tomorrow."

The Lady Raiders have never advanced past the quarterfinals of the Big 12 Championships in school history. Tech fell, 4-3, to Texas earlier this season in Lubbock.

No. 7 Texas Tech 4 No. 10 Oklahoma 3 Headington Family Tennis Center Norman, Okla.


1. A. Constantinescu (OU-W) def. Sam van der Drift (TTU-W) 6-1, 6-2

2. Maria kalashnikova (OU-W) def. Kelsy Garland (TTU-W) 6-4, 5-7, 6-0

3. Simone Templeton (TTU-W) def. Marie-Pier Huet (OU-W) 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (7-5)

4. Kristina Radan (OU-W) def. Natalie Leitch (TTU-W) 6-2, 6-4

5. Stefanie Peana (TTU-W) def. Peta Maree Lancaster (OU-W) 6-2, 6-1

6. Tara Eckel (OU-W) def. Kyla Coleman (TTU-W) 6-2, 6-2


1. #71 Sam van der Drift/Kelsy Garland (TTU-W) def. Tara Eckel/Marie-Pier Huet (OU-W) 8-6

2. A. Constantinescu/Kristina Radan (OU-W) def. Kerryn Potgieter/Stefanie Peana (TTU-W) 8-5

3. Simone Templeton/Natalie Leitch (TTU-W) def. Peta Maree Lancaster/Maria kalashnikova (OU-W) 8-6

Match Notes University of Oklahoma 9-14 Texas Tech University 10-13; National ranking #72 Order of finish: Doubles (23,1); Singles (5,4,6,1,2,3)

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