#24 Bobcat Women’s Tennis Finishes Regular Season with Win over USC Aiken, 5-4

Seniors Emma Niemi, Kristen Jones and Jena Kelly
Seniors Emma Niemi, Kristen Jones and Jena Kelly

MILLEDGEVILLE, Ga. – The No. 24 Georgia College Women's Tennis team (13-6, 7-2 PBC) needed to take four singles matches and got just that Saturday in a 5-4 win over USC Aiken (11-9, 3-6 PBC) at the Centennial Center Tennis Facility.

The Bobcats dropped two of the three doubles bouts to start in an early hole. The win came in the second slot, where Kristen Jones (Marietta) and Emilia Richter (Berlin, Germany) improved to 8-5 on the season by topping Kayla Calvert and Victoria Giannaccini 8-2.

In the first slot, Jena Kelly (Lawrenceville) and Valeria Lopez (Galicia, Spain) lost to Olivera Veskovac and Teresa Franco Dias 8-4. Third doubles was another Bobcat defeat as Emma Niemi (Cumming) and Paula Garriga (Barcelona, Spain) jumped out early but eventually lost to Elena Bompieri and Alice Neves 8-4.

The first singles result evened out the match, as Jones continued her hot play as of late, beating Karina Blas in fourth singles 6-3, 6-4. Jones is now 12-4 this season with a 6-1 mark in the last 10 matches. Georgia College then got a 3-2 lead when Richter got back to her winning ways against Calvert 6-0, 3-6, 6-0 in third singles. Richter started the season 14-0 before dropping a match earlier this week. In the top line, No. 59 Kelly fell short to Veskovac 7-5, 6-3 to even the match at 3-3.

Lopez provided a victory in the second slot, beating Bompieri 7-5, 6-2. Garriga then secured the point to clinch the team win, setting down Giannaccini in a pair of 6-3 sets in the fifth slot. Garriga has had a strong first season in blue and green, going 15-2 in singles action. The team result already in hand, Niemi lost a sixth-slot bout to Neves 6-1, 6-1 to close the day.

Prior to the match, the Bobcats honored their women's tennis seniors as Kelly, Jones and Niemi all played final home matches.

The Bobcats finish the regular season with a Peach Belt Conference (PBC) record of 7-2, positioned tied for second with the University of North Georgia. There is one match left on the PBC schedule tomorrow between Young Harris College and Flagler College that could have an impact on how the seeding breaks down for the upcoming PBC Tournament April 20-21.

The Georgia College Department of Athletics, two-time winners of the PBC Commissioner's Cup and the 2017 PBC Sportsmanship Institution of the Year, sponsors 11 varsity athletic programs at the NCAA Division II level. As a Division II program, Bobcat Athletics prides itself on balancing the life of the student-athlete, evidenced by the teams' multiple appearances in post-season competition as well as documented academic success and community-service involvement. Sign up at @GCBobcats on Twitter and Facebook for up-to-the-minute reports, and visit GCBobcats.PhotoReflect.com to purchase photo prints from home athletic contests.