No. 2 UF impressive in shutout

Published: Monday, January 27, 2003 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, January 26, 2003 at 11:10 p.m.

Florida women's tennis coach Roland Thornqvist was a bit anxious about Sunday's match against South Alabama.

Initially, there seemed to be no reason to worry. The Gators are No. 2 and their entire singles lineup is ranked in the top 100. The Jaguars are 27th and none of their singles players or doubles teams are ranked.

But South Alabama losing 4-3 to Georgia in the NCAA Championships last season was enough to get Thornqvist's attention. And while the Jaguars threatened in a couple of singles matches, Florida still won 7-0 in front of 160 at the Ring Tennis Complex.

"This South Alabama team's going to beat a lot of teams," Thornqvist said. "This is a heck of a second match of the year."

While the Gators (2-0), who had their first back-to-back shutout wins to start a season since 1991, won the singles matches in straight sets, half of them had to fight back from early first-set deficits.

South Alabama (1-1) was up at least one break at Nos. 1, 3 and 5 in the first set. Marlieke Jager led Julia Scaringe 4-0 in the first before the UF senior reeled off nine games in a row for a 6-5, 6-2 win at No. 3.

The Gators had more trouble winning the doubles point.

Florida's seventh-ranked duo of Alexis Gordon and Scaringe were beaten easily 8-2 by Viktoria Stoklasova and Katarina Palenikova at No. 1. Lindsay Dawaf and Julie Rotondi made up for the loss with their 8-1 win at No. 2, leaving the No. 3 spot as the deciding match.

Jennifer Magley and Zerene Reyes came back from a 7-5 deficit to top Jager and Klara Jarova 9-7 in a match lasting about an hour and 20 minutes.

"I certainly want to give credit to our No. 3 doubles team, our young No. 3 team, because they were down and out and they were just able to keep their cool and put the ball where it needed to be," Thornqvist said. "They played to the right person in the crunch and that made a difference. Winning that match certainly helped us out."

Magley continued that momentum in her 6-0, 6-1 singles win against Jarova at No. 6 as the first completed match.

Doris Yon can be reached at (352) 374-5052 or

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