Mia Winterbottom toughed out a 7-5, 4-6, 6-3 victory at No. 2 singles to give UNC Pembroke the deciding point over Georgia Southwestern in a grueling 5-4 match that lasted more than four hours at the UNCP Varsity Tennis Courts on Sunday afternoon.
The win improved UNCP to 5-8 overall and 1-4 in the Peach Belt Conference. GSW dropped its fourth-straight match to fall to 4-10 and 0-8 in PBC play. Southwestern led the match by a 4-1 count, but UNCP won each of the last four singles matches to steal the victory.
Doubles play was indicative as to the type of day it would be as the two teams split a pair of 8-5 outcomes on courts two and three, while Leady Cuellar and Lauren Grogan gave the Hurricanes the 2-1 lead heading into singles play with an 8-2 win at No. 1 doubles over Jenna McGary and Janna Oxendine.
Cuellar topped McGary 6-3, 6-0 at No. 1 singles, while Grogan bested Meredith Pierson 6-1, 6-0 at No. 3 singles to give the visitors a seemingly insurmountable 4-1 lead, but that would be all the team points GSW would muster on the day. Janna Oxendine defeated Melinda Vansant 6-2, 6-0 at No. 5 singles and Christian Minnick ousted Katie Adamson 6-3,6-1 on court No. 6 to bring UNCP to within one and set the table for a pair of deciding marathon bouts.
Maricel Quintero-Prieto rebounded from a tough loss in the second set to win her No. 4 singles match with Monica Osam, 6-2, 5-7, 6-2. Winterbottom and her No. 2 singles opponent, Mollie McGowan, stayed on the court for more than three hours before the UNCP freshman exited with the win.
Southwestern is back in action on Friday hosting West Alabama at the Susan K. Smith Tennis Complex.
Special thanks to UNC Pembroke Sports Information