ZHELTOVA FALLS IN TOUGH THREE SET MATCH AT NCAA SINGLES CHAMPIONSHIPS
COLLEGE STATION, Texas - Sacramento State junior Katrina Zheltova dropped a tough 6-2, 6-7 (4-7), 6-4 decision to Gira Schofield of South Carolina in opening round action of the 2009 NCAA Women's Tennis Singles Championships on the campus of Texas A&M.
Zheltova, a native of Minsk, Belarus, won the first game of set one, but eventually fell to the No. 43 ranked Schofield 6-2. In set two, Zheltova again started hot, winning the first two games, before Schofield fought back to tie the set at 2-2. With Schofield up 6-5 late in the set, the Gamecock took a 40-30 lead before Zheltova came back to win the game and force a second set tiebreak.
In the tiebreak, Zheltova, the No. 84 ranked player in the nation, never trailed, taking a 7-4 victory to force a third and deciding set.
In the third set, Zheltova and Schofield were locked in a 4-4 tie, and played a long game that saw both players hold an advantage in deuce. Schofield got the better of the battle, winning the game to take a 5-4 lead and eventually take the match with a 6-4 set three victory.
For Zheltova, a three-time Big Sky Player of the Year who earned All-American status in 2008 by reaching the round of 16 in the tournament, it marked the first time she had been eliminated in the first round of the tournament.