Yale University's Cullman-Heyman Tennis Center in New Haven was the site of the ultimate battle at the 2017 ITA Division I National Women's Team Indoor Championship, and it were Florida Gators who clinched the first big national title of the year, beating North Carolina Tar Heels 4-2. This was the 30th edition of this event and 7th title for the Gators, the first since 1999, in their 17th appearance. Freshman Ingrid Neel, who came to Florida just a month ago (read more about that HERE), delivering both the doubles point and also the 4th in singles that gave the Gators the crown. Florida could not have asked for a better start, as Belinda Woolcock/Josie Kuhlman toppled Rachael James-Baker/Chloe Ouellet-Pizer 6-0 on court 3, before Anna Danilina/Ingrid Neel scored another easy win, beating Jessie Aney/Cassandra Vazquez 6-2 on court 2, moving Florida into an early lead.
Brooke Austin couldn't finish her doubles match, but she made sure to contribute in singles, dominating against Chloe Ouellet-Pizer on court 5 by 6-1 6-1 to send Florida 2-0 up. Sara Daavettila added the North Carolina to the scoreboard, earning a nice and easy 6-1 6-2 win over Anna Danilina on court 2 to cut the deficit to 2-1. Nevertheless, Florida kept its lead firmly, as Kourtney Keegan came from behind to produce a marvelous tennis in sets 2 and 3 against Cassandra Vazquez, ousting her 4-6 6-1 6-1 to increase the advantage to 3-1, pushing the Gators closer and closer to the finish line. Alexa Graham kept the Tar Heels alive, prevailing against Josie Kuhlman 6-3 7-6 on court 4 but her efforts were in vain after Ingrid Neel delivered the desired 4th point for Florida on near court 3, with a 6-4 1-6 6-3 triumph over Jessie Aney. On the main court, the match between Belinda Woolcock and Hayley Carter stayed unfinished, with Carter leading 4-0 in the second set.
Florida Gators vs North Carolina Tar Heels 4-2
Doubles (Order of match finish - 3, 2)
1. Brooke Austin/Kourtney Keegan (UF) vs Hayley Carter/Sara Daavettila (UNC) 4-4 Unfinished
2. Anna Danilina/Ingrid Neel (UF) vs Jessie Aney/Cassandra Vazquez (UNC) 6-2
3. Belinda Woolcock/Josie Kuhlman (UF) vs Rachael James-Baker/Chloe Ouellet-Pizer (UNC) 6-0
Singles (Order of match finish - 5, 2, 6, 4, 3)
1. Belinda Woolcock (UF) vs Hayley Carter (UNC) 6-7(1) 6-1 0-4 Unfinished
2. Sara Daavettila (UNC) vs Anna Danilina (UF) 6-1 6-2
3. Ingrid Neel (UF) vs Jessie Aney (UNC) 6-4 1-6 6-3
4. Alexa Graham (UNC) vs Josie Kuhlman (UF) 6-3 7-6(1)
5. Brooke Austin (UF) vs Chloe Ouellet-Pizer (UNC) 6-1 6-1
6. Kourtney Keegan (UF) vs Cassandra Vazquez (UNC) 4-6 6-1 6-1
ALSO READ: 2017 ITA Div. I Nat. Women's Team Indoor Cahmp.: North Carolina edges Ohio State for the place in the final