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Women's Tennis Trio Stopped in NCAA Quarterfinals

May 26, 2021
Abbey Forbes (Photo: Derrick Tuskan)

ORLANDO, Fla. – The UCLA women's tennis season came to a close Wednesday, as quarterfinalists in the NCAA Division I Championships singles and doubles tournaments dropped narrow decisions at USTA National Campus.

In a match that passed the three-hour mark in length, Abbey Forbes was felled by the defending singles champion and No. 1-ranked player, Estela Perez-Somarriba of Miami, in three sets. Then, in doubles play, Elysia Bolton and Jada Hart were edged by Anna Rogers and Alana Smith of NC State.

In a match of runs, Perez-Somarriba established a 4-0 advantage in the first set, only to have Forbes charge back with four straight of her own and ultimately force a tiebreaker. There, neither player was able to establish a lead of more than one point until Forbes delivered the deciding seventh. In the second set, it was Forbes who took a big lead before Perez-Somarriba answered. Forbes used three breaks of serve to take a 5-0 lead before Perez-Somarriba bounced back with four and seven games in a row. The third set saw Forbes break to open, but Perez-Somarriba took six of the final eight games to seal the 7-5(5), 5-7, 6-3 win.

Forbes completed her season with a 24-3 singles record. She went 18-3 versus nationally-ranked opponents. Playing exclusively on the top singles court, Forbes ran off 15 straight victories from Feb. 13-April 25 – a stretch that covered the entirety of Pac-12 play. For good measure, she went 13-2 in doubles contests. Forbes was named a singles All-American for the second time in as many seasons.

Bolton and Hart posted the initial break of their match at 4-3 of the first set. That set off a flurry of breaks and a tiebreaker was needed to decide it. Rogers and Smith took three of the first four games, but Bolton and Hart fought back to tie. The Wolfpack duo would seize four of the last five, though, and control. A back-and-forth second set saw Rogers and Smith break at 3-4 en route to the 7-6(4), 6-3 win.

Bolton and Hart went 6-3, 4-2 against nationally-ranked tandems. With their quarterfinal-round berth, both players achieved All-America status. Bolton has now accomplished the feat in each of her three seasons. Hart became just the ninth four-time honoree in program history. She finishes her career with a 94-41 singles record and a 123-40 doubles mark.