Women's tennis: Lely grad Embree of Florida advances, FGCU wins consolation match at ITA Regional

Florida's top-seeded and fifth-ranked Lauren Embree, a Lely High School graduate, dropped only three games in two singles victories on Saturday en route to a berth in Sunday's quarterfinal round of the USTA/ITA Regional Championships, hosted by the University of Florida at Ring Tennis Complex in Gainesville.

Embree shut out both opponents in the opening set of her singles matches, defeating Georgia's Alina Jerjomina, 6-0, 6-2 in second round action and breezing through her third round singles match against USF's Ecaterina Vasenina, 6-0, 6-1.

"Lauren played some of the best tennis that she has in a while," Florida head coach Roland Thornqvist said. "She's worked really, really hard. I think she felt that in the past few weeks, she hasn't seen the fruit of the hard work, but I think it's starting to shine through a little bit here. I thought that she played excellent tennis here today."

In all, four Gators singles players advanced to Sunday's quarterfinal round and the doubles team of junior Caroline Hitimana and sophomore Olivia Janowicz moved on to Sunday's semifinal round.

Florida Gulf Coast University's Jen Evans, an Evangelical Christian grad, won a singles match in the consolation bracket, beating Florida A&M's Bethany Holt, 6-2, 6-2. She lost her next match to Karyn Guttormsen of FIU, 6-3, 4-6, 6-1. Sophomore Gyanna Mandic was eliminated in straight sets, as was junior Morgan Bechtel.

Action continues on Sunday at 9 a.m., beginning with semifinal round doubles matches. The quarterfinal round main draw singles matches will begin at approximately 10:30 a.m. on the Linder Stadium courts. Consolation singles matches will also commence at 10:30 a.m. on the back courts of Ring Tennis Complex, followed by the semifinals of both the main draw and consolation singles matches, the times of which will be determined on Sunday.

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