Florida tops UNC to win ITA National Indoor Championships

February 14, 2017 09:17 AM

By Pat Mitsch

It seems only fitting that an indoor title match between southern schools was ultimately decided by two players from Rochester, Minn.

University of Florida freshman Ingrid Neel (pictured above) defeated University of North Carolina sophomore Jessie Aney – both of whom grew up in Rochester and often played doubles together as juniors – 6-4, 1-6, 6-3, to clinch a 4-2 victory for the Gators at the ITA Division I National Team Indoor Championships in New Haven, Conn.

Brooke Austin (Indianapolis) and Kourtney Keegan (Roswell, Ga.) also notched singles victories for the Gators, who won their seventh ITA Indoors title – the second most in history, behind Stanford’s 10 – and first since 1999.

Top-seeded Florida dropped only four points all weekend in the 16-team bracket, notching victories over Michigan (first round: 4-1), Texas Tech (quarterfinals: 4-1) and Georgia (semifinals: 4-0).

The second-seeded Tar Heels, meanwhile, overcame a stiff test from Ohio State in the semifinals before prevailing, 4-3, when Hayley Carter (Hilton Head Island, S.C.) beat the ITA’s top-ranked singles player, Francesca Di Lorenzo (New Albany, Ohio), 6-4, 4-6, 6-4.