Brendan Lavell, 23 Sports

Monday, March 21—

Junior Cassidy Spearman and sophomore Clare Raley won No. 61 Missouri’s final two singles matches as the Tigers came from behind to earn their first SEC victory Sunday. Mizzou trailed No. 43 Alabama, 3-2, after five matches.

Spearman and junior Brittany Lashway kicked off the day by defeating juniors Joanna Nena Savva and Danielle Spielmann, 6-2. Sophomore Brianna Lashway and junior Bea Machado Santos then clinched the doubles point with a 6-4 victory over the 32nd-ranked team of freshman Andie Daniell and junior Erin Routliffe.

No. 98 Santos and No. 85 Routliffe again squared off on the singles court, but the outcome changed as Routliffe defeated Santos, 6-7 (3-7), 6-2, 6-2. Senior Kelli Hine won the Tigers’ first singles point, defeating No. 31 Daniell, 6-2, 6-7 (4-7), 6-3.

The Lashway sisters then lost each of their matchups in three sets. Brianna lost to senior Natalia Maynetto, 6-3, 3-6, 6-4. Brittany lost to Savva, 6-3, 3-6, 6-0.

Down 3-2, Spearman and Raley each took the court knowing they both had to win to deliver Mizzou a victory.

Spearman finished first, defeating Spielmann, 6-1, 7-5, and setting up a winner-take-all matchup between Raley and sophomore Aryn Greene. Raley won the first set in a tiebreak before handily winning the second set 6-3. After the final point, Raley’s teammates sprinted onto the court and mobbed her.

Missouri improved to 13-5 and notched an SEC win after losing its first four matches of the conference slate. Alabama dropped to 4-10 and is winless in four conference matches.

The Tigers will continue SEC play when they travel to College Station, Texas to take on Texas A&M Friday, March 25, before taking on LSU in Baton Rouge, Louisiana two days later.

Photo courtesy of www.mutigers.com.