Julia Fellerhoff and Rebecca Shine had formidable opponents in the first round of the NCAA Doubles Championship but just walking on McWhorter Court in Athens, Georgia at the national championship was a historical moment for the Cardinals.
Louisville’s most successful doubles pair in school history drew the No. 3 ranked singles player in the country, Kristie Ahn, who partnered with the No. 21-ranked singles player, Carol Zhou from Stanford. Fellerhoff and Shine, who made the finals in the ITA Indoor National Championship, took the first set 6-4 before falling 6-3, 6-2 in the next two. Ahn and Zhao improved to 29-5 with the win and advanced in the bracket.
“This was a high level match. The points were being won and not given away. Stanford is a very good team obviously and they executed a little more than Julia and Becca. We definitely had opportunities to win it, so the only disappointment is in the loss! These two have elevated Louisville tennis to a national level. We will continue building on what they have started. These two should be recognized as the two best to ever play at Louisville. They have had amazing careers,” said UofL head coach Mark Beckham.
Not only did Shine and Fellerhoff reach the final match of the National Indoor Tournament but entered the season ranked No. 2 in the nation as a doubles team, the highest-ever ranking for a Cardinal duo. They each achieved milestones this season. Shine registered her 104th win in singles to take over the school record and she also notched her 102st victory in doubles placing her second on the all-time doubles list. Fellerhoff went undefeated at home in singles over the past two seasons with a perfect 16-0 record at the Bass-Rudd Tennis Center.