Arkansas Returns to SEC Play with Vanderbilt a
BY ANDRES FOCIL
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – No. 23 Arkansas will return to Southeastern Conference competition for the first time since March 7, when the Razorbacks go on the road for matches against No. 13 Vanderbilt on March 19 at 2 p.m. CT and No. 18 Kentucky on March 21 at 12 p.m. CT. UA picked up its 10th win for the season when it defeated Hawaii on March 12 and is ready to carry over that valuable outdoor experience to the league level.
“We’ve had a week off, so now we’re primed and ready to play,” Arkansas head coach Robert Cox said. “We had a great match against Hawaii and we got some great workouts in while we were there. We’re not having any problems with the transition from indoors to outdoors.”
The Hogs are 1-1 in league play and will try to pick up two victories to add to their 10-2 regular season record. Arkansas hopes to continue its recent success under the leadership of the highest ranked player in the SEC, No. 8 sophomore Adrians Zguns and No. 54 senior Nathan Price. Zguns carries a 26-5 record, while Price is at 24-7 for the year.
The Commodores stand atop the eastern division with a 2-1 conference record and are 8-5 overall. The Razorbacks will face a challenge with Vanderbilt as it is the 2003 NCAA runner-up and is ready to rebound from a loss last week to second-ranked Ole Miss. Vandy also has four individual players ranked in the top 50, including No. 16 Chad Harris, No. 34 Scott Brown, No. 41 Matt Lockin and No. 47 Zach Dailey. Its doubles team of Dailey and Greg Sossaman can be found in the 23rd spot.
“We always seem to play well against Vanderbilt,” Cox said. “We’re looking forward to playing them. It’s early in SEC play for them and for us. With Kentucky it’s the same thing. It’s always tough going on the road in the SEC, but I like our attitude and I expect us to play well. We’re healthy and prepared, we just have to execute.”
Kentucky is also at 1-1 in the SEC with an overall record of 8-4. The Wildcats boast two ranked players with No. 15 Jesse Witten and No. 74 Tigran Martirosyan.
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