FAYETTEVILLE — The No. 22 Razorback women’s tennis team won their second straight match of the weekend over the Alabama Crimson Tide on Sunday, 6-1, at the Dills Indoor Tennis Center. With the win, the Hogs remain in second place in the SEC West and notched their fourth conference win with three matches remaining in the regular season.
“This was a very encouraging performance as we get closer to the postseason,” said head coach Michael Hegarty. “We’re trying to get the best effort we can out of our matches and today’s effort was as good as any.”
Arkansas (14-7, 4-4) started the day very similar to Friday, as they took control of doubles right from the start. It all began at court number two where the Hogs got a dominating performance from sophomore Kate Lukomskaya and freshman Kelsey Sundaram, winning the 8-0 shutout over Antonia Foehse and Alice Tunaru of the Crimson Tide, for their fourteenth victory as a pair. Alabama was able to even it back up at the number one spot after the No. 20 team of Courtney McLane and Alexa Guarachi defeated junior Anouk Tigu and sophomore Stephanie Roy, 8-2.
It came down to court number three to see who would take the doubles point into singles play. In a back and forth battle, the Arkansas team of freshmen Claudine Paulson and Valentina Starkova was able to score the win over Paulina Bigos and Meritt Emery, 8-5, for their fourth straight victory as a team. The win gave Arkansas a 1-0 advantage heading into singles play.
With doubles in the books it was on to singles where the star freshman, Sundaram, continued her roll and defeated Antonia Foehse in straight sets, 6-1, 6-0, to doubles the Razorbacks’ lead to 2-0. The win gives Sundaram now 15 wins this spring. The Hogs continued their winning ways at court number six after Starkova dropped Tunaru also in straight sets, 6-3, 6-4.
Now up 3-0 and only needing one more singles victory to wrap up the win, Arkansas got a clinching victory from sophomore Emily Carbone, who was the third straight Hog of the day to win in straight sets, as she topped Emery, 6-3, 6-2. At nearly the same time, the No. 65 ranked Tigu got her second ranked win of the weekend, this time over No. 47 Alexa Guarachi, 7-5, 6-3.
With the match already won, the Hogs and Tide continued singles play at courts two and five. At the No. 2 spot, Lukomskaya dropped her first match as a ranked player to McLane, 7-6 (3), 6-3, and Paulson at court five won the only three-set victory of the day over Bigos, 6-1, 4-6, 7-5.
Arkansas now only has three conference matches remaining on their schedule before heading to Athens, Ga. to compete in the SEC Championships. Next weekend, they will travel to Nashville, Tenn. to take on Vanderbilt on Friday, April 9th and then head to Lexington, Ky. to face the Kentucky Wildcats on Sunday, April 11th. Friday’s match is scheduled to start at 2:30 p.m. For complete coverage of Razorback women’s tennis, log on to ArkansasRazorbacks.comComplete ResultsNo. 22 Arkansas 6Alabama 1Doubles Order of Finish: 2, 1, 3*No. 1 #20 Courtney McLane/Alexa Guarachi (UA) def. Anouk Tigu/Stephanie Roy (ARK) 8-2No. 2 Kate Lukomskaya/Kelsey Sundaram (ARK) def. Antonia Foehse/Alice Tunaru (UA) 8-0No. 3 Claudine Paulson/Valentina Starkova (ARK) def. Paulina Bigos/Meritt Emery (UA) 8-5Singles Order of Finish: 4, 6, 3*, 1, 2, 5No. 1 #65 Anouk Tigu (ARK) def. #47 Alexa Guarachi (UA) 7-5, 6-3No. 2 Courtney McLane (UA) def. #115 Kate Lukomskaya (ARK) 7-6 (3), 6-3No. 3 Emily Carbone (ARK) def. Meritt Emery (UA) 6-3, 6-2No. 4 Kelsey Sundaram (ARK) def. Antonia Foehse (UA) 6-1, 6-0No. 5 Claudine Paulson (ARK) def. Paulina Bigos (UA) 6-1, 4-6, 7-5No. 6 Valentina Starkova (ARK) def. Alice Tunaru (UA) 6-3, 6-4