NORMAN, OKLA. – The No. 24 Razorback women’s tennis team begins play in the 2010 NCAA Women’s Tennis Tournament on Friday as they take on the No. 42 Oklahoma Sooners in Norman, Okla. The winner of the first round matchup between the Sooners and Razorbacks will play the winner of Wichita State and one seed, Texas.
This match marks the second time this season the Hogs have had to face the Sooners. In the first match, the Razorbacks earned a solid 6-1 victory by the help of tough doubles play from junior Anouk Tigu and freshman Claudine Paulson, who defeated the No. 29 doubles team at the time, Ana-Maria Constantinescu and Teona Tsertsvadze, 9-7. Also, in that match, Arkansas won five of six singles matches.
"We are excited and prepared for a great opening round match against Oklahoma," said head coach Michael Hegarty. "They have had a fantastic season and our first match was a lot closer than the 6-1 score indicated."
In the all-time series against Oklahoma, the Hogs have racked up a 13-11 record as well as holding a 13-9 record overall in the NCAA Tournament. The Sooners are led in both singles and doubles by nationally-ranked individuals. Constantinescu and Tsertsvadze are ranked No. 41 in doubles while Constantinescu is ranked No. 106 in singles.
Oklahoma has also won a combined 90 or 139 singles matches (.647) and have won 73 of those 90 in straight-sets (.811). All six members of OU’s singles lineup boast records of .600 or better.
On the other side, Arkansas is led in doubles by freshman Kelsey Sundaram and sophomore Kate Lukomskaya, who have a 16-9 record so far this season and are 6-4 in conference play.
In singles play, the team is led by first team All-SEC selection, Anouk Tigu, who has a 14-8 record at the number one spot for the Hogs.
"We have had perhaps our best week of practice all year since exams ended last wednesday so everyone is ready for the challenge in Norman."
First serve for the first round matchup is set to be at 2 p.m. on Friday at the Headington Family Tennis Center on the Oklahoma campus.
For complete coverage of the women’s tennis team throughout the 2010 NCAA Women’s Tennis Tournament, be sure to log on to ArkansasRazorbacks.com.