FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Following a dominating 6-1 win over Missouri on Sunday (March 1), the Arkansas women’s tennis team (11-4, 1-0 SEC) will hit the road this weekend for a pair of Southeastern Conference matches. The Razorbacks will battle Ole Miss on Friday afternoon (March 6) before traveling to Starkville, Miss. to face Mississippi State on Sunday (March 8).
|No. 44 Arkansas (11-4, 1-0 SEC) at No. 17 Ole Miss (8-3, 0-2 SEC)|
DATE | TIME
|March 6, 2015 | 3 p.m. CT|
|Gillom Sports Center | Oxford, Miss.|
|No. 44 Arkansas (11-4, 1-0 SEC) at No. 59 Mississippi State (9-3, 0-2 SEC)|
DATE | TIME
|March 8, 2015 | 1 p.m. CT|
|McCarthy Gymnasium | Starkville, Miss.|
LAST TIME OUT (VS. MIZZOU | MARCH 1)
The Razorbacks snapped a two-match losing streak with a 6-1 victory over Missouri at the Billingsley Tennis Center on Sunday, March 1.
To start the match, Arkansas lost the doubles point after dropping matches on courts one and three.
The Razorbacks bounced back in a big way, winning the first set in all six singles matches. Junior Makenzie Craft upped her dual record to 6-3 following a 6-3, 6-0 win on court three over Bea Machado Santos.
Arkansas took a 2-1 lead in the match after Sophomore Shannon Hudson picked up a 6-2, 6-3 win over Cassidy Spearman on court two. On court one, Junior Yuliya Lysa improved to 12-1 in dual action when she tallied a 6-3, 6-2 win over Kelli Hine to give Arkansas a 3-1 lead in the match.
Sasha Shkorupeieva clinched things for the Razorbacks on court No. 4. The sophomore, who saved set point at 4-5 (30-40) in the second, defeated Brianna Lashway 6-1, 7-5 to secure the match.
Freshman Mia Jurasic (7-5, 2-6, 10-4) and junior Flavia Araujo (6-4, 2-6, 10-4) closed out the convincing win for the home team, picking up hard-fought victories on courts five and six to secure the 6-1 team win.
- The Razorbacks have won 11 of their last 14 matches heading into Sunday’s action.
- Yuliya Lysa has won six consecutive matches and leads the team in singles wins (12).
- Arkansas is 0-2 on the road this season.
- The Razorbacks are one of four SEC programs with double digit wins this season and are the lone SEC school to have double digit home victories this year.
IN THE POLLS
In the March. 3 ITA poll, the Razorbacks checked in at No. 44. Arkansas has been ranked in 121 consecutive weekly ITA polls dating back to 2008.
KNOW YOUR OPPONENT | OLE MISS (8-3, 0-2 SEC):
- Dropped two straight matches to open SEC play.
- Ranked No. 17 in this week’s ITA rankings.
- In the singles rankings, senior Julia Jones is ranked No. 14 and freshman Arianne Hartono is ranked No. 43 and junior Mai El Kamash is ranked No. 109.
KNOW YOUR OPPONENT | MISSISSIPPI STATE (9-3, 0-2 SEC):
- Dropped two straight matches to open SEC play.
- Ranked No. 59 in this week’s ITA rankings.
ARAUJO NAMED RED TIE HONOREE
Junior Flavia Araujo was named the 2015 Red Tie Honoree for the Female Spirit of the Razorback Award, as announced by the University of Arkansas Athletic Department and the Razorback Foundation on Dec. 31. Each year, the Razorbacks recognize student-athletes whose performance throughout his or her career serves to lift up their sport to new heights and whose character exemplifies the goals of the athletic department. The 18th annual Red Tie Dinner was held Feb. 21, 2015, in Rogers, Ark. A steady contributor on the court, Araujo was also named the 2013-14 Lee Spencer Individual champion for her community service endeavors and overall commitment to the university.
Arkansas women’s tennis all-time winningest coach with a record of 158-133 (.543), Michael Hegarty (Auburn, ’94) is in his 12th season as head coach of the Razorbacks. He has led the Hogs to seven NCAA Tournament appearances in his first 11 years.
Fresh faces are abound in the George M. Billingsley Tennis Center this season. A total of eight newcomers come aboard for the Razorbacks this season. Here’s a breakdown of the newcomers. Junior Makenzie Craft (Frisco, Texas) transferred in after spending her freshman season with Georgia and her sophomore season with Baylor. Craft certainly brings with her a championship pedigree as she was a part of Georgia’s 2013 SEC Championship team and Baylor’s 2014 Big 12 Championship team. She compiled a 27-22 overall singles record during her first two collegiate years. Junior Nicole Breaux (Lafayette, La.) comes to Fayetteville after transferring from Louisiana-Lafayette. Breaux competed at the top of the singles and doubles lineup for the Ragin’ Cajuns, amassing a 28-34 singles record over two seasons. Junior Yuliya Lysa is in her first season and comes to Arkansas by way of Khmelnytsky, Ukraine. Sophomore Nastassia Rubel (Minsk, Belarus) is in her first season with the Razorbacks, bringing with her a world ranking of No. 188 on the ITF junior tour. Sophomore Elly Fryberger (Littleton, Colo.) is in her first season after transferring from Kansas. Freshmen Mia Jurasic (Ogulin, Croatia) and Peyton Jennings (Tulsa, Okla.) will both be competing in their first collegiate matches. Jurasic is the Croatian 16 and under national champion while Jennings claimed back-to-back Oklahoma state titles at No. 1 singles her junior and senior year.
The eighth newcomer is assistant coach Luc Godin. Godin joins Hegarty’s staff and the Razorbacks after previously serving as the men’s and women’s assistant at Louisiana-Lafayette in 2013-14. He is familiar with the SEC, however, as he was an assistant for the Auburn women’s team from 2011-13.
The Razorbacks finished the 2013-14 season with a 13-16 overall mark, including 2-11 in SEC play. Arkansas finished the season ranked No. 59 in the final ITA poll.
Arkansas brings back three players from last year’s squad. Returning are junior Flavia Araujo and sophomores Shannon Hudson and Oleksandra Shkorupeieva.
AT A GLANCE: 2014 FALL
The Razorbacks competed in six team tournaments throughout the fall schedule. Sophomore Oleksandra Shkorupeieva led the team in wins, posting a 12-2 record. Additionally, she won her flight championship at the Oklahoma Sooner Invitational and also won three straight matches at the ITA Central Regional Championships, advancing out of the qualifying bracket and into the main draw’s Round of 32. Sophomore Shannon Hudson was selected to compete in the singles qualifying draw at the Riviera/ITA Women’s All-American Championships and finished the fall with an 8-6 singles record. Junior Makenzie Craft posted an 8-7 fall singles record and advanced all the way to the Round of 16 at the ITA Central Regional.
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