HOUSTON, Texas — The No. 18 Razorback women’s tennis team came up short on Saturday against the No. 60 Rice Owls, losing 4-3 at the Jake Hess Tennis Stadium in Houston. The Hogs fell behind early after dropping the doubles point and just couldn’t seem to get over the hump in singles, winning three of the six matches.
“We got an uncharacteristic slow start and dug a big hole for ourselves,” said head coach Michael Hegarty. “I was pleased with how we battled back hard and almost got the job done.”
Arkansas (6-2), coming off an emotional win last week against Tulsa, was looking to get its fourth win in a row and the third against a ranked opponent. Things began great for the Razorbacks as they were able to get the win at the No. 2 doubles position from sophomore Kate Lukomskaya and freshman Kelsey Sundaram, who defeated the team of Alex Rasch and Jessica Jackson, 8-5. However, the Hogs dropped the final two doubles matches to fall behind 1-0 early in the match.
With the beginning of singles play, it didn’t take the Owls long to extend their lead to 2-0 after getting a win at the No. 2 spot from No. 100 ranked Jessica Jackson, who defeated Lukomskaya, 6-2, 6-0. The Hogs were able to answer back at the No. 1 spot from No. 62 ranked junior Anouk Tigu, who got the win in straight sets, 6-2, 6-3, against No. 63 ranked Rebekka Hanle. With the team score now 2-1, both teams traded points at the four and six positions. Rice clinched the match at the No. 2 spot from Julie Chao, who defeated sophomore Emily Carbone in a well-played match, 7-5, 6-7 (5), 6-3. The Hogs did end the match on a high note, getting a win from sophomore Stephanie Roy, who rallied back after dropping the first set, against Rebecca Lin, 5-7, 7-6 (7), 6-4.
“Give full credit to Rice today,” said Hegarty. “They played big when it counted.”
Arkansas will have a quick turnaround for their next match as they head to Fort Worth, Texas to take on No. 27 TCU on Sunday at noon. In their last meeting, Arkansas defeated TCU, 4-3, in Fayetteville during the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Complete results of tomorrow’s match will be posted on ArkansasRazorbacks.com.Arkansas vs. RiceComplete ResultsNo. 67 Rice 4No. 18 Arkansas 3Double ResultsOrder of Finish: 2, 1, 3*No. 1 #31 Julie Chao/Ana Guzman (RICE) def. Anouk Tigu/Claudine Paulson (ARK) 8-4No. 2 Kate Lukomskaya/Kelsey Sundaram (ARK) def. Alex Rasch/Jessica Jackson (RICE) 8-5No. 3 Rebekka Hanle/Rebecca Lin (RICE) def. Stephanie Roy/ Valentina Starkova (ARK) 8-6Singles ResultsOrder of Finish: 3, 1, 4, 6, 2*, 5No. 1 #62 Anouk Tigu (ARK) def. #63 Rebekka Hanle (RICE) 6-2, 6-3No. 2 Julie Chao (RICE) def. Emily Carbone (ARK) 7-5, 6-7 (5), 6-3No. 3 #100 Jessica Jackson (RICE) def. Kate Lukomskaya (ARK) 6-2, 6-0No. 4 Ana Guzman (RICE) def. Kelsey Sundaram (ARK) 6-4, 6-3No. 5 Stephanie Roy (ARK) def. Rebecca Lin (RICE) 5-7, 7-6 (7), 6-4No. 6 Claudine Paulson (ARK) def. Daniella Trigo (RICE) 6-3, 5-7, 6-1