FAYETTEVILLE – The No. 22 Razorback women’s tennis team almost made it a clean sweep on the weekend as they defeated No. 36 Texas A&M, 6-1 at the Billingsley Tennis Center, to move them to 2-0 on the season and winners of 13 of their last 14 singles and doubles matches combined.
For the fourth straight year, the Hogs started their dual match season with a 2-0 record and the win today was a much needed confidence booster going into the ITA Kickoff next weekend. This match was also a revenge exacter as the Hogs made up for a close 4-3 loss to the Aggies last year in College Station, Texas.
“This weekend was certainly the kind of way we hoped to start the spring with,” said Arkansas head coach Michael Hegarty. “I feel like we have still a lot of great tennis in front of us as we go forward into the ITA Kickoff next weekend in South Bend.”
After losing all three doubles matches a year ago to Texas A&M, the Razorbacks were determined to not have repeat performance this season. The Aggies would strike first in doubles taking down the 35th-ranked team of sophomore Kelsey Sundram and junior Kate Lukomskaya, 8-3. However, the Hogs would rally on courts two and three with the Hogs winning both matches by a score of 8-6. Both Razorback doubles teams would notch their second doubles win of the dual match season.
With the important doubles point in hand, the Hogs would go to work on singles play. Many of the matches were slow going at first, but sophomore Claudine Paulson would be the first to go final on court three as she dropped A&M’s Christi Potgieter in straight sets, 6-4, 6-1. That win would extend the current hot streak for Paulson as she has now won five straight singles matches and nine total this season.
It wasn’t long after that match finals started dropping like flies in favor of Arkansas. Junior Emily Carbone would be the next victor as she would win her match in straight sets over Christi Liles, 6-3, 6-4, while the match clincher would come from junior Stephanie Roy, who seemed like an unlikely source early on to even get the victory on court five. After losing the first set, 1-6, Roy would bounce back in the biggest of ways to win sets two and three over Stephanie Davidson, 6-4, 6-1. That victory would be the fourth team point to go to the Razorbacks, giving them the win.
Closing out the day, the Hogs would go on to win two of the remaining three singles matches with one big win coming individually for senior Anouk Tigu, Tigu, who is ranked No. 22 in the country by ITA, defeated No. 17 Nazari Urbina in a tough three set match, 6-3, 4-6, 1-0(4). The win for Tigu is her first over a ranked opponent in 2011 and her 12th win this season.
The Razorback women’s tennis team will hit the road for their next matchup in South Bend, Ind. for the ITA Kickoff Weekend. The Hogs will play Utah on Saturday, Jan. 29 and if won will play the winner of Notre Dame and Yale the next day. The next home match for Arkansas will take place on Friday, Feb. 11 against Tulsa at the Billingsley Tennis Center. For all information regarding the women’s tennis team, log on to ArkansasRazorbacks.com.
Complete Results vs. No. 36 Texas A&MNo. 22 Arkansas 6No. 36 Texas A&M 1Complete Doubles ResultsOrder of Finish: 1, 3, 2*No. 1 Janelle Cuthbertson/Christi Liles (TAMU) def. #35 Kate Lukomskaya/Kelsey Sundaram (ARK) 8-3No. 2 Anouk Tigu/Claudine Paulson (ARK) def. Stephanie Davidson/Morgan Frank (TAMU) 8-6No. 3 Valentina Starkova/Jade Frampton (ARK) def. Christi Potgieter/Nazari Urbina (ARK) 8-6Complete Singles ResultsOrder of Finish: 3, 4, 5*, 6, 2, 1No. 1 #22 Anouk Tigu (ARK) def. #17 Nazari Urbina (TAMU) 6-3, 4-6, 1-0(4)No. 2 Morgan Frank (TAMU) def. Kate Lukomskaya (ARK) 6-2, 7-6(6), 1-0(4)No. 3 Claudine Paulson (ARK) def. Christi Potgieter (TAMU) 6-4, 6-1No. 4 Emily Carbone (ARK) def. Christi Liles (TAMU) 6-3, 6-4No. 5 Stephanie Roy (ARK) def. Stephanie Davidson (TAMU) 1-6, 6-4, 6-1No. 6 Kelsey Sundaram (ARK) def. Janelle Cuthbertson (TAMU) 7-5, 6-4