KU Tennis Travels South for Big 12 Weekend Battles
March 29, 2012
LAWRENCE, Kan.–Looking for its first win in the Big 12 Conference this season, the University of Kansas women’s tennis team travels to Texas this weekend to take on two nationally ranked conference opponents. KU will face the No. 10 Texas Longhorns Friday at 2 p.m. in Austin, Texas, and the No. 16 Texas A&M Aggies Sunday at 1 p.m. in College Station, Texas.
The Jayhawks are 9-7 overall and 0-4 in the Big 12 this season. The Longhorns are 9-5 overall and 2-0 in the conference, while the Aggies are 11-1 overall and 1-1 in conference matches.
Last Time Out
Junior Monica Pezzotti claimed the Kansas women’s tennis team’s lone singles victory as the Jayhawks fell 6-1 to No. 18 Texas Tech Sunday at the Jayhawk Tennis Center.
After dropping decisions at the No. 1 and No. 3 doubles positions, sophomore Paulina Los and freshman Maria Belen Ludueña battled to an 8-5 win over Tech’s Nikki Sanders and Caroline Starck.
The Lady Raiders then won four-straight singles matches before Pezzotti notched KU’s only point at the No. 1 singles spot, defeating Elizabeth Ullathorne, 6-3, 6-3.
Scouting the Opponents
Texas returns four regular singles starters from the 2010-11 squad that reached the finals of the Big 12 Championship and the round of 32 at the NCAA Championships.
UT currently has five athletes in the ITA singles rankings. The Longhorns are led by junior Aeriel Ellis, who last season became UT’s first ITA All-American since 1999. The Californian has qualified to compete in all eight of the previous national championship events contested during her two-plus seasons as a Longhorn. She reached the round of 16 of the singles draw at the 2011 NCAA Championships.
The Aggies are riding a school-record 11-match winning streak under the direction of first-year head coach Howard Joffe. Seventh-ranked Cristina Sanchez Quintanar is the highest ranked singles player in the Big 12 and is one of three A&M players to be listed in the national singles rankings. The junior from Spain is 12-0 in dual matches, including 8-0 at the No. 1 line and 4-0 at No. 2. She is 25-4 overall, including 9-3 against ranked opponents.
Junior Wen Sun is No. 73 and has won her last seven matches to improve to 10-2 at No. 3 singles. Nazari Urbina, the winner in her last eight matches and ranked No. 101, also is 8-2, having seen action at the top two lines.
After a week off, KU will continue its five-match road swing next weekend when the Jayhawks face Missouri on Friday, April 13, at 5 p.m. in Columbia, Mo., and Iowa State on Sunday, April 15, in Ames, Iowa, with times to be determined.