Sunflower Showdown Closes out the Kansas Tennis Regular Season

April 22, 2011


Starting Off
Kansas tennis will play its final regular season match Saturday when in-state rival No. 45 Kansas State comes to town for the Sunflower Showdown. KU’s two seniors will also be honored at the 12 p.m., match at the Jayhawk Tennis Center: Maria Martinez of Havre de Grace, Md., and Kate Goff of Scottsdale, Ariz., will be recognized for their Jayhawks careers and their contributions to the team and program over the last four seasons.

Last Times Out

The Jayhawks were handed two tough 4-3 losses by Oklahoma State and No. 21 Oklahoma last weekend, seeing their two-match winning streak snapped. KU played a more than five-hour long match Friday afternoon in Oklahoma City with the match tied at 3-3 and coming down to the No. 4 singles contest. But Erin Wilbert dropped a tough three-set thriller against OU’s Malika Rose, 6-1, 4-6, 6-4, and the Jayhawks dropped the heartbreaker. Continuing its Oklahoma swing Sunday in Norman, KU again fell 4-3 to the No. 21-ranked Sooners and are now 9-11 overall and 3-7 in the Big 12 coming into Saturday’s match against K-State.

KU in the Rankings

Junior Ekaterina Morozova recently jumped back into the Campbell’s ITA Women’s Collegiate Tennis Rankings at No. 101 in singles and No. 68 in doubles with partner Dylan Windom. Morozova was ranked as high as No. 65 in singles earlier this season, and in doubles, the pair bettered their previous ranking of No. 73.

Jayhawk Leaders

Freshman Dylan Windom has led the Jayhawks over the last three weeks, riding a six-match winning streak in No. 5 singles and continues to own a perfect 8-0 mark in the fifth spot. Windom and her doubles partner Ekaterina Morozova lead the Jayhawks in that category with a 14-6 mark. The duo is also 6-4 in the Big 12 and after knocking off the No. 51-ranked team from Oklahoma last Sunday, the tandem is 3-0 against nationally ranked pairs.

Scouting the Wildcats

The 45th-ranked Wildcats are enjoying one of their strongest seasons of the decade. Coming into the regular-season finale, Kansas State is 14-6 overall and 5-5 in the Big 12, with the 14 wins being the most in a season since 2003. Led by Ana Gomez-Aleman and Carmen Boureau-Ramos’ stellar seasons, the Wildcats have pulled off a couple big upsets this year, topping Baylor and Texas A&M. K-State defeated the Aggies for the first time in program history and the Bears, the reigning Big 12 Champions, for only the second time.

Kansas owns a commanding lead in the all-time series, leading 39-9. However, the Wildcats have won four of the last six meetings, including a 7-0 sweep of the Jayhawks last season, in Wamego, Kan.

Senior Sendoff

Maria Martinez is a two-year starter who’s steady improvement over her sophomore and junior seasons helped move her up in the lineup. As a sophomore in 2008-09, Martinez posted a career-high 20 singles wins, including a 13-10 mark in dual matches. Her 7-5 Big 12 record was the second-best conference mark on the team and she was awarded Kansas’ sportsmanship honor.

Kate Goff came to KU as a walk-on, and became a contributor on and off the court. In limited action, Goff saw the most success this past season, partnering with Victoria Khanevskaya to a 7-6 record in four fall events.