Kansas Set to Host, Compete in Big 12 Tennis Championships
April 24, 2007
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The University of Kansas will open up play in the 2007 Big 12 Championships on Thursday in Kansas City where it will compete as the No. 11 seed. The event, which is being hosted by KU, will open with women’s first round action on Thursday and conclude with the men’s and women’s championship contests on Sunday morning.
KU’s first round opponent will be determined on Wednesday when Nebraska and Texas Tech conclude a match that was suspended earlier this season due to bad weather. Kansas will face either Nebraska or Oklahoma at 1:30 on Thursday in the opening round, depending on the outcome of Wednesday’s results.
The Jayhawks finished their regular season with record of 4-16, including a 2-9 Big 12 mark. This season’s schedule proved to be a formidable one for KU, as 11 of its 20 opponents appear in the latest ITA national rankings.
Pacing Kansas in singles play this season has been sophomore Yuliana Svistun, who finished with a 14-6 record this spring playing mostly in the No. 5 position. The Ufa, Russia, native notched a mark of 8-3 in conference matches, and finished with the league’s second best record in the No. 5 slot. Also putting together a solid resume in dual matches was sophomore Edina Horvath, whose 10 singles wins were the team’s second most.
Kansas’ tandem of Horvath and junior Elizaveta Avdeeva dominated the No. 1 doubles position all season for the Jayhawks, going a combined 22-9 in fall and spring competition, including a 7-4 conference record. The tandem can finish no lower than second place in the league’s standings at the No. 1 slot, depending on Wednesday’s make-up contest between NU and TTU.
Last season, the Jayhawks entered the Big 12 Championships as the No. 8 seed and defeated ninth-seeded Colorado, 4-3, in the first round. After dropping the doubles point and two of the first three singles contests to fall behind, 3-1, KU staged a comeback, getting wins from Avdeeva, junior Stephanie Smith and former Jayhawk Christine Skoda to clinch the victory. Kansas was then defeated by top-seeded and eventual champion Baylor in the quarterfinals.
Baylor will again be the top seed in the women’s bracket after finishing the season with a 19-6 overall record and 10-1 league mark. The Bears will also be the No. 1 seed in the men’s tournament after an undefeated league campaign en route to a 22-3 regular season.
The event is being held at the Plaza Tennis Center, located at the heart of Kansas City’s historic Country Club Plaza. The facility has garnered numerous awards and recognitions, including being named the USPTR Public Facility of the Year award in 2005.
For more information about the Big 12 Championships including brackets and live results as they become available, visit Championship Central.