Kansas Tennis 2010 Season in Review

June 3, 2010


Kansas tennis’ young team knew the 2010 season would be a challenge, as they faced 12 teams that appeared in the national rankings, nine of which played in the Big 12 Conference. Despite playing a difficult schedule, the Jayhawks showed promise and improvement during the season.

KU’s No. 1 doubles team of sophomores Erin Wilbert and Ekaterina Morozova went 8-7 overall and tallied six wins in Big 12 play, the most wins by any of Kansas’ doubles teams. The duo competed with four nationally-ranked doubles teams during the season, including a win over Colorado.

The Jayhawks started the season with a road victory over Drake and returned home to face No. 6 Notre Dame. Although KU fell in the match, freshman Victoria Khanevskaya pushed her opponent to three sets at No. 6 singles and freshman Sara Lazarevic and Morozova pushed their opponents to tiebreakers at No. 2 and No. 1 singles, respectively.

KU then tallied two more home wins versus UMKC and South Dakota before hitting the road for five matches, where it recorded wins over New Mexico State, UTEP and New Orleans. Kansas’ defeat of New Orleans marked the start of a three-match winning streak after they returned home with victories over Saint Louis and Cleveland State to end its non-conference season.

To begin its Big 12 Conference season, KU traveled to Texas to take on a pair of ranked opponents in Texas and Texas A&M. Despite falling in both contests, Kansas’ No. 1 doubles team of Morozova and Wilbert recorded an 8-6 defeat of Texas.

The Jayhawks then returned home for their 32nd-consecutive defeat over Iowa State. Lazarevic recorded her first conference win in the matchup with her three-set and two-tiebreaker victory, which decided the outcome.

KU dropped its next three matches at home to Nebraska and on the road against Kansas State and Missouri. Despite dropping a close 4-3 to Missouri, Khanevskaya won in a three-set thriller, sparking a team-best four-match winning streak for the Jayhawks.

Although the team dropped the next four matches against Colorado, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State, the freshman went on to provide KU with a bright spot with wins against all four schools at the No. 6 singles position.

Kansas ended its conference season at home, falling to Texas Tech and Baylor. The Jayhawks honored their only senior, Kunigunda Dorn, in the match against Baylor.

The Jayhawks entered the Big 12 Championships in Austin, Texas as a No. 12 seed on April 29. They looked to avenge their 5-2 regular season loss to the No. 5-seeded Oklahoma, but fell 4-0 and ended their 2010 season.

The Big 12 Conference honored three Kansas players for their academic achievements for the 2010 season. Dorn, Wilbert and sophomore Alessandra Dzuba were all named to the Academic All-Big 12 First Team in April, marking the third-consecutive year Dorn received the award.

Overall, the 2010 season provided challenges for the Jayhawks, but it marked the end of a senior’s career and signs of promise for the young team.