No. 15 Kansas hits the road for two away matches
LAWRENCE, Kan. – The newly-ranked No. 15 Kansas tennis team looks to extend its wining streak this weekend as the Jayhawks travel to Fayetteville, Arkansas, to face No. 38 Arkansas and Purdue at the George M. Billingsley Tennis Center.
The Jayhawks (4-2) and Razorbacks (3-4) will see each other for the second time this season Friday at 5 p.m. While Arkansas leads the overall series, 12-9, KU won the meeting during ITA Kick-Off Weekend, 4-3. Saturday at 2 p.m., Kansas and Purdue (5-3) will compete for the third time in program history, with the Jayhawks leading the series, 2-0.
Kansas currently has two singles players ranked in the top-125 in No. 1 Anastasia Rychagova and No. 77 Despoina Vogasari. Rychagova enters the weekend with a 14-2 record, including a perfect 4-0 in dual-match play. Senior Vogasari brings her 14-8 overall mark and even 3-3 in dual play to the matches. In doubles, Rychagova and partner Nina Khmelnitckaia are ranked at No. 29 after going 2-1 in dual matches and 9-3 overall. Recently pairing up, Vogasari and Maria Toran Ribes are 2-0 when competing together on court three.
“I think our doubles is a work in progress, but one that is headed in the right direction,” said head coach Todd Chapman. “If there is a positive to losing doubles points to start the season, it was learning that this team can win matches without winning the doubles point. Against good teams it makes life a little easier if you can start the match out up 1-0 instead of down 1-0.”
The Razorbacks’ roster is home to one ranked singles player and three doubles teams. Ana Oparenovic, who sits at 10-10 on the season and 2-5 in dual play seeing time at both the No. 1 and 2 positions, comes in at No. 76. She is also ranked in doubles with Tatum Rice at No. 36 as well as Mia Jurasic as the No. 55 team. Oparenovic and Rice began playing together in dual play and have a perfect 6-0 record. She and Jurasic have just a 1-0 mark on the season.
Also making an appearance on the doubles list are Leolia Jeanjean and Giulia Pairone at No. 43. The duo has played just one match together to set their record at 1-0.
“We expect another hard fought match with Arkansas,” said Chapman. “The last three seasons every match with them has been a battle and we expect nothing less Friday. For Saturday, Purdue is always a solid program and it will be a tough match as well. We need to get through Friday first, but we fully expect our match with Purdue to be tough.”
The Boilermakers began their spring season by winning two matches in one day against Cincinnati (5-2) and Butler (7-0). They have only played one away match, which resulted in a 7-0 loss to Washington State. Currently, Purdue is coming off a hard-fought loss against Tulsa, 4-3.
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