Rychagova, Smagina qualify for main draw at ITA All-American
PACIFIC PALISADES, Calif. – Kansas senior Anastasia Rychagova and freshman Sonia Smagina were victorious Wednesday in the qualifying bracket of the ITA All-American Championships at the Riviera Tennis Club, advancing to the main doubles draw.
The pair’s first-match win came by way of a default, as one of the Pepperdine players had to withdraw from competition due to injury. In their final match of the qualifying bracket, KU’s duo teamed up to defeat Boston College’s Kylie Wilcox and Jackie Urbinati, 8-6, in the third round.
With the win, this Jayhawks doubles team advanced to the main draw of the tournament, which starts Oct. 4 and runs through Oct. 7. There, they will join teammates Nina Khmelnitckaia and Janet Koch, who automatically qualified for the doubles main draw by claiming the Oracle ITA National Summer Championships doubles crown in Fort Worth, Texas, in August.
Assistant coach Caroline Lilley
On today’s match:
“Watching Nas and Sonia compete today was enjoyable on every level. They played with heart, continued to stick with aggressive patterns, and never wavered from the focus and intensity that is the foundation of Jayhawk tennis.”
- With Rychagova and Smagina advancing to the doubles main draw via the qualifying rounds in Pacific Palisades this week, they make history along with Khmelnitckaia and Koch, who had already qualified for the doubles main draw, marking the first time in program history that the Jayhawks have had more than one doubles team competing in the prestigious Riviera ITA All-American Championships.
- The 2018 season marks the first time the Jayhawks have had both singles and doubles players represented in the main draw.
- Khmelnitckaia and Koch will face Tennessee’s tandem of Ariadna Riley and Kaitlin Staines, who are ranked No. 18 in the nation.
- KU’s duo of Rychagova and Smagina has drawn competition from LMU in the pairing of No. 13-ranked Veronica Miroshnichenko and Eva Marie Voracek of Loyola Marymount.
- First serve for both of Kansas’ doubles teams is set for 10 a.m., local.
- Kansas and Stanford are the only two schools with multiple doubles teams and a singles player competing in this year’s main draw of the tournament.
Rychagova/Smagina (Kansas) def. Lahey/Levashova (Pepperdine), default
Rychagova/Smagina (Kansas) def. Wilcox/Urbinati (Boston College), 8-6
Along with playing in the doubles main draw, Rychagova, the preseason No. 6-ranked singles player by the ITA, will be competing in the singles main draw for back-to-back years. Last fall, Rychagova lost in the first round of the main draw, but then proceeded to play her way through the consolation bracket all the way to being crowned the champion of the backdraw. Play begins Thursday, Oct. 4, at the Riviera Tennis Club in Pacific Palisades, California. She is set to take on Marianna Petrei of Idaho, who is ranked No. 20 nationally, at 1:30 p.m., local.
In addition to competition continuing to take place in California, other members of the Kansas tennis team will be participating in another tournament starting Friday, Oct. 5. Maria Toran Ribes, Malkia Ngounoue and Julia Deming will all be taking part in the H-E-B Invitational over the weekend. In addition to host Baylor, other teams slated to compete in Waco, Texas, are LSU, Texas, Tennessee, North Texas, Texas-San Antonio and Incarnate Word. Play begins at the Hurd Tennis Center at 10 a.m., Friday morning.
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