Kansas Drops a Heartbreaker to SMU, 4-3

  #62 SMU 4, #75 Kansas 3
SMU Tennis Complex
March 28, 2015
No. 1 – Vaszilisza Bulgova/Dasha Sharapova (SMU) def. Alexis Czapinski/Maria Belen Luduena (KU) 6-3
No. 2- Hristina Dishkova/Holly Verner (SMU) vs. Madison Harrison/Smith Hinton (KU) 5-4 unfinished
No. 3 –  Mary Wright/Macie Elliot (SMU) def. Rachel McNeely/Summer Collins (KU) 6-2
Order of Finish: 3,1
No. 1 – Hristina Dishkova (SMU) def. Maria Belen Luduena (KU)  5-7, 7-5, 6-4
No. 2 – Smith Hinton (KU) def. Anna Kate Anderson (SMU) 6-4, 6-1
No. 3 – Madison Harrison (KU) def. Dasha Sharapova (SMU) 6-0, 5-7, 6-0
No. 4 – Summer Collins (KU) def. Yana Erkeeva (SMU) 7-6, 2-6, 6-0
No. 5 – Vaszilisza Bulgakova (SMU) def. Rachel McNeely (KU) 7-6, 6-0
No. 6 –  Holly Verner (SMU) def. Alexis Czapinski (KU) 6-4, 6-0
Order of Finish: 6,2,3,5,4,1

DALLAS, Texas – The 75th-ranked Kansas women’s tennis team battled down to the wire in a match that took all six singles courts to declare a winner, as it was edge by No. 62 SMU, 4-3, Saturday afternoon at the SMU Tennis Complex. Kansas faced an early deficit after failing to clinch the doubles point, but fought back with several impressive performances in singles only to be edged by the Mustangs, 4-3.

“We’ve got to get our doubles corrected,” Kansas head coach Todd Chapman said. “We gave up two doubles matches without competing the way we needed to. I thought we had some positive things happen. We fought really hard in about four spots. We went away in the second set in a couple of spots, and we have to get that cleaned up.”

After digging early holes on all three doubles courts Kansas was unable to execute a comeback, eventually dropping the doubles point and giving SMU a 1-0 lead heading into singles play.

“We have to get better at the mental-toughness side of things,” Chapman continued. “We’re good enough to win these matches. We need to figure out the right mindset on every single point of every single set.” 

Freshman duo Madison Harrison and Smith Hinton did not go down without a fight. The pair struggled early on, trailing SMU’s Hristina Dishkova and Holly Verner 1-3 intially but the duo fought back to take a 5-4 lead before the match was cut short due to the losses on courts one and three.

With SMU leading 1-0, Kansas’ fighting spirit took over as they won the first set on four out of the six courts in play. Freshman Alexis Czapinski finished first on court six and was unable to overcome an dominant performance by SMU’s Holly Verner and was downed 6-4, 6-0.

Court two was next to wrap up with Hinton once again lifting the Jayhawks by putting on a dominant performance and downing Anna Kate Anderson  6-4, 6-1. Hinton’s win got KU on the board and closed the gap to 2-1 in SMU’s favor.

Harrison finished third on court three after an impressive three-set victory over SMU sophomore Dasha Sharapova. After blanking Sharapova, 6-0, in the first set, Harrison dropped the second set in a 7-5 tie break. She then powered back to stifle Sharapova, 6-0, in the third set and tie the match 2-2.

On court five SMU junior Vaszilisza Bulgakova downed Jayhawk freshman Rachel McNeely, 7-6, 6-0, in straight sets in an attempt to put an end to Kansas’ comeback.

Courts one and three both headed into third sets with SMU leading Kansas 3-2. Freshman Summer Collins battled her way to a three-set victory over SMU’s Yana Erkeeva. After playing five extra points in set one Collins came out the victor in a 7-6 decision. Erkeeva fought back stealing the second set, 6-2, but Collins maintained her composure to dominate the Mustang junior, 6-0, in the third set and tie the overall score at 3-3.

Court one finished last with a three-set thriller. Senior Maria Belen Luduena overpowered SMU’s Dishkova 7-5 in the first set. Dishkova fought back to defeat Luduena in similar fashion, 7-5, in set two. In the final set Dishkova proved to be too much for Luduena winning the set 6-4 and ousting Kansas’ hopes of a comeback.

Kansas will head home for a two-match homestand where they will conclude the remainder of their home schedule against in-state rival Kansas State and non-conference foe Tulsa. Lone senior Maria Belen Luduena will be honored during the match against Kansas State. First serve is slated for 12 p.m., on April 4 at the Jayhawk Tennis Center. 

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