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    SEC Women's Tennis Notebook

    The Alabama women’s tennis team took part in the ITA National Indoor Team Championships last weekend, where it went 2-1, moving the Crimson Tide to 6-1 overall for the season. Alabama’s loss came in the first round of the tournament as it dropped a 4-1 decision to 14th-ranked Northwestern. The Tide’s lone point in the match came at No. 2 singles from senior Alexa Guarachi. Alabama bounced back in its two consolation matches, however, winning a pair of 4-3 victories over No. 15 Baylor and No. 11 Texas. The Tide dominated the doubles matches against the Bears, where courts two and three both won, 8-1. The singles matches were competitive, coming down to the final match on court four. After picking up two points on courts six and three to give the Tide a 3-0 lead, the Bears stormed back by winning three straight matches to tie the match up. Senior Antonia Foehse gave the Tide the clinching point when she defeated Victoria Kisialeva, 5-7, 7-6(5), 6-1. In Sunday’s match against the Longhorns, Alabama was edged out in the doubles point as courts two and three fell in tiebreakers, but the Tide would go on to pick up two straight points from wins on courts three and four by freshman Maya Jansen and Foehse. When the Longhorns eventually tied the match up at 3-3, sophomore Emily Zabor clinched the match by dominating her third set 6-0. The women next play on Friday, Feb. 15 against the Washington Huskies in Tuscaloosa. Matches are set to start at 3 p.m. CT.

    The No. 37 University of Arkansas women’s tennis team dropped a second straight tough match, losing a road match 4-3 for the second consecutive week, this time to No. 42 Oklahoma State. The Razorbacks won the doubles point for the sixth time in seven matches, but could not build on that momentum to win the match. Arkansas got two singles victories from senior Claudine Paulson and freshman Ana Lorena Belmar Hernandez, who lead the team as each has a 6-1 singles record. The Razorback freshman class is a combined 19-11 in singles and 22-13 in doubles, including a 6-4 singles and 10-5 doubles record from three new spring additions.

    No. 68 Auburn won a pair of matches over the weekend to move to 5-1 for the season. The Tigers won 6-1 against No. 62 Georgia State at noon on Saturday, and then came back in the evening to beat Samford 4-0. This was Auburn’s second ranked win of the season. Seven players posted wins on the weekend. Auburn utilized its team depth on Saturday playing a total of nine players in the two matches. Jen Pfeifler picked up two singles and doubles wins for a perfect 4-0 weekend. The duo of Jackie Kasler and Emily Flickinger continued their spring success with an 8-4 win over Georgia State to clinch the doubles point and move to a team-high 4-0 dual match record. Pleun Burgmans kicked off singles defeating ITA No. 29 Abigail Tere-Apisah 6-1, 6-0 at the top spot. Kasler maintained her momentum from doubles into singles play winning 7-6, 6-4 on court four … Flickinger clinched the win for the Tigers with a 6-3, 6-3 victory at the No. 3 position. Against Samford, Plamena Kurteva and Paulina Schippers started off the night with an 8-0 triumph on court three. Kasler and Pfeifler clinched the doubles point by winning 8-5 at the No. 2 position. In singles, Maria Cardenas Conti earned a 6-1, 6-0 victory on court five. Pfeifler won 6-1, 6-0 at the No. 3 position. Senior Schippers clinched the win for the Tigers with a 6-0, 6-2 victory on court five. Auburn will return to action Wednesday, Feb. 13 with a doubleheader home match against Alabama State at 10 a.m. CT and Troy at 6 p.m. at the Yarbrough Tennis Center.   

    Florida makes its first road trip of the season, traveling to the state of North Carolina to play a pair of top-10 opponents. The Gators first face No. 3 Duke on Sunday, before battling No. 8 North Carolina on Monday afternoon. Either match could be played indoors depending on the local weather. The Gators have not played since earning a sweep against Baylor on Feb. 2 at home. That match capped UF’s season-opening week when the team played and earned three wins in a five-day span. Senior standout Lauren Embree enters this week’s action with 99 career singles victories and aims to become the 24th Gator to reach the 100-win plateau for singles. In UF’s last match, Embree collected the 100th doubles win of her career. Should Embree win one more singles match she will become just the eighth Gator to win 100 matches on both the singles and the doubles courts.

    Sixth-ranked Georgia went 2-1 on the week, advancing to the semifinals at the ITA National Indoor Team Championships in Charlottesville, Va.  In the round of 16 (Feb. 8), the Bulldogs defeated 11th-ranked Texas by a score of 4-2.  In the Quarterfinals (Feb. 9), Georgia beat seventh-ranked California 4-1.  In the Semifinals (Feb. 10), Georgia lost to the second-ranked UCLA Bruins 4-1. Eighth-ranked Lauren Herring remains the team leader in singles victories at 23-3 while 18th-ranked Maho Kowase is 22-6 and 54th-ranked Kate Fuller is 16-4.   Georgia will return home to square off with Georgia Tech on Saturday, Feb. 23.

    The Kentucky women's tennis team dropped its lone match of the weekend, falling 6-1 to No. 59 Tulane in New Orleans. Freshman Kirsten Lewis recorded the Wildcats' one point in the match, defeating Caroline Magnusson 0-6, 7-6 (1-0) (7) in the No. 5 singles slot. Freshman Nadia Ravita and sophomore Stephanie Fox posted their first losses of the year, with Ravita falling 6-0, 6-4 in the No. 1 slot and Fox 3-6, 7-5, 1-0 (6) in the No. 6 slot.

    The No. 46 Lady Tigers (4-1) had a split week on the road, taking a 4-2 win over Tulane (3-2) Wednesday and facing a 5-2 loss to No. 39 Long Beach State (4-1) Saturday. No. 112 Kaitlin Burns went 2-0 for the week in singles on court three, and senior Ebie Wilson posted a win in the No. 6 position at Long Beach. The doubles team of Mary Jeremiah and Ariel Morton notched two more wins this week in the top position, marking their fourth consecutive win and third straight in the top position. Freshman Ella Taylor made her court two debut against Tulane and scored the Lady Tigers’ second point of the day following LSU’s doubles point victory.

    Ole Miss
    After two weeks since their last action, Ole Miss returns to the courts this weekend to continue a seven-match homestand.  The Rebels will welcome Oklahoma State Friday at 2 p.m. followed by Washington Sunday at 11 a.m.  Junior Caroline Rohde-Moe owns a team-leading 17-6 overall record, 3-0 at No. 1 singles. Sophomore Julia Jones is 11-8 overall, 2-1 in dual matches.

    Mississippi State
    The Mississippi State Lady Bulldogs advanced to 3-0 on the season for the first time since 2009 with a solid 6-1 victory against the Lady Privateers of New Orleans. The team's freshmen continue to impress, as Sarai Flores remains undefeated at the No. 6 position after posting a 6-2, 6-4 win against UNO's Victoria Svennson. Doubles play has also been successful for the Lady Bulldogs. MSU's ranked pair of Alexandra Perper and Naomi Tran posted a straight set win at the No. 1 position against Soledad Arroyo and Kristina Martin of UNO to help clinch the doubles point. MSU will be back in action this Saturday as they host the Cowgirls of Oklahoma State for their fourth straight weekend of home competition.  

    The Mizzou tennis team is 4-1. The Tigers picked up a pair of 4-3 victories over Akron and Princeton in Akron, Ohio, on Feb. 1 and 2. Senior Maria Christensen, junior Cierra Gaytan-Leach and sophomore Alex Clark all went 2-0 in singles action. Gaytan-Leach is now 7-0 at No. 1 singles on the spring season, including a 5-0 mark in dual matches. Mizzou is idle until Wednesday, Feb. 20, when the team hosts UMKC at the Green Tennis Center at 5 p.m. CT.

    South Carolina
    The No. 30 South Carolina women's tennis team took the previous week off from competition and will return to action on Feb. 16 playing at No. 47 VCU. The Gamecocks then head to No. 53 William & Mary the next day. South Carolina is 3-2 this  season and returns home on Feb. 23 when it hosts a doubleheader against Charleston Southern and College of Charleston.

    The Lady Vols were idle this past week.  They hit the courts again on February 15 by hosting Indiana at 5 pm, then host Ohio State on February 17 at 1 pm.

    Texas A&M
    Texas A&M went 2-1 at the ITA National Team Indoor Championships to improve to 4-1 overall. The 13th-ranked Aggies fell to eventual champion North Carolina in the first round and then defeated No. 11 Texas and No. 12 Virginia in the consolations. It is believed to be the first time in program history the Aggies defeated Top 15 teams in back-to-back matches. A&M is undefeated at the Nos. 1, 2 and 3 singles lines in dual matches. Nazari Urbina needs one singles victory to give her 88 for her career and move her into a tie for ninth in A&M records.

    Vanderbilt faced the tough challenge of taking on No. 2 UCLA in the first round of the 2013 ITA National Team Indoor Championship. The Commodores would fall to the Bruins, 4-1, in the first loss of the season. Vanderbilt would then face two Big 10 opponents in consolation matches to round out the weekend in Charlottesville, Va. On Saturday, Vanderbilt took on the No. 17 Nebraska Cornhuskers and the Huskers coming out on top in a match that went all the way to the wire, 4-3. The Commodores wrapped up the weekend on Sunday versus No. 16 Michigan. Michigan would win the match, 4-2, sending Vanderbilt back to Nashville without a win. The Commodores are 4-3 on the season and will head to Texas for a two-match road trip Feb. 16-17. The Commodores will play No. 15 Baylor Feb. 16 in Waco and then No. 38 TCU in Fort Worth Feb. 17.