The regular season came to a close this past weekend as the K-State tennis team lost matches to two ranked Big 12 South opponents at the Wamego Recreation Complex.
The Wildcats (4-14, 1-10 Big 12 Conference) came into the weekend matches looking to win consecutive matches for the first time this season.
The No. 35 ranked Texas A&M Aggies and No. 32 ranked Texas Longhorns proved to be too much as they handed the Wildcats a pair of losses to end the conference season.
The first match of the weekend featured the Aggies winning all three doubles matches to win the doubles point as Texas A&M (13-9, 9-2 Big 12) went on to win 5-2 Saturday. The two Wildcats to get on the scoreboard for the Wildcats were Nina Sertic and Natasha Vieira. Sertic won at the No. 3 position, winning 6-1, 7-6, (10-8), while Vieira won at No. 6 position winning 6-1, 6-2 respectively. Head tennis coach Steve Bietau said he thought his team played well in the singles against Texas A&M.
“We were pretty average in the doubles, but outstanding in the singles,” Bietau said. “Nina [Sertic] played extremely well, and Natasha [Vieira] won easily which is quite an accomplishment. I think we had a good performance, but I would have liked to have seen better doubles [play].”
After losing to the Aggies on Saturday, the Wildcats then lost to No. 32 Texas (14-6, 10-1 Big 12) on Sunday, falling 6-1 to the Longhorns.
The Wildcats were blanked in the doubles again, as the Longhorns were just too much to handle as only one Wildcat got on the scoreboard. Winning at the No. 2 position for the Wildcats was Mariya Slupska, winning 3-6, 6-4, 10-7.
Bietau said the doubles teams weren’t what he was hoping for, but did say one player did play well during singles play.
“I think we could have done better in the doubles, it wasn’t a bad performance but it also wasn’t a performance that moved us up,” Bietau said. “There was a great win for Mariya [Slupska] at No. 2 against Texas, and I thought that was her best singles match of the year.”
After going 1-10 in conference play this season, the Wildcats will enter the Big 12 tournament with the 12 seed and their opponent has yet to be decided.
The Wildcats will play either Nebraska or Texas Tech, as their earlier match this season was rescheduled for Wednesday morning. The winner of the Wednesday match is scheduled to play K-State in the 5 v. 12 seed match in the first round of the tournament in Norman, Okla.