Tennis team looks to bounce back against rival Jayhawks

Senior players Iva Bago and Livia Cirnu defend the courts at Mike Goss tennis stadium on March 30, 2017. (File Photo by Kelly Pham | The Collegian)

The Kansas State tennis team will head to Lawrence to play the Jayhawks Saturday as the Wildcats look to snap their three-match slump.

The Wildcats (11-11) are coming off a tough outing in Oklahoma. Oklahoma State handled the Wildcats in a controlling 4-0 victory. K-State later took on the Oklahoma Sooners, where the Wildcats could not find their rhythm, falling 4-2.

The Wildcats will head to the Jayhawk Tennis Center seeking to improve their 2-4 Big 12 record.

Despite the Jayhawks having an extremely young team that includes three freshmen, three sophomores and only one senior, Kansas has had a solid season. They are 11-6 and have only lost two matches when competing at home.

Kansas also took a road trip to Oklahoma last weekend, taking on Oklahoma State and Oklahoma as well. It did not go well for the young Jayhawk squad. They were shut down in each of the two matches, falling 4-0 in each.

Prior to last weekend’s outing, Kansas had a four-game win streak. They have also beat a top team earlier this season, taking down No. 22 TCU 4-1.

Kansas has rallied behind their top two spots. At No. 1, sophomore Anastasia Rychagova has seen struggles of late, but has an overall dual record of 7-3.

Tess Bernard-Feigenbaum, the lone senior, is rock solid at the No. 2 spot, undefeated at 7-0 with an overall dual record of 10-2.

During last season’s match-up, the Jayhawks got the better of the Wildcats, winning 4-2. However, their young team could be a factor during this year’s outing.

Nearly the entire K-State team is looking to come out with vengeance this weekend after only two players getting in the win column during singles competition in the Oklahoma road trip.

Senior Maria Panaite, one of the players who won last weekend, continues to turn in complete performances this year, bringing her overall record to 10-5.

The other is young talent, freshman Ines Mesquita, who has brought her Big 12 record to 4-2, which is the best on the team.

K-State will conclude the season in Texas. On April 21, they will take on the Baylor Bears at 5 p.m., followed by the Texas Longhorns on April 23 at 11 a.m.