Wildcat tennis surrenders early lead to Arizona State, drops first road match of season

Senior Karine-Marion Job prepares to return the ball during the matches at Body First on Feb. 11, 2022. (Archive photo by Sophie Osborn | Collegian Media Group)

Kansas State women’s tennis took an early lead after a doubles victory against Arizona State on Sunday, Feb. 20, but losses in the singles match-ups cost the Wildcats, as the team lost 4-2 at Whiteman Tennis Center in Tempe, Arizona.

The loss was a step back to reality for the Wildcats after starting the season with a 4-1 record, including a sweep this past Saturday over FAU at home.

K-State took two of three matches in doubles but struggled to get off the ground in singles, dropping five of the six matches.

“It ultimately comes down to not having a complete team effort in our singles matches,” head coach Jordan Smith said to K-State Athletics. “Half did excellent, and the other half need to step up.”

The doubles duo of freshman Maria Turco and senior Dinara Alloyarova secured the doubles point for K-State, defeating Natasha Hill and Cali Jankowski, 7-5.

Seniors Karine-Marion Job and Maria Linares pitched in by securing their first doubles win of the season, defeating Sedona Gallagher and Giulia Morlet, 6-1.

Ioana Gheorghita and Florentine Dekkers were the lone doubles pair to drop their match, losing to Patricija Spaka and Domenika Turkovic, 6-1.

Gheorghita was the lone K-State player to secure a win in singles after she was dispatched in her doubles match. She defeated Hill in two sets by scores of 6-3 and 6-0 at the No. 6 spot.

Linares, one of K-State’s top players from a season ago, came up short in her singles match against Turkovic, falling in three sets (4-6, 7-6, 6-3) at the No. 2 spot.

Senior Rosanna Maffei also had an early lead over Gallagher in her singles match but bowed out in three sets as well.

At the No. 1 spot, Job — ranked 68th in the nation — was defeated by Moret in two sets (6-3, 6-3), giving the Sun Devils another point.

“Obviously, credit has to be given to the Arizona State players and coaches,” Smith said. “They found a way to come back and win.”

The loss for K-State is its second of the season. The Wildcats’ next match is on Friday, Feb. 25, at the University of Washington before wrapping up their road trip at Nebraska on March 2.