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Women’s Tennis Hosts Alabama in Friday Night SEC Match

Women’s Tennis Hosts Alabama in Friday Night SEC Match

BATON ROUGE, La.  – The LSU women’s tennis team (13-8, 5-6 SEC) will open the final weekend of the regular season when they take on the Alabama Crimson Tide (14-7, 5-6 SEC) at 5 p.m. CT on Friday night at the LSU Tennis Complex.

No. 29 Alabama (Apr. 12)
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Notes on Alabama
In the series history between Alabama and LSU, the Tigers hold a 34-17 lead. When the teams met last season in Tuscaloosa, Alabama claimed a 4-2 win.

The Crimson Tide enter Friday’s matchup with a 14-7 overall record, 5-6 tally in SEC play and a ranking of No. 29 in the latest team poll. Alabama was last in action just a week ago, where they narrowly fell at home to No. 14 Auburn by a score of 4-3.

Alabama is led in doubles play by Loudmilla Bencheikh and Anne Marie Hiser, who have tallied a 10-3 record at the top doubles court and are currently ranked No. 14 by the ITA. In singles, Bencheikh is ranked No. 51 by the ITA and is joined by Petra Sedlackova, who is ranked No. 102. Four Crimson Tide players are in the double digits in dual match singles wins this season – Klara Milicevic has 12, Hiser and Ola Pitak have 11 while Sedlackova has 10.

Last Time Out
LSU went undefeated on the road last weekend, picking up a 4-2 win at Arkansas on Friday night before wrapping the weekend up with a 4-0 win over Missouri on Sunday.

In Friday’s match against Arkansas, LSU secured the doubles point with wins from Aran Teixidó Garcia and Emma Grant and then Kenna Erickson and Anita Sahdiieva. In singles, Teixidó Garcia defeated No. 26 Carolina Gomez in straight sets for her highest ranked win of her career and was followed with singles wins from Erickson and Gaby Rivera to give the Tigers the win.

Two days later in Missouri, LSU once again took the doubles point as Rivera and Maya Tahan took the first doubles court and was followed by Erickson and Sahdiieva with the clinch. In singles, Erickson, Rivera and Sahdiieva won in straight sets to wrap up a perfect weekend for the Tigers.

Tiger Tidbits
In the latest ITA team rankings, the Tigers moved up six spots to No. 33. In the now-weekly individual rankings, LSU had two players ranked in singles and one doubles duo.

Aran Teixidó Garcia was ranked for the first time this spring, checking in at No. 91. The graduate student from Spain has been at the heart of success this season for the Tigers, posting an 11-4 singles record playing at the top singles courts and a team-leading 12-7 doubles record playing primarily at the No. 2 court.

Joining Teixidó Garcia in the singles rankings is Florentine Dekkers, who checked in at No. 109. Dekkers has earned seven wins this season in singles play playing at the top two singles courts, including two against ranked foes. She enters the final weekend of the regular season on a three-match winning streak.

In doubles, Kenna Erickson and Anita Sahdiieva made their debuts at No. 81. The freshman-junior combo has played at the No. 1 doubles spot for the Tigers since February, where they have picked up five wins together. The duo is fresh off a weekend of back-to-back ranked wins, taking down No. 48 Morgan Cross and Anet Koskel of Arkansas, 6-2, and No. 65 Mae Canete and Inah Canete of Missouri by a score of 6-3.

Sahdiieva’s success in singles leads the team this spring, posting a record of 12-2 playing primarily at the No. 3 spot for the Tigers. Her 12 wins rank the most on the team and her five wins in SEC play are also a team high.

Graduate student Maya Tahan has proven to be a strong member of the lineup this season, posting a 9-4 singles record playing at the No. 4 and 5 singles court.  In addition to her presence in singles, Tahan has also tallied a 9-7 record playing with three different doubles partners this season.

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