Wildcats Host LSU in SEC Home Opener

LEXINGTON, Ky. – After playing the first three games of the Southeastern Conference slate on the road, the No. 26 Kentucky women’s tennis team will return to the friendly confines of the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Center to play host to No. 18 LSU in its SEC home opener.  The match with the Tigers is slated for Thursday at 6 p.m.

Overall, Kentucky is 11-4 on the year with its only four losses coming against a top-20 opponent.  Headlining the Wildcat lineup is the duo of Mami Adachi and Aldila Sutjiadi, who are ranked as the No. 5 doubles team in the country after bursting onto the national scene with a preseason top-10 ranking for the first time in their careers.  Sutjiadi is also ranked in singles, sitting at No. 42 after jumping up more than 50 spots from the latest singles rankings.  The junior has posted a 6-3 record this season, including a 1-2 record in SEC play after an upset of No. 23 Astra Sharma of Vanderbilt on March 6, 6-3, 6-4.  

Kentucky’s doubles lineup has been instrumental in getting the matches going, as the Wildcats have only dropped two doubles points, both of which were in the opening matches of the season against No. 44 Dartmouth and No. 6 Michigan.  In a recent notable performance against No. 13 Florida, UK deprived the Gators of the opening point for just the second time this season.  Kentucky’s No. 1 duo of Adachi and Sutjiadi handily downed the No. 7 pairing in the nation of Brooke Austin and Kourtney Keegan, 6-1, for their first top-10 win of the championship season.  UK’s No. 2 doubles team of Morgan Chumney and Akvilė Paražinskaitė secured the first point for the Wildcats with their first ranked win of the year, taking down No. 22 Josie Kuhlman and Belinda Woolcock, 6-4.  

LSU currently sits at sixth in the SEC standings with a 2-2 record and 13-5 overall. The Tigers’ two losses in conference action came against No. 15 Auburn and No. 22 Mississippi State, with wins over No. 43 Alabama and No. 37 Ole Miss.  Joana Vale Costa is LSU’s top player, ranked at No. 20 in the latest ITA rankings.  Costa holds a 10-6 record in singles, but is still searching for her first SEC win after going 0-4 in conference play despite pushing a third set in all but one SEC singles match.  She is also on the Tigers’ top doubles team when paired with Ryann Foster for the No. 68 pairing in the nation.  The duo has posted a 7-5 record, but has not picked up a win within the SEC.  Also ranked for the team is Jessica Golovin, ranked No. 57 in the nation with a 7-9 overall record and 1-3 in SEC matches. 

UK athletics marketing, in conjunction with the men’s and women’s tennis programs, is excited to announce the launch of The Wildcat Advantage, Kentucky’s new tennis fan club. Members can accumulate points to trade in and receive prizes by signing in at matches they attend for both the men’s and women’s teams. Members will also be signed up for an email group to receive reminders of upcoming tennis matches. Members of The Wildcat Advantage can earn a point by signing in at each tennis match and can earn additional points for signing friends up for the club. Prizes include The Wildcat Advantage t-shirts, Papa John’s pizza coupons, and exclusive tennis experiences throughout the season.

Live stats for Sunday’s match will be available here.

Visit UKathletics.com for the most up-to-date information on the Kentucky women’s tennis team and all 22 varsity sports. For additional info, notes, and behind-the-scenes updates, follow the team on Twitter at @UKWomensTennis and on Facebook.