Wildcats Pick Up First SEC Road Win of the Season Over Ole Miss

OXFORD, Miss. – Having previously dropped two Southeastern Conference dual matches in which the score was deadlocked at 3-3, Kentucky women’s tennis broke through the barrier and finished strong in its 4-3 victory over No. 36 Ole Miss on Thursday night.  With the victory, the Wildcats move to 14-6 on the season, including 3-5 in SEC action, while the Rebels fall to 9-7 (2-7 SEC).

Kentucky quickly secured the opening point with another dominant showing in doubles.  Nadia Ravita and Justina Mikulskytė moved up to the No. 2 doubles position and rose to the occasion with a 6-0 blanking of Natalie Suk and Tea Jandric.  On Court 1, UK’s Mami Adachi and Aldila Sujitadi, ranked No. 3 in the nation, added a quick victory to clinch the first point with a 6-2 victory over No. 26 Mai El Kamash and Arianne Hartono.  

Singles play did not prove to be as quick an outing as doubles action, as four of the six matches went to extra sets.  Ole Miss tied the score at 1-1 when Ravita fell to No. 98 El Kamash in 6-2, 6-4 sets, and the Rebels went on to take a 3-1 lead with wins at the No. 1 and 2 spots.  After winning the opening set on Court 1, 6-4, Mikulskytė fell to No. 37 Hartono with a 6-3 setback in the second before the Rebel capped off the match with a 6-2 deciding set.  In No. 2 singles, No. 49 Sutjiadi suffered a 6-0 setback to No. 97 Suk in the first set, but retained poise and retaliated with a 6-4 win in the second set.  The deciding set went back-and-forth, with Suk edging out the Wildcat in extra games, 7-6.

The 3-1 advantage that the Rebels held quickly diminished with a 6-0, 6-3 victory by Adachi in No. 5 singles over Allie Sanford.  The sophomore has been instrumental in the Wildcat’s singles success as of late, recently clinching the victory over Tennessee with a three-set battle last Saturday.  Rookie Akvilė Paražinskaitė equalized the score with a three-set victory in No. 4 singles over Zalina Khairudinova.  Paražinskaitė dropped her first set, 6-4, but bounced back with 6-2, 6-4 sets in the second and third.  

With the dual on the line, Kirsten Lewis showcased her grit with a three-set win over Marija Milutinovic in the No. 6 spot.  Lewis won the opening set in extra games, 7-5, but dropped the second in a 6-3 decision.  The senior went into her third set with all other singles action having reached completion, and ground out a 6-4 win to secure the victory for the Wildcats.

Kentucky remains on the road for the weekend, taking on No. 28 Mississippi State on Saturday, April 2.  The Wildcats will take on the Bulldogs at 2 p.m. ET.

#23 Kentucky 4, #36 Ole Miss 3
Singles  (Order of Finish:  3, 1, 2, 5, 4, 6*)
1.  No. 37 Arianne Hartono (UM) def. No. 76 Justina Mikulskytė (UK), 4-6, 6-3, 6-2
2.  No. 97 Natalie Suk (UM) def. No. 49 Aldila Sutjiadi (UK), 6-0, 4-6, 7-6
3.  No. 98 Mai El Kamash (UM) def. Nadia Ravita (UK), 6-2, 6-4
4.  Akvilė Paražinskaitė (UK) def. Zalina Khairudinova (UM), 4-6, 6-2, 6-4
5.  Mami Adachi (UK) def. Allie Sanford (UM), 6-0, 6-3
6.  Kirsten Lewis (UK) def. Marija Milutinovic (UM), 7-5, 3-6, 6-4
 
Doubles (Order of Finish:  2, 1*)
1.  No. 3 Mami Adachi/Aldila Sutjiadi (UK) def. No. 26 Mai El Kamash/Arianne Hartono (UM), 6-2
2.  Nadia Ravita/Justina Mikulskytė (UK) def. Natalie Suk/Tea Jandric (UM), 6-0
3.  Zalina Khairudinova/Marija/Milutinovic (UM) vs. Akvilė Paražinskaitė/Kirsten Lewis (UK), 4-3, abandoned
 
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