STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State's Lady Bulldogs tennis squad lifted its record to 3-0 for the first time since 2009 with a 6-1 victory against the Lady Privateers of the University of New Orleans Friday afternoon at the A.J. Pitts Tennis Centre.
State kicked off its third consecutive win by taking the doubles point with shutout triumphs on courts 1 and 3. The No. 54-ranked MSU duo of Alexandra Perper and Naomi Tran posted an 8-0 victory at the No. 1 position against Soledad Arroyo and Kristina Martin of New Orleans. Petra Ferancova and Georgiana Patrasc paired up at the No. 3 position to secure the doubles point, defeating Paula Sanchez and Victoria Svennson of UNO, also in an 8-0 decision. Lien Van Geel and Sarai Flores held a 6-2 lead against the Lady Privateers' Fanny Benincasa and Marta Sans before play was suspended on court 2.
Singles competition began with a default on court two by MSU's Patrasc due to an ankle injury at the end of the first set, which she lost 6-4 to UNO's Martin, tying the overall score at 1-1. But that would be the only point MSU would surrender on the afternoon.
Competition continued as Perper and Flores posted two quick wins for the Lady Bulldogs. Perper notched a 6-4, 6-1 triumph against UNO's Sans at the top spot. Flores raised MSU to a 3-1 lead, defeating Svennson of the Lady Privateers in a 6-2, 6-4 decision on court 6.
Freshman Lien Van Geel clinched MSU's third win of the season with a three-set win at the No. 4 position. Van Geel took the first set 6-2, but dropped the second set to UNO's Benincasa 7-5. The native of Tessenderlo, Belgium, secured the Lady Bulldog win by breezing in the third set 6-1.
Ferancova raised the MSU lead to 5-1 with a 6-3, 7-5 win against Lady Privateers freshman Sanchez at the No. 5 position. Tran completed the successful MSU day, defeating Arroyo of UNO on court 3 6-4, 4-6, 1-0(6).
"We started off with excellent energy and did a great job earning the 1-0 lead in what seemed like record time. I felt like we lost our concentration and let them in the match in singles," said head coach Daryl Greenan. "I give UNO credit for battling hard, but our girls did a nice job keeping their composure and closing out their matches with wins."
The Lady Bulldogs will be back in action Saturday, Feb. 16, at 4 p.m. as they host the Cowgirls of Oklahoma State. Updates for Lady Bulldog tennis can be found at hailstate.com or through Twitter (@mstateWT).
MISSISSIPPI STATE 6, NEW ORLEANS 1
February 8, 2013 - Starkville, Miss.
1. #54 Alexandra Perper/Naomi Tran (MSU) def. Soledad Arroyo/Kristina Martin (UNO) 8-0
2. Lien Van Geel/Sarai Flores (MSU) def. Fanny Benincasa/Marta Sans (UNO) 6-2, susp.
3. Georgiana Patrasc/Petra Ferancova(MSU) def. Paula Sanchez/Victoria Svennson (UNO) 8-0
1. Alexandra Perper (MSU) def. Marta Sans (UNO) 6-4, 6-1
2. Kristina Martin (UNO) def. Georgiana Patrasc (MSU) 6-4, ret.
3. Naomi Tran (MSU) def. Soledad Arroyo (UNO) 6-4, 3-6, 1-0(6)
4. Lien Van Geel (MSU) def. Fanny Benincasa (UNO) 6-2, 5-7, 6-1
5. Petra Ferancova (MSU) def. Paula Sanchez (UNO) 6-3, 7-5
6. Sarai Flores (MSU) def. Victoria Savennson (UNO) 6-2, 6-4Order of finish: Doubles (1,3), Singles (2,1,6,4,5,3)