STARKVILLE, Miss. - Following its first road competition of the spring this past weekend, the Mississippi State Lady Bulldog tennis squad (4-2) returns home Wednesday, prepped to host Samford University (5-3). Match time is set for 3 p.m. at MSU's A.J. Pitts Tennis Centre.
MSU's standout doubles pair of Alexandra Perper and Naomi Tran will be an important component for a Maroon and White win. The duo rose to 4-0 on the dual season after the weekend's competition with consecutive top spot wins against their Minnesota and Wisconsin opponents. State's tandem of Petra Ferancova and Georgiana Patrasc are 3-0 this season at No. 3.
In singles competition, Perper continues to lead the State lineup (now 4-1 in dual match play), while MSU freshmen Patrasc, Lien Van Geel and Sarai Flores could also be deciding factors in the Wednesday match. Patrasc, who has played predominantly at the No. 2 position in her debut season, currently stands at 3-3. Van Geel is also 3-3, while Flores has posted a 4-2 record thus far on the 2013 season, all at the No. 6 position.
For Samford, doubles play has proven to be a strong point. Sophomore Adri Lochner and freshman Carita Moolman have paired up to post a 5-2 record on the dual match season.
The teams have met twice in history, with MSU owning a 2-0 record. They last met in 2010, with MSU taking a 5-2 win in Starkville.
"It should be a tough match," said head coach Daryl Greenan. "We are excited to be back at home, and we hope to get a win and have a good crowd in attendance for Athlete Appreciation Day."
Following Wednesday, competition, State will prepare to open 2013 Southeastern Conference action this weekend as the Lady Bulldogs host No. 17 Auburn Friday, March 1, at 3 p.m. and fifth-ranked Alabama Sunday, March 3, at 1 p.m.
Updates can be found on twitter @mstateWT, and live stats will also be available through hailstate.com.