Courtesy: UALR Sports Information
Junior Viktoriya Plyuta
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UALR Tennis Battles UA-Fort Smith Wednesday Afternoon
UALR Sports Information
Release: 01/29/2013

LITTLE ROCK - The UALR tennis team (2-1) prepares for its fourth match of the season as it travels to Fort Smith, Ark., to take on UA-Fort Smith. Doubles action between the Lady Lions and Trojans is set to begin at 1 p.m. UALR then returns home to kick off Sun Belt Conference play against Troy on Saturday (Feb. 2) at 11 a.m. at Burns Park in North Little Rock.

Currently, the Trojans have won a total of nine individual matches after defeating Central Arkansas 5-2 on Thursday (Jan. 24). Freshman Kamilla Galieva, senior Yana Kakovkina, senior Veronique Luksich and sophomore Dané Vorster all have two wins each to lead the Trojans. Sophomore Michaela McShane is 1-0 in singles matches.

In doubles action, Kakovkina and junior Viktoriya Plyuta is 1-2 while Galieva and Luksich are 1-1.

Both teams squared off last year in North Little Rock with the Trojans taking a 5-2 win over the Lady Lions. It all started with a UALR sweep in doubles action. Plyuta and Kakovkina won 8-3 at first doubles before Luksich and McShane claimed an 8-2 win at second doubles. Already up 1-0, UALR put an exclamation point on doubles action with Nina Yates and Alla Kravchuk winning 8-1.

In singles action, Luksich won 6-1, 6-4 in the second slot. Kakovkina recorded a thrilling, come-from-behind victory at third singles 2-3, 6-3, 10-6 over UAFS's Masa Podunavac. McShane cruised to a 6-2, 6-1 win over Amy Belanger at fourth singles while Kravchuk took the win in the final singles match of the day.

Plyuta lost a tight match at fifth singles 6-1, 1-6, 10-6.

UALR opens up Sun Belt Conference play Saturday against Troy. UALR lost 6-1 last year during the regular season before falling to Troy 4-0 in the Sun Belt Conference championships. March 18, 2012 in Troy, Luksich went 2-0 on the day. She teamed up with McShane at second doubles for the 8-6 win. At second singles, Luksich took a straight-setter (6-2, 6-2) over Troy's Lyubov Dorofeeva.

In the Sun Belt championships April 18, 2012, Luksich and McShane claimed an 8-1 win at second doubles.

So far in 2013, Troy is 0-1 with a 6-1 loss at 38th-ranked Florida State on Jan. 15. Rosaura Ramirez-Vega won by default at sixth singles while she and teammate Candela Munoz Giron won by default at third doubles. At second singles, Hannah Tory lost a tough first set 7-6 before dropping the second 6-3 to 48th-ranked Mia Vriens.

After the two matches this week, the UALR tennis team returns to action Feb. 9 when it hosts North Alabama in North Little Rock. Match time is set for 11 a.m.

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