OXFORD, Miss. - The conditions were not ideal for outdoor tennis, but the Ole Miss women's tennis team battled the cold and wind on Wednesday afternoon at the Palmer/Salloum Tennis Center on their way to a 6-1 win against visiting VCU.
With the win, the Rebels improved to 7-4 overall as they get set to host No. 11 Vanderbilt Friday at 3 p.m., followed by No. 24 Kentucky Sunday at Noon. Fans coming to Friday's match will enjoy a lot warmer temperatures and free pizza between doubles and singles.
Not wanting to be out in the cold longer than necessary, the Rebels didn't waste time getting the first point, winning 8-3 at No. 2 and 8-2 at No. 3 doubles. Newly ranked at No. 55, Zalina Khairudinova and Julia Jones improved to 11-2 overall.
Khairudinova was first off the court in singles, when her opponent, 72nd-ranked Cindy Chala, retired down 6-1, 1-0. It marked the second ranked win for Khairudinova in her last three matches.
Jones followed up with a quick 6-2, 6-1 win over Salome Kvitashvili at No. 3 singles and then Erin Stephens clinched the victory when she finished off VCU's Olga Barsheuskaya 6-2, 6-4 on court five.
"I am proud of the girls for battling not just VCU, but the wind and the temperature as well," head coach Mark Beyers said. "It's never easy, it's a great equalizer. I thought we took care of business in doubles and then won all six first sets against a very talented VCU team. They are not ranked right now, but they've been ranked as high as No. 39, and they've had some tough 4-3 losses against some good teams. To beat them 6-1 on a day like today when you have blustery conditions, is not that easy."
Ole Miss looks to keep the momentum going and win their fourth straight against Vanderbilt, after a huge 4-3 win last year in Nashville. The Commodores have been ranked as high as No. 7 in the nation and come in at 10-4 overall and 3-1 in the SEC. They are led by Georgina Sellyn, who is ranked No. 63 in singles.
The Rebels have also been successful against Kentucky lately, having won five straight against the Wildcats. Kentucky enters the weekend at 13-3 overall and 3-1 in league play. The Wildcats are led by 54th-ranked Nadia Ravita.
"Vanderbilt and Kentucky are two really good teams, obviously," Beyers said. "We know that in the SEC there won't be any easy matches. We've dealt with that the last two weekends. Hopefully we can keep the momentum going and get a couple of wins this weekend."
Here are three pieces to keep in mind as we look ahead to the Ole Miss volleyball team's season-opening weekend in Buffalo, New York, starting with Canisius on Friday morning, the first of four matches over three days at the... read more
For high school football players in Georgia, all roads lead to the Georgia Dome and the state championships. For a handful of Rebels, those roads lead home, as Ole Miss opens the 2014 season against Boise State in the Chick-fil-A... read more
ESPN.com's Brett McMurphy asked each of the 65 coaches from the Power Five conferences to describe their team in one word. Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze's word? Relentless. The same can be said of the Ole Miss defense. And... read more
After playing 110 minutes in a 1-1 draw with Georgia on Friday night, Ole Miss responded with a gutsy 1-0 win over Iowa State on Sunday afternoon. The defense, led by senior goalkeeper Kelly McCormick was the story of the... read more
Big time crowd for @SECNetwork live sports event debut. Record attendance of 1,823 for @OleMissSoccer Let's finish strong.-- Ross Bjork (@RossBjorkAD) August 23, 2014 Ole Miss kicked off the 2014 season in thrilling fashion, rallying to a 1-1 draw with... read more
Like defensive coordinator Dave Wommack, defensive line coach Chris Kiffin has been pleased with his players throughout fall camp, particularly the depth bolstered by the return of junior defensive end C.J. Johnson and the addition of sophomore Fadol Brown and... read more
Three things from Ole Miss soccer head coach Matt Mott, previewing the season opener against Georgia on Friday night. Rebels Look to Take Next Step Ole Miss made history this past season, not only setting a school record for wins,... read more
The return of junior defensive end C.J. Johnson and additions of sophomore Fadol Brown and freshman Marquis Haynes have changed the face of the defensive line, but freshman All-American Robert Nkemdiche remains front and center. With a season of experience... read more
The dean of Southeastern Conferences quarterbacks and the league's leading returner in total offense, passing yards and passing touchdowns, senior Bo Wallace is as healthy and confident as ever, and he's also assumed a more vocal leadership role on the... read more
We Are Ole Miss from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.In case you missed it, "Forward Together: We Are Ole Miss" from earlier this year: Forward Together: We Are Ole Miss from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more