Rebels Ready For SEC Championship

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM
Erin Stephens

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM
Erin Stephens
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM

April 16, 2013

TWITTER: @OleMissWTennis, @SECTennis, HASHTAG: #SECWT13
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OleMissWTennis
SEC Championship Central

OXFORD, Miss. – The No. 9 seed Ole Miss women’s tennis team heads to Starkville, Miss., this week for the SEC Championship.  The Rebels will face the No. 8 seed, South Carolina, Thursday at 8 a.m. at the A.J. Pitts Tennis Centre.

The winner of this match will get top-seeded Georgia in the quarterfinals Friday at 8 a.m.

Ole Miss comes into the tournament ranked No. 39 with a 15-12 overall record.  The Rebels finished the SEC regular season at 5-7 after splitting their last two matches against Missouri and Texas A&M.

The Rebels are led by junior Caroline Rohde-Moe, who is ranked No. 44 in the nation with a 25-17 overall record.   Rohde-Moe is also ranked No. 40 in doubles with freshman Marija Milutinovic.  Sophomores Julia Jones (6-5) and Erin Stephens (7-2) combined to go 13-7 in the SEC to lead the team.

South Carolina ended the regular season with a 4-3 loss to Kentucky to fall to 13-10 overall and 6-7 in the SEC.  The Gamecocks are led by 77th-ranked Jaklin Alawi who owns a 15-20 overall record, 6-12 at No. 1 singles.

The last time these two teams met in Columbia, the Gamecocks won 4-0.

“Playing South Carolina again, we hope to get some revenge and play a lot better than we did the last time we played them,” head coach Mark Beyers said.  “We definitely did not play that great at their place.  They’re a good team, but if we play the way I know we can, than we have an opportunity to win the match.  We’re excited about it.”

The Rebels’ SEC record could have been even better, but for a few 4-3 losses early on in the season.

“We’ve had some close losses and some good wins,” Beyers said.  “In a long year, you’re going to have ups and downs.  We had a good win over Missouri last Friday.  We would love to get a win over South Carolina and another opportunity to play Georgia.”

All matches during the tournament will feature live scoring as well as updates on the official tournament Twitter account, @SECTennis.  When tweeting about the SEC Women’s Tennis Championship, use the hashtag #SECWT13.

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