TULSA, Okla. — Looking to end a three-match skid and its first win in the month of February, the 53rd-ranked Kansas State women’s tennis team jumped out to a quick lead and never looked back to register the 250th career win for K-State head coach Steve Bietau on Saturday.
The Wildcats registered a 5-2 win over UT-Arlington at the Michael D. Case Tennis Center.
Bietau, the second-longest tenured head coach in K-State athletics history, now owns a career record of 250-329 in his 28th season with the Wildcats.
K-State is now 3-5 this season, while the Mavericks fell to 3-2.
Bietau, when asked about his 250th win, said he has been pleased with how his young players have responded to a difficult early schedule.
“I’m just glad I am still standing and able to put one foot in front of the other one,” he siad. “I am happy we saw some progress from our team. We are asking a lot of our players, especially the freshmen. They have been put under the gun here and it is a tough, difficult process for them in an accelerated time frame.
“I am excited about what the future holds for this group.”
K-State captured the first point of the afternoon with a clean sweep through doubles play. The No. 28 ITA ranked duo and number one pair of Petra Niedermayerova and Marketa Trousilova was reunited to tally an 8-2 win over Maria Martinez-Romero and Nikola Matovicova.
Niedermayerova and Trousilova are now 6-2 this season when paired together including a 3-1 mark this spring.
Clinching the doubles point for the Wildcats was the pairing of Ana Gomez Aleman and Petra Chuda at number three. The K-State duo registered an 8-6 win over Verena Scott and Christine Foote. This was the first time Gomez Aleman and Chuda have been paired together since April 3, 2011, with duo owning a 6-5 mark together over the last two seasons.
In singles action, freshman Amina St. Hill quickly blanked Foote at number five, 6-0, 6-0, to push K-State ahead, 2-0. The win by St. Hill ended a three-match skid for the first-year Wildcat.
“Today was a little more of a team effort than we have had recently,” said Bietau of the recent struggles. “We have been leaning heavily on the top of our lineup and it was good to see the bottom half of the lineup come through.”
Junior Karla Bonacic increased K-State’s lead to 3-0, with her sixth win this spring at number two singles. The No. 94 ranked player in the country dispatched of Natalia Mayuk, 6-0, 6-2. Bonacic is now 45-30 in her career and 12-6 this season.
Closing out the match for the Wildcats was No. 17 Niedermayerova. The sophomore from Brno, Czech Republic, captured her seventh straight win with a 6-3, 6-0 victory over Martinez-Romero. Niedermayerova now possesses a 37-17 career record and a 13-7 mark this season.
All 13 of her victories this season have come in straight sets. Bietau is pleased with the way Bonacic and Niedermayerova have handled the early part of the schedule.
“Their performances have been something special when you consider the schedule they have played and the record they have after that,” he said. “They have played lights out for us and are a great example for the rest of the team. We need to get everyone on the same page and have everyone put out the same effort that those two are.”
K-State returns to action this Saturday as the Wildcats play their first home match in the spring of 2012. K-State will host UALR at Body First Tennis and Fitness Center, with the match beginning at 11 a.m. All K-State tennis matches are free and open to the public.