Two Wildcats make All-Big 12 tennis team

By The Mercury

The Kansas State women’s tennis team was rewarded Wednesday with a pair of student-athletes on the All-Big 12 singles and doubles teams in an announcement by the league office.

Honored for the second straight season were junior Petra Niedermayerova and senior Karla Bonacic. Niedermayerova also collected the inaugural Big 12 Scholar-Athlete of the Year award for women’s tennis.

“Consistency is always important and it doesn’t matter the sport,” K-State head coach Steve Bietau on his pair of Big 12 honorees. “When you have somebody that performs at a high level on a consistent basis like Petra and Karla, to me, that is one of the most impressive things that you can do.

“It has been valuable for our team and it has been a lot fun to work with them and it has been a pleasure to be around them.”

This is the fifth season Bietau has placed two of his players on the All-Big 12 singles team and the first time he has done so in consecutive seasons since the 2000 and 2001 campaigns.

The All-Big 12 doubles honor for the tandem of Bonacic and Niedermayerova marks the second straight season the duo has earned the recognition and becomes the second doubles team in school history to earn the award in consecutive seasons (Yana Dorodnova and Lena Piliptchak, 1997 & 1998).

With her award on Wednesday, Niedermayerova is the second player in school history to earn three straight All-Big 12 singles honors, joining former Wildcat Alena Jecminkova from 2000-02.

Niedermayerova, a two-time Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) All-American and the 2011 Big 12 Player of the Year, is currently No. 15 in the ITA national singles rankings. Niedermayerova owns an overall record of 30-9 (.769) this season, including a 6-3 record in Big 12 play from the No. 1 position in the lineup. Her career-high 30 wins this season rank second in school history for wins in a season.

Niedermayerova earned a seeded position into the 2013 Division-I Tennis Singles Championships, and by doing so, is automatically rewarded with ITA All-American status for the second straight year.

Bonacic, a two-time All-Big 12 selection in singles, completed her singles career with an overall record of 75-41 (.647) to rank fifth in school history for career singles victories and fifth for career singles winning percentage.

In Big 12 action this season, the product of Split, Croatia, registered a team-leading record of 7-2 from the No. 2 two position in the lineup. Over the last two seasons, Bonacic is 14-4 in Big 12 action.

K-State’s No. 1 doubles tandem and 2013 Big 12 No. 1 one doubles champions, Niedermayerova and Bonacic garnered their second straight All-Big 12 doubles citation. The duo is currently No. 26 in the ITA doubles rankings and own an overall record of 21-10 this season.

The tandem ended the season by winning 10 of its final 12 matches and finished Big 12 action with a 7-2 record. Over the last three seasons when paired together, Bonacic and Niedermayerova are 34-26 and have been ranked together in the ITA doubles rankings for 12 straight rankings.

Niedermayerova and Bonacic were one of five doubles pairs from the Big 12 to be selected into this year’s 32-team doubles Championship field. The duo earned one of the 21 at-large bids into the field. K-State will be represented among the 32-team doubles portion of the championship for the first time since the 1995 season and for just the second time in school history.

K-State will begin competition at the singles and doubles championships on May 22 in Urbana, Ill.

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