Feb. 3, 2012
#5 Baylor (9-0) vs. #1 Florida (2-0)
Saturday, Feb. 3, 2012 | Noon CT
Waco, Texas | Hurd Tennis Center
WACO, Texas – Baylor will face it stiffest test of the season on Saturday, taking on defending national champion and No. 1-ranked Florida at Noon at the Hurd Tennis Center in Waco, Texas.
While Baylor (9-0) has won eight regular season conference titles and six league tournament titles, and been to five Elite Eights and two Final Fours in head coach Joey Scrivano’s 10 years, they have yet to beat the No. 1 team in the country. The Lady Bears are 0-3 under Scrivano when playing the top-ranked team in the country, with losses to Stanford (2008, 2011) and Northwestern (2008).
However, this Lady Bears team is getting stronger by the week, both on the court and in terms of returning from injury. A big addition in the past week has been freshman Ema Burgic, who returned to the courts two matches ago and has posted back-to-back victories in both singles and doubles without dropping a set.
The top of Baylor’s lineup has continued to show its strength as well, combining for a 35-1 mark on the top four singles courts and an 11-3 mark on the top two doubles courts. Senior Sona Novakova is a combined 9-0 on Courts 2 and 3, while senior Nina Secerbegovic is 9-0 with matches played on Courts 1, 2 and 3. Senior Diana Nakic, ranked No. 14, has the lone loss on the top four courts, but boasts a 6-1 singles mark on Courts 1 and 2. Court 4 has been dominated by sophomore Jordaan Sanford’s 5-0 mark.
In doubles, Nakic and Novakova are 5-0 on Court 2 as partners, but the duo split up and each got wins in Baylor’s last match vs. No. 47 TCU. Nakic partnered with Jordaan Sanford at the top of the lineup for an impressive 8-3 win over TCU’s No. 31 duo of Olivia Smith and Millie Nichols. On Court 3, Novakova teamed with Burgic for the first time this season, and the pair was able to dominate the final stretch for an 8-4 win against TCU’s Stefanie Tan and Simona Parajova.
On the other side of the net, a stacked Florida squad features five ranked singles players and two ranked doubles tandems. The Gators (2-0), who won the 2011 NCAA championship, returned seven letterwinners and three All-Americans this season. All-Americans include third-ranked Allie Will and 25th-ranked Lauren Embree in singles, as well as Will and Alex Cercone in doubles.
Joining Will and Embree in the rankings are No. 4 Joanna Mather, No. 25 Sofie Oyen and No. 41 Cercone. In doubles, the Gators have ranked pairs with No. 10 Oyen and Will, and No. 15 Embree and Mather.
In the all-time series, Florida leads 3-0 with wins in 2005, 2006 and 2007. The teams set a dual match on two different occasions last season, but rain forced a postponement and then cancellation.
Live results will be available on www.BaylorBears.com throughout the match. Also, follow @BaylorWTennis on Twitter for updates.