Jan. 24, 2006
ORLANDO - The UCF women's tennis team faces a tough early season test when the Golden Knights travel to No. 2 Florida on Wednesday for a 5 p.m. match.
The Knights need to perform at the top of their game in order to compete with the Gators, who boast five singles players and two doubles tandems in the national rankings. Among them is the country's No. 1 singles player sophomore Diana Srebrovic and the No. 25 ranked duo of junior Nina Suvak and sophomore Whitney Benik.
"We want to give Florida the respect they deserve although we are by no means going up there feeling overwhelmed," said head coach Patricia Allison. "We are ready to not just play a good match, but rather our best match."
The Golden Knights have momentum on their side as they are coming off an impressive 7-0 sweep of Georgia Southern in the season opener on Jan. 21. Allison hasn't made any changes to the singles lineup. Senior Pamela Fernandez delivered a sound 6-1, 6-3 defeat to her opponent at the top spot as did sophomore Anna Yakimchenkova at No. 3 and junior Megan Hunter at No. 6.
Meanwhile, a trio of players proved their mental toughness. Sophomore Jennifer Carati bounced back from being down 5-2 in the first set to take a 7-5, 7-5 victory. Freshman Kenza Belbacha fought to a 6-2, 7-6 win at No. 4, while her classmate Elvira Serrot emerged victorious from a three-set battle, 4-6, 6-3, 6-4, at No. 2.
UCF has not beaten UF in the three previous meetings.