Lady Bears welcome the Bearkats to Waco on Thursday at 3:30 p.m.
WACO, Texas - To start the 2013 dual-match season, Baylor's 15th-ranked women's tennis team will face Sam Houston State on Thursday at 3:30 p.m. at the Hurd Tennis Center.
"We're excited to kick off our season," head coach Joey Scrivano said. "We have a young and unproven team, and it's going to be great to start seeing how they respond in pressure situations. Sam Houston State is going to be that first opportunity to gauge where we stand right now."
Baylor boasts four returning players from a squad that was 25-8 and reached the NCAA round of 16 for an eighth straight season in 2012.
The 2013 roster features four juniors, two sophomores, one redshirt freshman and two freshmen. Ema Burgic, who notched a 17-3 record in individual play, is the only ranked singles player on the roster at No. 16. Burgic and her teammate Jordaan Sanford are also listed at No. 27 in doubles rankings.
Transfers Alex Clay and Alex Leatu joined the squad in August, but did not compete during fall play. Freshmen Kiah Generette and Maria Biryukova came on board with the Lady Bears to start the new year.
Baylor is 5-4 all-time vs. the Bearkats. BU won the last match between the two teams, 8-1, on Jan. 31, 1991.
This is also the first dual-match of the 2013 season for the Bearkats, a team that has seven returning players for the 2013 season. The Bearkats, coached by Jim Giachino, finished the 2012 season with a 12-9 record. Sam Houston State is led by senior Tanya Postnikova, who was named "Most Valuable Player" during the 2011-12 season. She finished with an 18-8 singles record, going 9-2 at the number four singles position.
Last weekend, the Lady Bears closed out the HEB Invitational at the newly built Hawkins Indoor Tennis Center. Megan Horter claimed the singles title, and the undefeated tandem of Burgic and Kisialeva won the doubles crown.
Following the contest vs. SHSU, Baylor will host the ITA Kick-Off Weekend, which serves as the qualifying rounds for the ITA National Team Indoor Championships. BU will welcome Texas Tech, Rice and Florida State to the Hurd Tennis Center for the two-day event that starts on Saturday at 11 a.m.