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Arkansas, Missouri on Gamecocks' Home Slate This Weekend
Women's Tennis  . 

Arkansas, Missouri on Gamecocks' Home Slate This Weekend

South Carolina Hosts Razorbacks on Friday, Tigers on Sunday

Attention Fans

The Gamecocks will be following strict guidelines with adherence to the SEC Medical Guidance Task Force Requirements for COVID-19 Management. Attendance at South Carolina women’s tennis matches this spring is restricted to PASS LIST ONLY for home matches at Carolina Tennis Center. We encourage fans to follow the matches via our live scoring and live video links as well as our social media platforms.

COLUMBIA, S.C. — The No. 39 South Carolina women’s tennis team is back in action this weekend hosting No. 20 Arkansas on Friday at 5 p.m. and No. 41 Missouri on Sunday at 1 p.m. at Carolina Tennis Center.

The Gamecocks bring a 4-9 overall record into the matches and are 1-5 in league play after three weeks of SEC competition. The Razorbacks stand 10-1 and are 4-1 in the SEC, while the Tigers are 13-7 and 1-4 in the conference.

Last Time Out

The Gamecocks dropped a 4-0 decision to No. 3 Georgia in their last match on the Bulldogs’ home courts in Athens on Sunday.

Georgia kicked off the match with 2-1 leads on all three courts in doubles. At the No. 3 spot, Meg Kowalski and Lea Ma held on to defeat Silvia Chinellato and Elise Mills by a 6-4 score. Megan Davies and Mia Horvit, ranked 29th, fought off two match point opportunities on Davies’ serve in the 10th game against Katarina Jokic and Ariana Arseneault at No. 1 doubles to tie the score at 5-all. After the Bulldogs held serve in the next game, they went on to break Horvit to earn a 7-5 triumph and 1-0 lead heading to singles.

The Bulldogs were too much in singles for the Gamecocks, picking up victories in straight sets on courts three, four and six to earn the win. No. 73 Morgan Coppoc was the first to finish in singles by downing Allie Gretkowski by scores of 6-1, 6-4 on court four, and No. 60 Meg Kowalski was next off the court with a 6-2, 6-3 win against Silvia Chinellato at three.

Despite the 3-0 deficit, the Gamecocks continued to fight on the remaining four courts. At six, Lindsay Tulenko had a 4-3 lead in the first set over Elena Christofi, but Christofi was able to come back and take the first set 6-4. In the second set, Christofi jumped out to a 3-0 lead and after Tulenko snagged a game, Christofi claimed another three games in a row for a 6-4, 6-1 triumph to give Georgia the win.

Gamecock Notables

  • South Carolina has shown strength in doubles play this season, winning the doubles point eight times in 13 matches. Overall, the Gamecocks have a 20-12 record in doubles matches this spring, and they have won the doubles point five times in their past seven matches.
  • Mia Horvit and Silvia Chinellato lead the team in singles victories for 2020-21 with seven, while Horvit has the most wins in doubles as an individual with 10. The combo of Horvit and Megan Davies is the Gamecocks’ winningest pair with eight.
  • Freshman Lindsay Tulenko made her collegiate debut in a dual match at Georgia on March 7 playing the No. 6 singles position. It was special for Tulenko not only because it was her first career start but also because her hometown of Bogart, Ga., is just outside of Athens.
  • Megan Davies hit the 75-win plateau in both singles and doubles with victories against LSU. She is the 25th player in school history to achieve 75 singles wins and just the 11th to hit 75 in doubles. Davies is also the 10th Gamecock to hit the mark for both singles and doubles, and she ranks 14th all-time for combined victories with 150.
  • Freshman Allie Gretkowski posted the first SEC singles win of her career by defeating Anne Marie Hiser from Alabama on Feb. 21. Earlier in the year, she earned her first career win against a ranked player versus Georgia Tech by downing No. 123 Gia Cohen in straight sets.
  • Allie Gretkowski and Ana Cruz have been a formidable duo for the Gamecocks this season, going 5-0 at No. 3 doubles. As a team, the Gamecocks have lost just twice at No. 3 doubles with a 9-2 record.
  • Megan Davies’ current doubles ranking of No. 29 with Mia Horvit is the highest of her career.
  • The Gamecocks’ highest ranked doubles tandem is currently Silvia Chinellato and Emma Shelton at No. 20. They finished 2019-20 with the team’s top mark at 13-4 and were ranked as high as No. 12 nationally. Chinellato and Shelton went 3-3 in the fall together and are 3-1 together this spring.
  • Prior to South Carolina’s loss at Auburn this season, the Gamecocks had won 16 consecutive regular-season SEC road matches dating back to the 2017 campaign. Previously, the Gamecocks’ last loss on the road was against Vanderbilt on April 14, 2017.
  • South Carolina has an impressive SEC record since the 2018 season with a 28-8 record in regular-season matches.
  • South Carolina was scheduled to face Michigan in a consolation match of the ITA Kickoff Weekend on Jan. 24, but the Michigan athletics department announced late the night before it was putting a pause on competition for all of its athletics teams due to updated protocols needing to be in place for the new variant of COVID-19.
  • Mia Horvit is closing in on history this spring, looking to join the 100-win club in singles. She currently owns a 93-43 record in singles and is in a tie for seventh place with Tamara Sutton (1998-02). Natasa Vuckovic (2005-09) is next on the list with 96. Only three Gamecocks have reached 100 victories with Rita Winebarger (1984-88) leading the way at 127 followed by Ana Marija Zubori (2006-10) with 109 and Lynn-Yin Tan (1998-02) at 103.
  • Mia Horvit’s current career win total of 167 matches between singles and doubles ranks 10th in school history. In ninth place is Gira Schofield (2005-09) with 170.
  • Head coach Kevin Epley is in his ninth season with the Gamecocks and is closing in on his 300th career win. Epley currently has a 291-134 mark in 17 seasons as a head coach at three schools. Epley has amassed a 140-75 record as South Carolina’s head coach and boasts an impressive 63-38 record in regular-season SEC play. He led the Gamecocks to their first SEC title in 2019 when South Carolina captured the SEC Tournament after finishing the regular season with a 12-1 record.
  • Mia Horvit has more wins in NCAA Tournament play than any Gamecock in school history. Between the team and individual tournaments, Horvit owns an impressive 17-3 record.
  • The Gamecocks ended the 2020 season riding a five-match winning streak that saw their overall record move to 8-4. They began SEC play with a 4-0 record after wins against Auburn, Alabama, Texas A&M and LSU. Georgia was the only other undefeated team in league play with a 3-0 record when the season was lost due to the pandemic.
  • Both Mia Horvit and Silvia Chinellato elected to use the extra year of eligibility granted by the NCAA to play one more season after their senior years were cut short by COVID-19. Horvit is a two-time All-American and has been a member of the All-SEC Team three years in a row. She was named the UTR/ITA National Player of the Week just days before the 2020 season was postponed and later canceled. Chinellato was off to a hot start in SEC play last season with a 4-0 singles record and a 3-1 mark for doubles. She was ranked as high as No. 12 in the nation for doubles alongside Emma Shelton last spring.
  • Since the SEC began crowning a regular-season and tournament champion in 2000, only four teams have won the SEC Tournament. South Carolina became the fourth in 2019, joining Florida, Georgia and Vanderbilt as the only teams to win the event.
  • South Carolina has won 20 or more matches each of the past three full seasons, a first in school history. In total, the Gamecocks won 64 matches from 2017 to 2019.
  • Consistency is the name of the game, and South Carolina has certainly been one of the most consistent programs in the country for decades. Currently, the Gamecocks have made the NCAA Tournament 25 seasons in a row. Overall, South Carolina has competed in 29 of the 38 all-time NCAA Tournaments, advancing to the quarterfinals three times (1982, 2009, 2019) and the round of 16 nine times (1982, 1983, 1990, 1995, 1999, 2009, 2017, 2018, 2019). Carolina has also finished the season ranked among the top-25 a total of 25 times.

About Arkansas

The Razorbacks are off to an impressive start this season with just one loss, which happened in their last contest at Kentucky by a 4-1 margin. Arkansas’ 10-0 start included a win over then-No. 9 Vanderbilt on the road last weekend, and they have also beaten No. 30 Ole Miss, No. 36 Mississippi State and No. 41 Missouri from the SEC. The Razorbacks have non-conference wins over No. 43 Kansas State, No. 45 Kansas, Memphis, Oral Roberts, SMU and Wichita State. Laura Rijkers boasts the team’s top singles record this spring with an 8-0 mark, and Morgan Cross has eight wins as well. Cross and Indianna Spink have the best doubles record on the squad with a 6-3 slate. Arkansas is led by head coach Courtney Steinbock who is now in her third season at the helm after previously serving as the head coach at Houston for four seasons.

The Arkansas Series

South Carolina enjoys a sizable advantage in the all-time series with Arkansas, leading by a 26-8 margin and 24-8 since it joined the SEC for the 1992 season. The last time the two teams met was in 2019 in Fayetteville, and the Gamecocks came away with a 4-0 victory. The Gamecocks are 12-3 against the Razorbacks in Columbia, having not lost a match at home in the series since 2008. South Carolina has won four of the past five matchups and seven of the past 10.

>> Full Arkansas Series Results

About Missouri

Missouri has played more dual matches to this point than any other team in the SEC thanks to a number of doubleheaders this season. The Tigers earned a pair of wins against Central Arkansas in October and have also earned double dip sweeps over Murray State, Southeast Missouri State, UT Martin, Omaha and Illinois State. MU also dropped both ends of a doubleheader versus No. 22 Oklahoma State. The Tigers’ lone win in SEC play came at the expense of No. 36 Mississippi State. Marta Oliveira leads MU in singles wins with 10, while Gabrielle Goldin and Serena Nash have the most wins of any doubles team with seven. Missouri is under the direction of coach Chris Wootton who has been serving as the interim head coach since April 2020 following the resignation of Colt Gaston.

The Missouri Series

South Carolina and Missouri’s history began when the Tigers joined the SEC for the 2013 season and all eight contests have belonged to the Gamecocks. The two teams actually squared off twice during the regular season in 2013, once in the ITA Kickoff Weekend in Ann Arbor, Mich., and then again on the Tigers’ home courts. South Carolina is 3-0 against the Tigers in Columbia, S.C., and last beat Missouri 4-0 in 2019 in Columbia, Mo.

>> Full Missouri Series Results

In the Rankings

South Carolina (4-9, 1-5 SEC)

  • Team: 39th
  • Silvia Chinellato: 20th (D)
  • Megan Davies: 30th (S), 29th (D)
  • Mia Horvit: 34th (S), 29th (D)
  • Emma Shelton: 93rd (S), 20th (D)

Arkansas (10-1, 4-1 SEC)

  • Team: 20th
  • Lauren Alter: 28th (D)
  • Tatum Rice: 28th (D)

Missouri (13-7, 1-4 SEC)

  • Team: 41st
  • No ranked singles players or doubles teams

For more information on South Carolina women’s tennis, check out the team on GamecocksOnline and on social media: