Tahlequah Daily Press

March 18, 2014

Jirickova earns first league accolade

NSU briefs

— Barbora Jirickova was named the MIAA Women’s Tennis Athlete of the Week, the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association announced Monday morning.

The junior from Jablonec, Czech Republic, posted a perfect 6-0 record this past week to lead Northeastern State to a 4-0 mark, which included a 6-3 road win over No. 42 Central Oklahoma and an 8-1 road win over No. 46 St. Edwards. The RiverHawks (9-4) also topped Washburn and Texas A&M-Kingsville on the road.

Jirickova was 3-0 in singles and lost just six games total, and her and sophomore Kristina Savchenkov posted three straight 8-3 doubles victories at the No. 2 position. The team triumph over the Bronchos snapped UCO’s 15-match home winning streak.

This is the first career weekly accolade for Jirickova and the second of the season for an NSU women’s tennis player. Savchenkov brought home MIAA Athlete of the Week honors exactly one month ago.

Women’s Tennis takes down top JUCO squad

TYLER, Texas — The No. 35-ranked Northeastern State women’s tennis team posted a 5-4 victory over Tyler Junior College Monday afternoon at the Murphy Tennis Complex.

The RiverHawks (10-4) won their fifth-straight match after starting the year 5-4. The Apache Ladies (14-4) are the No. 1-ranked team in the National Junior College Athletics Association (NJCAA). The loss for TJC was the first this season against a team that doesn’t compete in NCAA Division I. The only other losses have been to Stephen F. Austin, Louisiana Tech and Houston.

The home team got the first point of the day when Fausthyara Pietersz and Joanna Savva defeated senior Martina Bruzikova and freshman Valeriia Efimenko 8-0 at the top of the doubles lineup. Pietersz and Savva are the No. 1-ranked NJCAA doubles team in the nation.

Northeastern State responded with a pair of 8-4 victories on the final two courts to gain a critical 2-1 lead following doubles action.

First off were junior Barbora Jirickova and sophomore Kristina Savchenkov, who defeated Kylie Reynaud and Paige Murdock at the second position. Reynaud and Murdock are the No. 6-ranked tandem in the country. Senior Houda Bellamine and freshman Maria Lodge then topped Danielle Stillman and Adriana Garrett 8-4 on the third court.

Tyler Junior College flipped the score to 4-2 in favor of the home team after capturing the first three decisions in singles. Pietersz defeated Savchenkov 7-6 (7-4), 6-0 from the first position, Savva defeated Efimenko 6-3, 6-1 on the second court and De Wet topped Bellamine 6-1, 7-5 at the fourth spot. Pietersz (No. 2) and Savva (No. 5) are two of the five best singles players in the NJCAA, while De Wet is ranked No. 40 in the nation.

The comeback for the RiverHawks began on the sixth court, where sophomore Lucia Cerchlanova defeated Garrett 6-2, 6-4. Jirickova then tied the match at 4-4 when she defeated No. 45-ranked Kerry Weigand 6-4, 6-4 from the fifth flight.

The decisive match came at No. 3 singles, where Bruzikova defeated No. 29-ranked Nicki Johnson 6-3, 7-5.

Northeastern State will next be in action at 3 p.m. Friday against Northwest Missouri State in Tahlequah.