Cornett and Kaluder advance to main draw

FAYETTEVILLE – Senior Melissa Cornett and freshman Ela Kaluder kicked off the ITA Central Regional tournament off right for the University of Arkansas women’s tennis team as both players advanced to the main draw on Wednesday evening.

Both Cornett and Kaluder won the two required qualifying matches to give them the opportunity to compete in the 64-player main draw beginning Thursday morning. The advancing Lady Razorbacks puts Arkansas in the driver’s seat of the tournament by putting the most players in the 64-player main draw with six.

In the opening round, Cornett defeated Colorado’s Carla Pallares in straight sets 6-1, 7-5 while Kaluder bested Kansas State’s Maria Perevoshchikova, 6-2, 6-1.

In the second round, Cornett had a little more trouble against Tulsa’s Kinsey Grimes. Cornett cruised in the first set to a 6-1 win, but fell in the second to the same score. With the deciding third set being played as a super tiebreaker, Cornett edged Grimes 10-8.

Kaluder had less trouble in the second round as she blanked Boise State’s Alanah Carroll 6-0, 6-0 to improve to 11-1 this fall.

“Melissa and Ela fought through their matches with great energy today,” said Arkansas head coach Michael Hegarty. “Those two winning today puts us in great position tomorrow with six players in the main draw.”

In Thursday’s main draw, senior Vlatka Jovanovic is the tournament’s No. 3 seed. She opens with Oklahoma’s Gabrielle Baker.

Ninth seeded freshman Aurelija Miseviciute is slated to face Brigham Young’s Sofia Holden as ninth seeded sophomore Maryori Franco faces Rachel Sackmaster of Denver.

Main draw action begins Thursday morning and continues through the weekend. For more information concerning Arkanas women’s tennis or any other Lady’Back sport, please visit LADYBACKS.COM

Tennis Results:

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

ITA Central Regional Tournament

Qualifying Rounds

First Round:

Melissa Cornett (Arkansas) def. Carla Pallaress (Colorado) 6-1, 7-5

Ela Kaluder (Arkansas) def. Maria Perevoshchikova (Kansas State) 6-2, 6-1

Second Round

Melissa Cornett (Arkanas) def. Kinsey Grimes (Tulsa) 6-1, 1-6, 1-0(8)

Ela Kaluder (Arkansas) def. Alanah Carroll (Boise St.) 6-0, 6-0