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Sophomores Maddie Johnson and Lea Kozulic
Courtesy: Sean Palchick

Drake Visits No. 54 Wichita State With Share Of MVC Title On The Line

Courtesy: Drake Athletics
         
Release: April 16, 2014
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A share of the Missouri Valley Conference regular season title will be on the line this Saturday (April 19) when the Drake women’s tennis team visits No. 54 Wichita State for a 10:00 a.m. match. A victory by the Bulldogs will give Drake a share of its first regular season league title since 2005 and a possible bye into the semifinals at next week’s MVC Championship in Normal, Ill. A Wichita State win and the Shockers claim the outright league title.

REBOL SELECTED AS MVC PLAYER OF THE WEEK
The Missouri Valley Conference announced that Drake senior Klavdija Rebol (Kranj, Slovenia) was recognized as the MVC Women’s Tennis Player of the Week. The award marks the fifth weekly honor for a Bulldog this season and the third in Rebol’s career.

Rebol closed out her Drake home career in style this past weekend registering a perfect 4-0 combined singles/doubles ledger to lead the Bulldogs to a pair of victories at the Roger Knapp Tennis Center.

In the Bulldogs’ 7-0 win over Bradley last Saturday (April 12), Rebol teamed with junior Nell Boyd (Arlington Heights, Ill.) to capture the doubles point with an 8-4 decision at the No. 2 spot. In singles, she bested Adele Henke at the No. 1 position, 6-3, 6-1.  

In Drake’s 6-1 triumph past Illinois State on Sunday (April 13), Rebol again paired with Boyd to clinch the doubles tally with an 8-6 victory on the No. 2 court. The triumph was the 75th in her career, moving her past Gabby Demos (2008-12) and into second place all-time (since 1990-91) at Drake in doubles victories.

Rebol closed out her career at the Roger Knapp Tennis Center grinding out a 6-3, 1-6, 10-5 victory at the No. 1 singles position over Phyllis Tigges.

BULLDOGS CLOSE HOME CAMPAIGN BESTING ILLINOIS STATE, 6-1
Drake sent out senior Klavdija Rebol a winner in her final home match as the Bulldogs notched a 6-1 victory past Illinois State last Sunday (April 13) at the Roger Knapp Tennis Center.

Drake opened doubles play collecting an 8-4 triumph from sophomores Mariel Ante (Riverside, Calif.) and Jordan Eggleston (LaQuinta, Calif.) on court No. 3.

Rebol and Nell Boyd followed suit clinching the doubles point for the Bulldogs at the No. 2 position, 8-6.

Opening singles with her seventh consecutive singles victory, 6-2, 6-2, over Ilves at No. 5 was Eggleston.

Extending the Bulldogs’ advantage to 3-0 on the No. 3 court was sophomore Maddie Johnson (Onalaska, Wis.), who bested Carolina Abello, 6-3, 6-2, to post her team-leading 29th singles win of the season.

Recording the match-clinching point with a 6-4, 6-3 triumph past Madeliene Baillon at the No. 4 slot was Boyd.

Closing out the victory total for Drake with wins at the Nos. 1 and 6 positions, respectively, was Rebol and sophomore Lea Kozulic (Varazdin, Croatia).

Kozulic netted a 6-0, 6-4 triumph versus Gabriella Phillips at No. 5.

In her final career home singles tilt, Rebol rallied to edge Phyllis Tigges on the top court, 6-3, 1-6, 10-5.

DRAKE POSTS 7-0 WIN OVER BRADLEY
Drake improved to 3-1 in the Missouri Valley Conference on the strength of a 7-0 victory past Bradley last Saturday (April 12) at the Roger Knapp Tennis Center.

The Bulldogs opened the match earning decisions at all three doubles positions to garner the doubles tally and assume a lead they didn’t relinquish.

Registering the deciding point in doubles with an 8-4 triumph at the No. 2 position was the Bulldogs’ tandem of Klavdija Rebol and Nell Boyd.

Jordan Eggleston opened singles for Drake recording her 50th career singles win besting Carly Miles on court No. 5, 6-1, 6-0.

Lea Kozulic extended the Bulldogs’ advantage to 3-0 winning at the No. 6 slot, 6-0, 6-2.

Collecting the match-clinching point with her 50th career singles triumph at No. 3 was Maddie Johnson, 6-0, 6-2.

Drake also received victories at the Nos. 1, 2 and 4 positions, respectively, from Rebol, Mariel Ante and Boyd.

Rebol netted a 6-3, 6-1 triumph past Adele Henke at No. 1 before Boyd registered a 6-2, 6-2 victory over Sarah Rodefeld at No. 4.

After winning the initial set in her showdown at No. 2 versus Ariel Dechter, 6-1, Ante dropped the second frame, 6-3. In the deciding 10-point third-set tiebreaker, Ante rallied to net a 6-1, 3-6, 12-10 victory.

IN OUR LAST MEETING
Wichita State 4, Drake 3 (April 7, 2013)
DES MOINES, Iowa - The upset bid for Drake came up just short as Wichita State, narrowly escaped the Roger Knapp Tennis Center with a 4-3 decision over the Bulldogs.

The Shockers assumed the early momentum in the affair registering victories at the Nos. 2 and 3 doubles positions to secure the doubles tally and a 1-0 lead.

Wichita State pushed its advantage to 3-0 in singles with triumphs on the Nos. 1 and 3 courts.

Refusing to go down without a fight, the Bulldogs mounted a comeback that began with Maddie Johnson collecting a 6-1, 6-4 win at No. 4.

The momentum was short-lived as Carla Venticinque gave the Shockers the match-clinching tally with a 6-1, 6-4 victory at the No. 6 position versus Jordan Eggleston.

Drake closed the match with triumphs at the Nos. 2 and 5 slots courtesy of Evy Van Genechten and Nell Boyd to account for the final 4-3 margin. Van Genechten bested Lucia Kovalova at No. 2, 6-4, 4-6, 10-5, before Boyd garnered the victory at No. 5 after Satjaporn Mahajaroenkul retired in the second set.

DRAKE ODDS-N-ENDS
•    With its 14 wins this season, Drake has now collected at least 13 victories in each of the last four campaigns.
•    Senior Klavdija Rebol enters the weekend owning a 136-92 combined singles/doubles ledger over her four seasons at Drake. Her combined record since the 2006-07 campaign ranks second behind the 139 victories earned by Gabriela Demos (2008-12).
•    Rebol’s doubles triumph over Illinois State represented the 75th victory in her Drake career moving her past Demos for second all-time (since 1990-91) in program history. The win also established a new career high for doubles victories (23) for Rebol.
•    Sophomores Jordan Eggleston and Maddie Johnson each recorded their 50th career singles victories in the Bulldogs’ 7-0 win past Bradley.
•    Junior Nell Boyd and sophomores Jordan Eggleston and Maddie Johnson have each surpassed the 50-win plateau this season. The trio enters action this week with combined win totals of 57, 55 and 51, respectively.
•    Eggleston recorded her 50th career doubles triumph with an 8-6 victory at the No. 3 singles position against Evansville.
•    Five Bulldogs have surpassed the double-digit win plateau for victories in singles play this spring. Junior Nell Boyd leads the way with 16 wins, while sophomores Eggleston, Johnson, Mariel Ante and Lea Kozulic have posted 15, 15, 13 and 13 triumphs, respectively.
•    In doubles, Boyd paces the Drake attack with a team-best 15 doubles wins this spring, while also cracking the 10-victory plateau is Eggleston, Rebol and Johnson with 14, 13 and 10 triumphs, respectively.
•     Boyd leads the Bulldogs with a 59-12 combined singles/doubles ledger. She is followed by Eggleston (57-15), Johnson (52-15), Ante (47-24),  Rebol (33-23) and Kozulic (25-22).
•    Johnson owns a team-leading 29 singles victories this season to pace the Bulldogs. Boyd is one off her pace with 28 wins. Ante’s 26 triumphs have established a career high, while Johnson surpassed her 22 victories last season with a win over Missouri.
•    Ante, Boyd, Eggleston, Johnson and Kozulic have established career highs in singles wins this season.
•    Four Bulldogs have cracked the 20-win plateau in singles this year, led by 29, 28, 27 and 26 victories, respectively, from Johnson, Boyd, Eggleston and Ante.
•    Johnson and Boyd are both 9-1 in their last 10 singles contests.
•    Following its 6-1 triumph over Northern Iowa on March 30, Drake improved to 7-2 in Missouri Valley Conference openers since 2006.
•    Drake owns an 11-3 mark at the Roger Knapp Tennis Center since 2011 in league matches. Two of the Bulldogs’ three losses came at the hands of Wichita State, who has won its last 42 regular season conference tilts.
•    With its victory over Upper Iowa, Drake reached the double-digit win plateau for the fourth consecutive season.
•    Drake defeated what is believed to be its first Southeastern Conference opponent since the 1993 campaign with its 4-3 triumph at Missouri (March 16). On Feb. 12, 1993, the Bulldogs posted their last victory over an SEC squad, besting Arkansas, 7-2.
•    Drake garnered its first win over Missouri since April 21, 1989 with its 4-3 victory on March 16.
•    The Bulldogs’ win at Iowa State was their first over the Cyclones since Jan. 31, 2004, when Drake collected a 5-4 decision.
•    During its seven-match winning streak Drake owned a 49-9 combined singles/doubles ledger, including a 35-7 record in singles.
•    Boyd and Eggleston led the Bulldogs with 7-0 singles marks during the squad’s winning streak, while Ante, Lea Kozulic, Johnson and Rebol recorded 6-1, 6-1, 5-1 and 4-3 records, respectively.
•    Drake has garnered five MVC Player of the Week honors this spring. Johnson (Jan. 28 and March 11) has earned recognition twice, while Ante (March 4), Boyd (Feb. 25) and Rebol (April 15) have each won the award once.
•    The Bulldogs are 2-1 against teams from the Big Ten Conference this season. Drake suffered a 4-3 home setback against Iowa on March 5 after previously besting Nebraska, 5-2, Feb. 28 in Lincoln, Neb., and Wisconsin, 4-3, Feb. 23 at the Roger Knapp Tennis Center.
•    The Bulldogs’ 5-2 win at Nebraska was their first over the Huskers since a 4-2 triumph at the then Drake Tennis Center on Feb. 17, 1996.
•    The Bulldogs’ win over Nebraska is even more impressive considering the Huskers were the 2013 Big Ten Conference regular season champions and were ranked as high as No. 25 in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) national poll this season, after reaching the third round of the NCAA Championship a year ago.
•    The Bulldogs’ win versus Wisconsin represented their first victory past a Big Ten Conference foe since besting Minnesota in 2002, 4-3, while also marking Drake’s first-ever triumph over the Badgers.
•    With her triumphs versus Colorado State, Boyd surpassed her career high for combined wins (41) set during the 2011-12 campaign. She now stands with a team-best 59-12 record.
•    Rebol surpassed Manca Krizman (2009-12) for second place at Drake in victories (since the 2006-07 campaign) with her doubles triumph at Missouri. Her 136 wins are three shy of equaling Gabriela Demos’ (2008-12) 139 victories atop the list. She also moved past Demos against Illinois State for second all-time at Drake in career doubles triumphs (since 1990-91) with 75.
•    Boyd and Rebol are on pace to both crack the Drake top 10 in career singles victories as the duo enters the Wichita State match with 72 and 61 wins, respectively. Boyd is currently ranked seventh, five wins shy of surpassing Nikki Uelze and Meredith Lavelle for fifth place.
•    Johnson, Eggleston, Ante and Boyd are rated first, second, third and fifth, respectively, at Drake (since the 2007-08 campaign) in winning percentage in singles play.  The quartet owns .810 (51-12), .699 (51-22), .695 (41-18) and .655 (72-38) winning percentages, respectively. In doubles, Eggleston, Boyd, Rebol and Johnson highlight the top-four spots sporting .746 (53-18), .684 (65-30), .647 (75-41) and .644 (38-21) winning percentages.
•    Boyd was 16-1 in doubles matches this fall.
•    Drake finished 38-11 in doubles in the fall, with Boyd, Eggleston, Ante, Johnson and Rebol surpassing the 10-win plateau with 16, 16, 13, 13 and 10 victories, respectively.

DRAKE EARNS ITA RANKINGS FOR FIRST TIME SINCE 2002
On the strength of its 7-1 start to the 2014 campaign, Drake cracked into the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) national rankings checking in at No. 72 in the poll released on March 4. The ranking was the first for the Bulldogs since being rated 75th on Feb. 13, 2002.

DOUBLES PLAY PROPELS BULLDOGS
Drake has been sparked this season by its doubles play as the Bulldogs are 12-0 when winning the doubles tally and have won 71 percent of their matches. Sporting a 31-3 doubles mark this year, including a 15-2 record during the spring campaign, Nell Boyd directs Drake in doubles triumphs. She surpassed her career high for victories (21) set during her freshman season with a win over Wisconsin. Klavdija Rebol, Mariel Ante, Jordan Eggleston and Maddie Johnson also have surpassed their career-best marks in doubles this spring.

DRAKE RECOGNIZED IN ITA PRESEASON RANKINGS
Maddie Johnson garnered recognition for her efforts on the court this past fall cracking the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) preseason singles rankings checking in at No. 118. She was the lone Missouri Valley Conference representative in the women’s national rankings.

SCOUTING THE BULLDOGS
Drake returns seven letterwinners from a squad that posted a 13-10 ledger last spring, including a 5-2 second-place showing in the Missouri Valley Conference.

Jordan Eggleston led Drake with 47 combined singles/doubles victories, while the Bulldogs also garnered combined win totals of 37, 37, 36, 30, 26 and 11 from Nell Boyd, Maddie Johnson, Klavdija Rebol, Mariel Ante, Lea Kozulic and Amanda Dick.

Boyd and Eggleston each registered a team-best 24 singles victories a year ago, while Eggleston and Rebol posted 23 and 22 doubles triumphs, respectively.

HOME COOKING
The Bulldogs own a 37-11 record in the Roger Knapp Tennis Center since 2011 in dual matches.

DRAKE HEAD COACH SADHAF PERVEZ
Sadhaf Pervez, an assistant coach with eight years collegiate coaching experience, including the 2012-13 campaign at Princeton, is in her first year as head women’s tennis coach at Drake after being named to the position on July 9, 2013.

This past fall she helped guide the Bulldogs to 98 combined singles/doubles victories, including 60 in singles action.  Drake players captured 14 titles, including eight in singles and six in doubles competition, respectively.

Sophomores Mariel Ante and Maddie Johnson earned five championships apiece for Drake, while junior Nell Boyd and sophomore Jordan Eggleston each registered four titles.

In singles action, the Bulldogs were paced by 14, 13, 12 and 12 triumphs, respectively, from Johnson, Ante, Boyd and Eggleston.

In doubles, Eggleston and Boyd led Drake with 16 doubles wins, while adding 13, 13 and 10 victories, respectively, were Johnson, Ante and senior Klavdija Rebol.

Johnson captured the No. 5 singles crown at the Missouri Valley Conference Individuals en route to collecting a No. 118 national ranking in the 2014 Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) preseason rankings.  Johnson was the lone women’s tennis player in the MVC to be rated nationally.

Boyd and Eggleston earned the No. 2 doubles title at the MVC Individuals to become the first Drake women’s tennis doubles tandem to win a championship at the annual league championship since 2002.

Pervez came to Drake after spending the 2012-13 season as an assistant coach at Princeton.  She helped mentor three Tigers to All-Ivy League accolades this spring, including Lindsay Graff, who was tabbed a first-team All-Ivy selection in singles.

Freshman Amanda Muliawan captured the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Northeast Regional singles crown last fall under Pervez’s tutelage, becoming the first-ever Princeton women’s tennis player to do so and by virtue of the triumph earn a berth in the ITA National Indoor Championships.

Pervez also contributed to the signing of the nation’s No. 7 recruiting class as chosen by TennisRecruiting.net.

She previously served from 2005-11 as an assistant coach at her alma mater, Ohio State, as well as a one-year stint at Nebraska (2004-05).

During her tenure at Ohio State, she helped the Buckeyes reach the NCAA Tournament three times (2008, 2009 and 2010), including earning a 4-1 victory over DePaul in the first round of the 2010 NCAA Tournament.

The Buckeyes established a school record for victories as well as achieving a school-record No. 17 ITA ranking during the 2010 campaign.

During her playing career at Ohio State from 1999-2003, she accumulated 190 combined singles/double victories en route to earning first-team All-Big Ten accolades as a senior in 2003.

The Buckeyes qualified for the NCAA Tournament during each of her four seasons in Columbus and posted the school’s first-ever tournament victory, 5-3, over the University of Miami in 2000.

She is third and fifth, respectively, in Buckeye’ women’s tennis history in singles (99) and doubles (91) wins.

A native of Warren, New Jersey, Pervez graduated from The Ohio State University in 2004 with a bachelor’s degree in business marketing.

UP NEXT
The Bulldogs open the Missouri Valley Conference Championship on either April 25 or April 26 in Normal, Ill., against an opponent that has yet to be determined.

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