COLLEGE STATION -- The Texas A&M women’s tennis team takes on No. 2 Baylor in a battle of conference unbeatens Wednesday in Waco. First serve is at 6 p.m. at the Baylor Tennis Center.
“We still have not hit on all cylinders on every court in the same match, but I know we have the talent to beat anybody,” A&M coach Bobby Kleinecke said. “Our biggest goal going into this match is to compete on every court. If we do that, we have an excellent chance.”
A&M is 10-5, including 4-0 in the Big 12 Conference after posting consecutive shutouts against both Nebraska and Iowa State over the weekend.
Freshmen Christi Liles (Largo, Fla.) and Morgan Frank (Oldsmar, Fla.) lead the Aggies in singles victories with 13 and 11 respectively in dual matches. In addition, they are tied for the team’s longest winning streak with five.
In doubles, Frank and Stephanie Davidson (Fair Oaks Ranch, Texas) post a team-best 11-2 mark.
A&M has dropped only one singles match in Big 12 action and enters the Baylor match with an overall 23-1 singles record in conference action. In addition, the Aggies have won the doubles point in all four league matches.
The three-time defending Big 12 champion Lady Bears are 19-2 overall and 5-0 in the Big 12. Both of Baylor’s losses came against the No. 1-ranked team at the time, a 4-2 loss to Stanford at the ITA National Indoor Championships on Feb. 2, and a 5-2 setback to Northwestern on March 26 in Waco. The loss to the Wildcats snapped Baylor’s 15-match winning streak, but the Lady Bears quickly got back into the win column with a 7-0 victory against Colorado followed by a 5-2 win against Missouri over the weekend.
“Baylor has had a great season and is the obvious favorite, but anything can happen against a conference team,” Kleinecke said. “We are going into the match as the underdog, but sometimes that is an easier role.”
A&M holds a 20-13 lead in the all-time series against Baylor since 1980. The Lady Bears, however, have won the last six meetings and 11 of the last 13, including a 6-1 victory against the Aggies in the second round of the 2007 NCAA Championships in Waco in the teams’ most recent match-up.
A&M's most recent victory against the Bears was in 2004, as the Aggies posted a 6-1 decision in Waco.
The Baylor match is the first of a three-match road swing for the Aggies, who enter the stretch with a 5-1 record at away contests. A&M is at Missouri on Friday and at Colorado on Sunday before returning home April 11 to play host to Kansas State.
“Everything here on out is conference, and every team is attempting to pick up speed and gain some steam in attempts of winning a conference title and get a better seed in the NCAA tournament,” Kleinecke said. “Everything is in our hands. We just have to go out and take care of business.”