Niedermayerova Downed at NCAA Championships

Petra Niedermayerova

May 25, 2011

PALO ALTO, Calif. – In a battle between a veteran postseason participant and a decorated newcomer, Kansas State freshman phenom Petra Niedermayerova fell to the experienced senior Anouk Tigu of Arkansas 6-4, 6-4 in the first round of the NCAA Women’s Tennis Singles Championships at the Taube Tennis Center.

Entering Wednesday evening’s match, Niedermayerova owned the second-most wins by a freshman in school history and was tied for fourth in school history for overall wins in a season with her 24-9 record in her rookie campaign. On the flip side, Tigu owned a career mark of 83-38 (.686) and was making her second career appearance in the NCAA Singles Championships. She was also ranked No. 33 in the May 2 Campbell/ITA national singles rankings, while Niedermayerova checked in at No. 50.

The first round match, originally scheduled for a 6:30 p.m. (CT) start, did not begin until 8:50 p.m., due to a two-hour rain delay earlier in the day. Niedermayerova did not seem affected by the delayed start, as she held a 3-2 advantage in the first set. Tigu was able to recover and break Niedermayerova’s serve in the seventh game to hold a 4-3 lead. Tigu used this boost in momentum to take four of the final five games and win the opening set, 6-4.

In the second set, both players were unable to hold serve early but Niedermayerova again built a 3-2 advantage. She was able to increase the lead to 4-3, but Tigu held her serve for the first time in the set and knotted the proceedings at 4. The Razorback was able to break Niedermayerova’s serve for the third straight time in the set and capture a 5-4 lead. Tigu swept through the tenth game to earn the win with a 6-4 decision in the second set.

Niedermayerova was the fourth player in school history to reach the NCAA Championship field in singles action and the first since Alena Jecminkova in the 2002 season.

Niedermayerova ends the season with a 24-10 overall record, which includes a 9-2 mark at number one singles in the Big 12 to finish as the league’s champion. The native of Brno, Czech Republic, finished her debut season in Manhattan with a number of honors in her trophy case including: Big 12 Player of the Year, Big 12 Freshman of the Year, the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Central Region Rookie of the Year and the ITA Central Region Player to Watch.

She is the second student-athlete in Big 12 women’s tennis history to earn both Big 12 Player of the Year and Big 12 Freshman of the Year honors in the same season, joining Baylor’s Zuzana Zemenova from Baylor in the 2005 campaign. Niedermayerova was also K-State’s 15th student-athlete named to the All-Big 12 singles team and the first since the 2008 season. She was the only freshman to earn the distinction this season.

Also included among her honors, Niedermayerova was named Big 12 Player of the Week on March 29, after she notched three wins over ranked foes in an eight-day span. Niedermayerova achieved a ranking in the Campbell/ITA national singles rankings six times this season, including four straight weeks from April 12-May 2, which included her current ranking of No. 50. She also tallied her first citation of any kind during the 35th Annual Milwaukee Tennis Classic on Sept. 19. Regarded as one of the longest running and top collegiate fall tournaments, she received the Mulcahy Sportsmanship Award at the conclusion of the fall event.

2011 NCAA Singles Championships
May 25, 2011
Palo Alto, Calif. — Taube Tennis Center
Final Result – First Round

(33) Anouk Tigu (ARK) vs. (50) Petra Niedermayerova (KSU), 6-4, 6-4