Nov. 15, 2013
By Harry Endicott
OSU Media Relations
The 2013 fall season was the most successful in recent years for the Oklahoma State women’s tennis team, with three Cowgirls, including two freshmen, recording nine or more wins.
“I think that we’ve progressed as a whole because we’ve found a lot more depth this year. I think that strength at the top of our lineup is something we haven’t had,” Cowgirl tennis coach Chris Young said. “I think that Kanyapat (Narattana) and Megan (McCray) both established themselves as the top of the line as far as our players go, so I think that will only add to the strength of our lineup. Those girls have proven they can play with anybody.”
Cowgirl senior Kanyapat Narattana was dominant in tournament appearances this fall, going 10-5 on the year. Narattana also provided the highlight of the fall season when she knocked off No. 47 Hermon Brhane of Oklahoma in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association Central Region Championship final to take the regional singles title and become the first Cowgirl in school history to qualify for the ITA National Indoor Championships. At National Indoors, the senior defeated the highest ranked opponent of her collegiate career in 26th-ranked Nadia Ravita of Kentucky in the round of 32. Narattana advanced to the tournament’s round of 16 where she stole six games from the top-ranked player in the nation, USC’s Sabrina Santamaria, but was outlasted, 6-3, 6-3. The loss wrapped up an impressive fall season that saw Narattana defeat four of six ranked opponents. Narattana finished the fall strong, having won nine of her last ten matches.
Freshman Megan McCray also had a strong performance in her first collegiate fall season, notching an 11-4 record in singles competition and a 6-2 mark against ranked opponents. At the Mizzou Invitational in Kansas City, Mo., only her second collegiate event, McCray won three matches to take the tournament singles title. The freshman Cowgirl followed up the win with a run to the quarterfinals at the ITA Regional Championships, although she was knocked off by the eventual runner-up Hermon Brhane of Oklahoma in a three-set battle. McCray finished her 2013 tournament season at the United States Tennis Association Clay Court Classic in Orlando, Fla., where she upended three opponents, including No. 46 Daneika Borthwick of Florida State, to advance as far as the semifinals.
Carla Tur Mari also impressed in her first tournament season as a Cowgirl. Tur Mari went 9-7 in singles matches, with six of her wins coming in straight sets. Tur Mari’s biggest win of the fall came at the Duke Invitational against No. 78 Marianne Jodoin of Duke in the consolation third place bracket. The freshman defeated Jodoin in a tight three-set match, 7-5, 4-6, 7-6(6).
Freshman Morgan McCray grabbed her first collegiate victory at the Mizzou Invitational when she knocked off Nebraska’s Katerina Matysova, 6-3, 6-0, in her first match as a Cowgirl. McCray finished the fall with a 2-3 record in singles.
Narattana and Tur Mari were slotted at No. 47 in the ITA preseason doubles rankings to begin the season. The Cowgirl duo recorded three wins at the Mizzou Invitational, including an 8-5 triumph over the 32nd-ranked tandem of Missouri’s Elisha Gabb and Cierra Gaytan-Leach, to take the tournament’s doubles championship. Narattana and Tur Mari also advanced to the quarterfinals at the USTA Clay Court Classic.
In other doubles action, Karyn Guttormsen and Maria Alvarez teamed up to go 6-3 on the fall. Freshmen Megan McCray and Morgan McCray joined forces at the Mizzou Invitational to take two of three matches.
“We want to continue to build on what we did last year, making and advancing in the NCAA tournament and being competitive in the Big 12 Conference,” Young said. “Every year now, we want to compete for the Big 12 title, make the NCAA tournament and look to advance once we get there, so that’s what our expectations are. The team is definitely going to be more talented this season than before, and hopefully that will produce more results.”