Gamecock Senior Faces Aeriel Ellis of Texas in Second Round Thursday
Gamecocks End 2012 Season With 16-9 Record
Gamecock Advance to Second Round in Durham, N.C.
Gamecocks and Horned Frogs Play at 10 a.m. in Durham, N.C., on Friday
South Carolina Heads to Durham, N.C., for First-Round Competition
E-mail Coach Petrovic at email@example.comKatarina M. Petrovic is in her ninth season with the South Carolina women's tennis team. Petrovic joined the Gamecock coaching staff in September 2004 after serving as the sports manager at the Michael-Ann Russell Community Center in North Miami Beach, Fla. After serving as assistant coach her first five seasons with the program, Petrovic was promoted to associate head coach in summer 2009. Petrovic served as the interim head coach beginning February 28, 2012, until the hiring of Kevin Epley on June 11, 2012, to replace legendary head coach Arlo Elkins. She is a longtime member of the Gamecock tennis family, being a four-year letterwinner for South Carolina from 1999 to 2002.
Petrovic has been the catalyst behind South Carolina's influx of talented players during her tenure. A tireless recruiter, Petrovic helped bring All-SEC performers Gira Schofield, Natasa Vuckovic, Ana Marija Zubori, Dijana Stojic, Anya Morgina and Jaklin Alawi to the school. Schofield earned all-conference accolades every year she competed at South Carolina, becoming the first player in school history to do so. A year later in 2010, Zubori became the second player to garner All-SEC accolades four straight years while becoming the first Gamecock in school history to achieve first-team All-SEC status more than once. Schofield also reached the NCAA Singles Championship four times and earned a season-ending national ranking four straight years, both school firsts. Zubori then ended her career with a national singles and doubles ranking four consecutive seasons, the first player in school history to achieve the feat. Vuckovic earned All-SEC honors three times from 2006 to 2008, and Stojic received second-team All-SEC accolades in 2010 and 2011. Morgina became South Carolina's fourth first-team All-SEC honoree in 2011 while also picking up Intercollegiate Tennis Association Carolina Region Player to Watch honors, making her just the second player in school history to receive the award. Morgina was an All-SEC Second Team member in 2012, as was Alawi.
Last year, Petrovic guided the Gamecocks to their 18th consecutive NCAA Tournament as the lone coach on staff for most of the season. After Elkins stepped away from his coach duties and handed the reins to Petrovic for the remainder of the season, she posted a 9-8 record while finishing 5-6 in the SEC with a national ranking of 31st. The Gamecocks went 16-9 overall and reached the second round of the NCAAs, the 16th time in the past 18 years they have won at least one round in the tournament. Morgina, Stojic and Alawi all earned national rankings at season's end to mark the second time in the past three years a trio of Gamecocks have appeared in the ITA's final poll for singles. Alawi and Stojic also garnered a top 50 ranking in doubles. Morgina qualified for the NCAA Singles Championship for the second straight year and nearly picked up All-America honors after losing in three sets in the second round.
For the 2009 season, Petrovic and Elkins helped their Gamecocks engineer an outstanding run to finish the season. Sitting at 8-7 overall and 1-3 in the SEC with a No. 40 national ranking, the team rebounded to end with a 6-5 record in SEC play and entered the NCAA Tournament at 14-10 and ranked 22nd. The Gamecocks upset the NCAA Tournament's No. 10 seed Tennessee in the second round in Knoxville, Tenn., to reach the championships in College Station, Texas. South Carolina then shut out Washington in the round of 16 to reach the quarterfinals. Against the national No. 2-seed Georgia Bulldogs in the quarters, the Gamecocks stole the doubles point but came up one victory short in singles to lose an epic 4-3 battle. It tied for the best postseason finish in school history. At a luncheon during the championships, Petrovic was honored as the ITA Southeast Region Assistant Coach of the Year for her role in helping South Carolina achieve the success it had last season. Petrovic became the first assistant coach in school history to receive the honor from the ITA.
A native of Valjevo, Serbia, Petrovic came to South Carolina in spring 1999 and made an immediate impact on the Gamecock tennis program. She was voted ITA Southeast Region Rookie of the Year and earned second-team All-SEC honors the same year. Petrovic began her career by winning nine of her first 10 matches en route to a final national ranking of 33rd. As a sophomore, Petrovic earned team MVP honors, was selected to the NCAA Singles Championship draw and reached an individual ITA national ranking of 13th, the highest-recorded individual ranking in school history. Petrovic's season-ending singles billing of No. 29 made her just the fifth Gamecock to finish among the top 30 in the nation and the first to do so since 1987. She remains the last player in school history to finish among the top 30 as well. Petrovic continued to lead the Gamecocks during her junior and senior seasons. She currently resides in 10th place on the school's all-time list for doubles victories with a 67-34 (.663) record and is 28th in singles wins with a 65-59 (.524) slate. Her combined record of 132-93 (.587) is tied for 18th all-time. While Petrovic enjoyed a great deal of success on the tennis court, she received academic accolades as a two-time selection to the SEC Academic Honor Roll.
Petrovic earned her degree in marketing and management from South Carolina in 2002. The former Katarina Markovski is married to Stevan Petrovic and resides in Columbia, S.C.
KATARINA PETROVIC PHOTO GALLERY