Gamecocks First to Earn SEC Player of the Week Three Straight Times

April 11, 2013


With Elixane Lechemia winning SEC Player of the Week on Wednesday, the Gamecocks became the first school since the league began awarding weekly honors for women's tennis in 2000 to snag the honor three consecutive weeks. Below is a look at what each of South Carolina's winners did to earn SEC Player of the Week.

DOMINIKA KANAKOVA • 5-9 • JR-2L • CZECH REPUBLIC
Dominika Kanakova posted an undefeated record at No. 1 doubles for the Gamecocks playing alongside senior Jaklin Alawi and went 1-1 playing No. 4 singles versus Auburn and Alabama. Kanakova and Alawi clinched the doubles point against the Tigers with a win against the nation's then-No. 54-ranked duo and Kanakova picked up Carolina's third point in singles with a straight set win to help the Gamecocks upset the Tigers. Against the Crimson Tide, Kanakova and Alawi helped South Carolina win the doubles point by upsetting the nation's then-No. 6 duo. Kanakova narrowly lost her singles contest, falling 6-4 in the third. The doubles win marked the 20th of the season for Alawi and Kanakova, at the time giving them the most wins by a Carolina tandem since the 2007-08 season. It was also the highest ranked win for a South Carolina doubles team since 2010.


SEC Player of the Week
March 27, 2013

KATERINA POPOVA • 5-6 • JR-2L • RUSSIA
Katerina Popova helped the Gamecocks defeat Arkansas and LSU on the road on the same weekend for the first time since 2007. Along with Josefin Andersson, the Gamecocks' No. 2 doubles tandem clinched the point versus Arkansas, the 14th time the Gamecocks won doubles in 18 matches to that point. She picked up her second win against a ranked opponent this spring in defeating then-No. 97 Claudine Paulson of Arkansas and won in straight sets at No. 2 singles when the Gamecocks upended LSU 5-1. South Carolina and LSU did not play doubles. The junior from Moscow, Russia, became the team leader in singles wins that weekend with an 18-8 record. She won all three of her singles contests in helping the Gamecocks win three of four SEC matches to get back to 4-5 in the conference.


SEC Player of the Week
April 3, 2013

ELIXANE LECHEMIA • 5-9 • SO-HS • FRANCE
Elixane Lechemia posted an undefeated weekend in singles and doubles to help extend the Gamecocks' SEC unbeaten streak to four matches, their best since the 2010 season. She clinched the Gamecocks' 4-3 win over Mississippi State with the team score tied 3-all after losing the first set to her opponent playing No. 2 singles, the highest she has played this year in the lineup. She broke Alexandra Perper of MSU at 5-all in the third and held in the next game for the 7-5 victory. Along with partner Ximena Siles Luna, Lechemia clinched the doubles point versus Ole Miss on court three despite facing a 5-2 deficit. Lechemia held serve at love both times she served during the Gamecocks' come-from-behind doubles win versus the Rebels. She then defeated the first ranked player of her career in beating then-No. 82 Mai El Kamash on court three by scores of 6-1, 6-2 to give Carolina its first point in singles and second of the match.


SEC Player of the Week
April 10, 2013