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There is no sophomore jinx as far as Mississippi State's Georgiana Patrasc is concerned.
Patrasc is putting together a solid second year with the Bulldogs and saw her ranking improve dramatically this week.
After knocking off No. 55 ranked Eve Repic of Tennessee 6-2, 6-2 on Sunday, Patrasc saw her standing move up 28 spots from No. 93 to No. 65.
Patrasc felt like she got off to a slow start this season for MSU coming off the winter break, but believes she is playing now.
"Slowly I got in a lot of hard work and I've got a couple of good wins under my belt," Patrasc said. "I have been able to hold onto my ranking which has been up and down the whole semester.
"It was a very good win (over Repic) and really helped a lot in my rankings. I jumped up in the rankings almost 30 seeds."
Patrasc jumped right into competition in the No. 2 singles position as a freshman with the Bulldogs.
Once Patrasc proved she could compete and even beat ranked competition, MSU women's tennis coach Daryl Greenan knew he needed to move her up to the top position.
"A little over half of her freshman season, she took over the No. 1 spot," Greenan said. "She quickly proved that she's capable of beating nationally ranked players. She has spent most of the time in the top position and shared some of that with Alexandra Perper, who is a senior. G (Patrasc) has shown the ability to step up against ranked players and her most recent win was her highest win."
Greenan said it's not unusual for a sophomore to make a significant jump as a career progresses.
Depending on the amount of talent, a player like Patrasc can excel quickly in the sport of tennis.
"It's not like football where they have to learn all of the plays, grow physically and progress," Greenan said. "Tennis players come in with pretty extensive international experience and they are sometimes ready to make that jump. She's done a good job."
Patrasc, who is a native of Romania, admits that it's not easy adjusting to the college life so far away from home.
She said the key is listening to coaches and not try to figure things out on her own.
"It's not like when you play on your own and try to do your own thing," Patrasc said. "College is different. You are here with the team and with coaches every time, so you have to do what they say and not what you want to do."
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