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Gleason, Robinson advance to consolation semifinals

| Tuesday, October 13, 2015

The Irish look to rebound from the ITA All-American Championship at next week’s ITA Midwest Regional Championships in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Irish doubles team of senior Quinn Gleason and junior Monica Robinson entered the ITA All-American Championship at the Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, Calif. ranked No. 10 in the country, earning the duo a first round round bye. In the second round, Gleason and Robinson faced No. 15 senior Whitney Kay and junior Haley Carter of the University of North Carolina. The Tar Heels doubles team pulled away early to win, 8-4. However, the Irish team rebounded Friday with an 8-5 win over Arkansas’s No. 11 senior Yuliya Lysa and junior Shannon Hudson to advance to the consolation semifinal.

Coach Jay Louderback, who enters his 25th season this season, was proud of his two players but said he saw a missed opportunity.

“They played well,” Louderback said. “But [they] had to pull out of the doubles consolation bracket because of an injury to Monica.

“If we had gotten more matches in against ranked opponents it would have been good for us.”

Attention now turns to Notre Dame’s trip to Ann Arbor next week. Michigan plays host to the ITA Midwest Regional Championships from Oct. 22 to Oct. 27 at the Varsity Tennis Center. The tournament will serve as a qualifying event for next month’s USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships in Flushing, New York.

While the draws have not been set, six Irish players are scheduled to participate, with a seventh undecided due to an injury.

The six confirmed Notre Dame participants are Gleason, Robinson, junior Mary Closs, sophomores Brooke Broda and Allie Miller and freshman Rachel Chong.

Louderback said the Fall season is the ideal time for teams to work out kinks and fine tune for the Spring season, and the ITA Midwest Regional Championships are especially good for this purpose. He cited the size of the tournament as a potential benefit.

“For the six singles, it’s a big draw, where we could end up playing anyone,” Louderback said. “We are all in the same draw which means some of our kids can end playing some highly ranked competition.

“It is a good indication to where we are right now.”

The veteran coach is excited by the latest editions to Notre Dame women’s tennis, including Chong. Louderback said he sees potential in his roster that will hopefully be realized in time for the beginning of the Spring season.

“It’s still early, but for the Fall we are hoping to have our kids work and develop on skills that the may not have yet.

“Also we hope to use the Fall to determine our lineup for the Spring.”

Louderback and the Irish return to the court at the ITA Midwest Regional Championships on Oct. 22 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The tournament will be played through Oct. 27.

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