Notre Dame to play in tournament
Observer Sports Staff | Thursday, January 21, 2016
Notre Dame continues its early spring season action in the ITA Kickoff Weekend looking for a couple big wins in a national spotlight.
The two-day competition is comprised of 15 four-team brackets, and it will be hosted all around the country, as the number one seed in each bracket hosts all four games that will be played within its respective bracket.
The 37th-ranked Irish have been placed with sixth-ranked Illinois, 26th-ranked Northwestern and 29th-ranked Tulsa. Notre Dame will play highest-seeded Illinois with Northwestern facing Tulsa on Friday, while on Saturday the winners and losers will vie for first and third place, respectively.
The winner of this bracket will be invited, along with the other victors, to play in the 2016 ITA National Men’s Indoor Championship hosted by the University of Virginia from Feb. 12-15.
The Irish have competed in the ITA Kickoff Weekend for several years, and last year the squad hosted the four-team bracket in South Bend. The Irish were upset by Columbia in the championship, 4-2, denying the team a shot to compete at the National Men’s Indoor Championship.
Although they face the favored home team in the first round, this year the Irish have plenty of reasons to be optimistic.
The Irish started their spring campaign with a strong performance last Saturday, defeating Michigan State, 6-1, and Detroit, 6-1, at Eck Tennis Pavilion.
The Irish are bolstered by a wealth of experience up and down the lineup — including a five-member senior class, led by All-American and 2015 NCAA semi-finalist Quentin Monaghan. Additionally, seniors Alex Lawson, Eric Schnurrenberger, Kenneth Sabacinski and Nicolas Montoya, and juniors Josh Hagar and Eddy Covalschi also return as significant contributors for the Irish from a year ago.
The Irish and Illini are set to face off Friday at 6 p.m. at Atkins Tennis Center in Champaign, Illinois.