ND Women’s Tennis
Irish prepare for ITA Kickoff Weekend
Michael Ivey | Thursday, January 21, 2016
Notre Dame travels to the ITA Kickoff Weekend Tournament at Greenwood Tennis Center in Stillwater, Oklahoma, this weekend to continue early-season action.
The Irish play the home team, 12th-ranked Oklahoma State, on Saturday and then either 26th-ranked Northwestern or Arizona State on Sunday. Irish head coach Jay Louderback said he expects the competition at the upcoming tournament to be tough.
“Oklahoma State has a very strong singles lineup so we need to be ready to play great singles. I feel like our doubles combinations are very good so we will focus on our singles,” Louderback said.
The Irish got their spring season started Tuesday night with a dominating 7-0 win over Western Michigan at Eck Tennis Pavilion. The Irish won all matches in the event as junior Mary Closs, sophomore Allison Miller, senior Quinn Gleason, senior Julie Vrabel and sophomore Brooke Broda won their singles matches in straight-sets. Junior Monica Robinson won her match in three sets. The doubles teams of Broda/Miller, Closs/Fennelly and Gleason/Robinson picked up wins in the doubles competition for the Irish.
Louderback said he believes finishing the first match allows his team to focus on the future.
“I think getting the first match jitters out of the way will help us as we prepare for this upcoming weekend,” Louderback said. “I was very happy with our doubles, and the way we handled our service games. We didn’t lose our serve in any of the doubles, which is such a key in winning the doubles point.”
Oklahoma State comes into the tournament with a 3-0 record which includes wins over Adeline Christian, Oral Roberts and Wyoming. Northwestern’s last event was a dual-meet that included wins over players from 15th-ranked Alabama and No. 22 TCU. Arizona State enters the Kickoff Weekend after participating in their first spring meet of the season, the Palm Springs Invite, last Friday.
Louderback reiterated that the opponents his team faces this weekend are going to be prepared for the Irish, and his team needs to be prepared for them.
“All three teams are very good teams that don’t beat themselves so we have to look to be aggressive and finish points and not wait for them to miss.”