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ND Women’s Tennis

Notre Dame looks to snap losing streak

| Friday, April 15, 2016

Looking to shake off a three-match losing streak, Notre Dame is set for the final weekend of the regular season.

The Irish will participate in two crucial conference matches as they take on Virginia Tech at home Friday afternoon at the Courtney Tennis Center and then travel to Charlottesville, Virginia to face Virginia on Sunday morning at the Snyder Tennis Complex.

The Irish (10-11, 4-8 ACC) are coming off of a tough weekend where they dropped two straight 4-3 home decisions to conference opponents Clemson and No. 16 Georgia Tech. During Friday’s matchup, the Irish were able to claim two victories in the singles competition. Sophomore Brooke Broda won her match 6-1, 6-3 on court No. 4. and on court No. 6, freshman Rachel Chong emerged victorious 6-1, 6-2. From there, though, it was all Clemson (10-7, 8-4 ACC). Irish sophomore Allison Miller lost her match 6-2, 6-2 on court No. 2, while on court No. 5, junior Jane Fennelly came up short in a 7-6(8), 6-4 decision. On court No. 1, senior Quinn Gleason was defeated 6-2, 7-6(7). The other Irish singles loss was junior Mary Closs, who won the first set 6-3 before being bested in the last two sets 6-4, 7-5 on court No. 3.

Irish sophomore Brooke Broda prepares for a backhand during Notre Dame’s 6-1 win over Indiana at Eck Tennis Pavilion on Feb. 20.Caitlyn Jordan | The Observer
Irish sophomore Brooke Broda prepares for a backhand during Notre Dame’s 6-1 win over Indiana at Eck Tennis Pavilion on Feb. 20.

In the doubles competition, the team of Gleason and Fennelly won 6-4 on court No. 1. The teams of senior Julie Vrabel and Closs came out of their match with a 6-4 victory on court No. 2. On court No. 3, Broda and Miller were tied 6-6 before the match was discontinued.

On Sunday, the Irish split decisions with the Yellow Jackets (15-6, 10-2 ACC) during the singles competition. After losing her first set 6-2, Broda won her match by winning the final two sets 7-5, 1-0(7) on court No. 4. Miller also earned a come-from-behind victory. — after losing her first set 6-1, the Norcross, Georgia native emerged victorious on court No. 2 by winning the final two sets 6-3, 6-1. On court No. 1, Gleason won her first set 6-2 before being bested 6-3 in the second set. The score of the third and deciding set was 1-0(6) in favor of Gleason.

Closs, Fennelly, and Chong did not have the same success as their teammates, however. Closs lost her match in straight sets 6-3, 7-5 on court No. 3. Fennelly was met with the same fate on court No. 5, losing 6-0, 6-4. Chong lost a close first set 7-6(0) before being bested in the second set 6-1 on court No. 6.

In the doubles competition, Broda and Miller emerged victorious in their match, 6-3, while the teams of Gleason and Fennelly and Closs and Vrabel were both bested by scores of 6-3 on courts No. 1 and 2, respectively.

Irish head coach Jay Louderback said his team was close to winning each of their last two games but fell just short. He said he also liked how they responded in practice this weekend, and if his players keep it up, they will have a good chance of winning their final two regular season matches.

“We have had a lot of tight 4-3 matches and have been on the wrong end of the score lately,” Louderback said. “I have been so impressed with our team and how they have approached each practice focused and with maximum effort. I feel like our energy in our matches has been very good and, if we continue to put forth that effort and energy, it will pay off in our final weekend of matches leading up the ACC tournament.”

Entering the weekend’s matchups, Louderback said his team feels good about their chances in both matches and will be comfortable playing on its home court on Friday. He also said his team will be ready for the quick turnaround on Sunday.

“We are getting comfortable with the playing at home on Friday and a Sunday match on the road,” Louderback said.

These will be the Irish’s last two matches before next week’s ACC Tournament at the Cary Tennis Center in Cary, North Carolina. The five-day tournament begins next Wednesday.

Friday’s match against the Hokies (14-7, 7-5 ACC) is scheduled to start at 3:30 p.m. while Sunday’s match with the Cavaliers (12-9, 7-5 ACC) is set at 10 a.m.

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