The Observer is a student-run, daily print & online newspaper serving Notre Dame, Saint Mary's & Holy Cross. Learn about us.


ND Women’s Tennis

Irish prepare to face Wake Forest in ACC Tournament

| Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Sofia CrimaVaroli
Senior Page Freeman serves the ball in a match against Syracuse on April 14. The Irish won 4-2 in Notre Dame, Indiana.

On Thursday morning, the Notre Dame women’s tennis team will begin ACC tournament action against Wake Forest in Cary, North Carolina.

The matchup with the No. 9 seed Demon Deacons could be a fortuitous one for the Irish. Notre Dame faced off against then-No. 25 Wake Forest earlier in the year and came away with a convincing 7-0 victory. The triumph in South Bend marked the only conference game the Irish swept all spring.

The Irish will also enter with the advantage in the momentum department. Notre Dame picked up a pair of wins over the weekend, dispatching Syracuse and Boston College at home. Wake Forest, on the other hand, lost their last conference outing 6-1 to No. 9 Virginia. The Deacons then picked up a win outside of ACC play against North Carolina A&T, however.

One interesting storyline to keep an eye on is how both teams play at the neutral venue in Cary. Both Wake Forest and Notre Dame have built their strong records on excellent play at home. But their results away from each team’s respective standard confines have been less than stellar. 

The Irish are 3-6 away from South Bend, as opposed to 12-3 at Eck Tennis Pavillion. The Demon Deacons are 4-8 outside of Winston-Salem, which starkly contrasts a 12-4 home mark. While Cary is certainly closer to Winston-Salem than South Bend, both teams will be outside of familiar territory. Potentially of note in that department for Notre Dame is the teams’ fall performance at the ITA All-American championships. Four Irish players competed in the event which was held at Cary Tennis Park.

The winner of the Notre Dame-Wake Forest showdown will then square off against top-seeded North Carolina. The Tar Heels are arguably the hardest matchup in NCAA women’s tennis, currently ranked No. 1 in the nation. North Carolina is yet to lose a match all season, steamrolling through both their non-conference and ACC regular season slate without issue. Said slate included prior matchups against both Wake Forest and Notre Dame, which the Tar Heels won 4-0 and 7-0 respectively. Those matches make up two of the squad’s nine sweeps so far in 2023. A standard bearer in the sport, North Carolina has advanced to four consecutive national final fours.

Expect Fiona Crawley to provide the star power for the Tar Heels. The junior currently ranks as the No. 1 singles player in the nation. She also teams up with Carson Tanguilig to form the No. 11 ranked doubles pairing in the nation. Individually, Crawley is a dominant 36-1 on the year.

Notre Dame women’s tennis will be back in action on Thursday morning at Cary Tennis Park. Their first-round contest is slated for a 10 a.m. start.

Tags: , , ,

About J.J. Post

J.J. Post is a junior in Fisher Hall. Hailing from Mountainside, New Jersey, he's currently working his way towards being the nation's foremost expert on college soccer. Whether via the button below or his overly active Twitter (@JayJayPost), feel free to reach out and talk about Notre Dame soccer, football, basketball, volleyball, baseball or softball. Or any other Notre Dame sport you can think of. Odds are he watches it as well.

Contact J.J.