Women’s tennis will begin its annual spring break road trip this Tuesday with a match against Marquette in Milwaukee, and continue the trip in Florida with a match against Florida International on Thursday, closing out against Florida Atlantic next Friday.
After starting off the season winning five of seven matches, the Lions (5-4) have now suffered two back-to-back losses at the hands of Kentucky and Maryland. The Maryland match, which took place this past Saturday, finished 4-3 after nearly four hours of resilient, back-and-forth tennis.
Despite the loss, the Light Blue mustered an encouraging performance, with solid wins coming from first-year Jennifer Kerr and senior captain Adi Milstein and a dominant showing from sophomore Ali Pollack, who lost only three games the entire match in a 6-1, 6-2 victory.
The Lions expect to rely on the sustained top-tier play of their core contributors while looking to revamp and re-energize the rest of their lineup. First-year Christie Wan, who has played first singles all season, will try and bounce back from two straight decisive losses, and junior captain Andrea Kevakian will look to regain her footing after faltering in a close match last week.
An important point of conversation all season has been the team’s middling performance in doubles. After the loss to Kentucky three weeks ago, head coach Ilene Weintraub, CC ’02, identified the team’s energy in doubles as a definite area of concern, claiming that the team had to come out with more energy at the beginning of matches. Following last week’s match against Maryland, Weintraub was encouraged by what she saw despite losing the doubles point.
“We added [...] a few more concepts to our doubles, and I was happy to see that they were effective, and the girls were buying into it,” Weintraub said. “Hopefully, we can keep building upon that and get the doubles point next match.”
Marquette (5-5) will enter Tuesday’s match coming off two straight victories against Milwaukee and Northern Illinois, both of which it won in sweeps. Marquette’s season thus far has been one of extreme highs and lows, with all of its matches being decided by at least three points, and five of its 10 matches finishing in sweeps.
Meanwhile, Florida International (6-1) has rattled off five straight wins against the likes of Marshall and North Florida. The Panthers’ match against Columbia will be their second of four during their stint in Miami next week, as they will play against Cleveland State on Tuesday.
Florida Atlantic (6-4) has also won three straight matches and will have the added benefit of playing the Lions on its home turf, in Boca Raton next Friday.
First serve of the women’s tennis spring break trip is set for 10 a.m. Tuesday against Marquette.