April 4, 2008
The Notre Dame women’s tennis team made it a perfect Big Ten road trip Friday evening with a decisive 6-1 win over Iowa at the Hawkeye Tennis and Recreation Complex. The Irish (15-7) lost just two sets in singles, both in tiebreakers, and won the doubles point for the ninth consecutive match.
The Irish put on a clinic in doubles, posting two 8-0 wins to quickly wrap up the doubles point. Kali Krisik and Katie Potts played one of their best matches of the season, dominating Lynne Poggensee-Wei and Kayla Berry to earn the shutout win. Potts and Krisik have won three of four matches together this season, but Friday marked their first shutout win as a team.
Not to be outdone, Colleen Rielley and Cosmina Ciobanu ran their record to 15-1 on the season and won their sixth in a row with a shutout win over Milicia Veselinovic and Kelcie Klockenga. The win for Notre Dame’s No. 2 team was also their first “bagel” of the season and improved their winning percentage to .938. That mark is the highest winning percentage for a doubles team over the course of a season in Notre Dame history with a minimum of 15 matches played.
The nation’s #1 team of Brook Buck and Kelcy Tefft found little trouble in their match against Jacqueline Lee and Alexis Dorr. The Irish veterans emerged with an 8-4 win that improved their mark to 29-5 on the year and 18-3 in dual play. With four regular season matches remaining along with Big East and NCAA tournament play, the pair has a chance to set the school record for most dual wins by a No. 1 team in a season. The current record is 24 set by former Notre Dame assistant and current Illinois head coach Michelle Dasso and Becky Varnum in 2001. Buck and Tefft also have a 7-1 record since becoming the nation’s top ranked team with the only loss coming in a tiebreaker.
The Irish had little trouble clinching the match in singles as they won ten of the twelve singles sets contested.
Ciobanu posted the initial Irish win at No.3 with a 6-1, 6-2 win over Dorr. The Irish sophomore, who is currently ranked #122 in the nation, won for the fifth time in six matches and improved to 21-15 on the year.
The rout continued when Krisik posted a 6-4, 6-1 win over Klockenga at No. 5. After squeezing out the first set that was decided by just one break of serve, the Notre Dame sophomore cruised in the second by taking control early in the set. Krisik’s 28 wins are six more than anyone on the team. She also has a 19-3 mark this spring in dual play and has won seven of her last eight matches.
Potts clinched the Notre Dame victory when she defeated Berry 6-1, 6-1 at the No. 6 position. The match featured some longer points, but the outcome was never in doubt as the Irish junior took control early in both sets. The win was the fourth in a row for Potts who owns a 17-8 mark on the year and a 10-7 record in dual play. She is also a perfect 4-0 when playing at the No. 6 position.
Rielley put on a solid performance at No. 4, emerging with a 6-2, 6-2 win over Poggensee-Wei. The Hawkeye proved to be a worthy opponent for Rielley, but the Irish sophomore was simply too much as she won in straight sets for the fifth time in eight matches. She also ran her overall record to 17-12, 11-9 this spring.
Tefft, playing the No. 1 spot for the fifteenth consecutive match, bested Lee 6-3, 6-2. Tefft is now 11-4 playing the top singles position with all but one of those wins coming in straight sets. The Notre Dame junior has also won seven of her last eight matches and is 22-7 on the year. Her win total is surpassed only by Krisik, and her 18 dual wins are just three shy of matching her total from last season.
The lone Hawkeye tally came from Veselinovic who prevented the shutout with a win over Buck in two tiebreak sets at No. 2. The Irish senior saw her team-best six match win streak halted. (Krisik and Potts now share the longest active streak on the team with four consecutive wins.). Buck was stung by tiebreakers again as she saw her record fall to 2-5 in tiebreak sets this season. Her record stands at 13-15 on the year.
Friday’s match against the Hawkeyes concludes the road slate for the Irish in 2008. Notre Dame, who finished with a 7-4 road record this season, will conclude the season with four home matches in eight days, beginning with Syracuse on Sunday afternoon. First serve against the Orange is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. or immediately following the men’s match against William & Mary. Both matches are scheduled to be played outdoors at the Courtney Tennis Center.