April 30, 2008
Notre Dame, Ind. – For the second consecutive year, Brook Buck and Kelcy Tefft have earned invitations to the NCAA Division I WomenÂ¡Â¦s Tennis Doubles Championship, it was announced Wednesday evening. Tefft will also participate in the Singles Championship for the first time in her career. It marks the 13th time in 16 years that a Notre Dame player has earned an invitation to both the singles and doubles championships. The feat has been accomplished by only four players previous to Tefft; Wendy Crabtree, Jennifer Hall, Michelle Dasso, and Catrina Thompson. The individual championships will take place May 21-26 at TulsaÂ¡Â¦s Michael D. Case Tennis center.
Buck and Tefft will be looking to improve upon last yearÂ¡Â¦s result when they bowed out to Frederica van Adrich and Ani Mijacika of Clemson. Regardless of how the pair concluded the season, Buck and Tefft are simply one of the most prolific doubles pairs in Irish tennis history. The duo won the ITA National Indoor Championship this past fall, becoming just the second Notre Dame pair to win a collegiate grand slam championship. (The other title came from Catrina and Christian Thompson in 2005 when they captured the ITA All-American Championships). Buck and Tefft also became the second ever Notre Dame duo to capture the #1 national ranking this past March. The pair held the ranking for six weeks before falling to #3 in the most recent ITA poll. They posted a 13-1 mark as the #1 team with the lone loss coming in a tiebreaker. Buck and Tefft will head into the doubles tournament as the No. 3 overall seed behind the teams of Riza Zalameda and Tracey Lin (UCLA) and Tinesta Rowe and Melanie Gloria (Fresno State), No.Â¡Â¦s 1 and 2 respectively. Here are a few more of the pairÂ¡Â¦s accomplishments:
They have posted a 94-19 career record, good for second all-time and just ten wins behind the Thompsons who played together for four years. Buck and Tefft are in their third year as partners.
The pair is 65-11 in their career in dual matches, just two wins shy of tying the school record held by the Thompsons.
In 2008, Buck and Tefft are 35-5, one win away from tying the Thompsons for the school record for most wins in a season.
The 24-3 dual mark is just one win away from tying Lauren Connelly and Kristina Stastny for most dual wins in a season. All wins have come at the No. 1 position, tying the school record for most wins at No. 1
Brook Buck is the career doubles wins school record holder with 126, Tefft is already tied for fifth with 106, and is just six wins away from moving into second with a whole year of eligibility remaining.
Tefft has backed her doubles play with stellar play on the No. 1 singles court this season. Since moving into the No. 1 place in February, Tefft is 14-5 and 21-5 overall in dual play. She has defeated six ranked foes this season and earned a career-high singles win with a victory over #13 Ellah Nze of Duke. She also earned a career-high singles ranking of #38 in mid-March. The Irish junior is on her way to becoming one of the most decorated all-around players in Notre Dame history. She is a threat to challenge Michelle DassoÂ¡Â¦s mark of 249 all time combined wins. With a 185-42 career mark, Tefft stands at ninth in all-time wins with a full season remaining. She also stands at 7th place on the all-time dual match wins list having already piled up 135 dual match wins. She will look to add on to her accolades when she takes part in her first career NCAA singles championship later this month.
The eight seeded teams in doubles have already assured themselves of being named ITA All-Americans in doubles, and they will be joined by the tournament’s quarterfinalists, as well as any squad finishing in the national top 10. This will be the first All-American honor for both Buck and Tefft.
This will be the 14th time in the last 16 years that Notre Dame has had at least one entry in both the NCAA singles and doubles tournaments. Since 1989 (a span of 20 years), Notre Dame competitors have garnered 23 invitations to the national singles tournament and 16 to the doubles event.
The singles championship will begin May 21 with opening-round play and will continue with one round per day. The doubles tournament starts the 22nd and also proceeds with one round each day. A full list of all qualifiers can be found on www.ncaasports.com.
Buck and Tefft will first lead Notre Dame in the NCAA Team Championship, which gets underway May 9. The Irish, ranked 22nd, will travel to Coral Gables, FL for early-round action, playing Florida International at 2:00 p.m. (ET) in the opening round. The first round winners will meet Saturday, May 10 in a match that begins at 11:00 a.m. (ET).