Feb. 19, 2016
By Joanne Norell
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The No. 32 University of Notre Dame women’s tennis team will cap its non-conference slate Saturday against Indiana, then jump into Atlantic Coast Conference play Sunday against Louisville at the Eck Tennis Pavilion.
WHAT: Matches 9 & 10
WHO: No. 32 Notre Dame (5-3, 1-0 ACC) vs. No. 59 Indiana (6-1); No. 32 Notre Dame vs. Louisville (6-2, 0-0 ACC)
WHEN: 11 a.m. ET February 20, 2016 | 2 p.m. ET February 21, 2016
WHERE: Eck Tennis Pavilion (Notre Dame, Ind.)
FOLLOW: | | Live Stream
The Hoosiers enter Saturday’s contest with a 6-1 record and are riding a four-match winning streak. Last time out, Indiana defeated No. 64 Tennessee, but the Irish will be just the second ranked opponent the Hoosiers have faced this season. Madison Appel is 5-2 for the Hoosiers atop the lineup, while Sarah McLean is 7-0 at the No. 3 slot. Notre Dame is 17-11 all-time against the Hoosiers, including 17-8 under head coach Jay Louderback. The Irish fell to the Hoosiers 4-3 last season, but are 12-1 in their last 13 meetings dating to 2002.
The Cardinals are 6-2 heading into this weekend and will face Pittsburgh on Friday before they meet the Irish. Notre Dame will be Louisville’s first ranked opponent. The Irish are 5-0 against the Cardinals in all-time meetings, including 4-0 under Louderback. Last season, No. 26 Notre Dame defeated No. 74 Louisville 4-3 on the road.
The Irish moved up one spot to No. 32 in this week’s Oracle/ITA Women’s Team Rankings. With no individual polls set to be released for another week, senior Quinn Gleason and junior Monica Robinson will remain at No. 15 in the national doubles rankings, with a 5-2 dual record and 6-3 mark overall. Gleason sits at No. 44 in the singles rankings, boasting a 5-1 record atop the Irish singles lineup and a 11-3 mark overall.
Last Time Out
The Irish got a mid-week win Wednesday when they defeated No. 47 Purdue 6-1 in West Lafayette. Notre Dame was dominant in doubles, winning 6-1 at the No. 1 slot, and 6-0 at No. 2 to claim the point. They went on to win five of six singles matches, including two three-set matches on Courts 1 and 2. With the win, the Irish moved to 2-1 against Big Ten opponents this season, with one Big Ten foe remaining on the schedule (Indiana).
ITA Rules Changes
This season, the NCAA with the support of the ITA, will utilize a no-ad scoring format for the NCAA Division I men’s and women’s tennis championships. If a game reaches deuce, the next point will win the game. Additionally, eight-game pro-sets will no longer be utilized in doubles matches, with teams playing one set to six, with a tiebreak at six-all. At the individual doubles championships, matches will consist of the best-of-three sets, with a match tiebreak in lieu of a third set. The rules changes are designed to improve the pace of play in championship matches.
Joanne Norell, athletics communications assistant at the University of Notre Dame, has been part of the Fighting Irish athletics communications team since 2014 and coordinates communications efforts for the Notre Dame women’s soccer, men’s tennis, women’s tennis and fencing programs. Norell is a 2011 graduate of Purdue University and earned her master’s degree from Georgetown University in 2013.