March 23, 2016
By Joanne Norell
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The University of Notre Dame will make the first of its three scheduled visits to North Carolina this weekend when they travel to take on NC State and North Carolina in continuing Atlantic Coast Conference action.
WHAT: Matches 16 & 17
WHO: No. 42 Notre Dame (9-6, 3-3 ACC) @ No. 43 NC State (9-5, 2-3 ACC) | No. 42 Notre Dame @. No. 4 North Carolina (17-2, 5-0 ACC)
WHEN: 5 p.m. ET, March 24 | 11 a.m. ET, March 26
WHERE: J.W. Isenhour Tennis Center (Raleigh, N.C.) | Cone-Kenfield Tennis Center (Chapel Hill, N.C.)
FOLLOW: Lives Stats vs. NC State | Live Stream vs. NC State | Live Stream vs. UNC
Scouting NC State
The Wolfpack enters Thursday’s matchup with a 9-5 record, with each of their losses coming against ranked opponents. NC State is 2-5 against opponents with a national ranking, with the two wins coming against then-No. 42 Clemson (Jan. 30) and then-No. 24 Syracuse (March 6). They are led by No. 63 Martina Frantova, who is 7-6 at No. 1 singles. Amanda Rebol boasts the best record for the Wolfpack with a 10-4 mark in dual matches this season.
Scouting North Carolina
The Tar Heels are 17-2 on the season and are so far undefeated in ACC play at 5-0. Earlier this season, North Carolina came in second at the ITA National Team Indoor Championship, and has not lost a match since February 20 at Michigan. The Tar Heels claim the nation’s top singles player in No. 1 Hayley Carter, while Whitney Kay (No. 29) and Jessie Aney (No. 53) also come in to the match ranked. They also boast the No. 1 doubles squad in Kay and Carter, while Aney and Kate Vialle come in at No. 65.
The Irish fell four spots in the latest Oracle/ITA team poll to No. 42 after a 4-3 loss to No. 29 Wake Forest on Friday. In the latest singles poll, senior Quinn Gleason dropped one spot in the rankings to No. 45 despite defeating No. 50 Kimmy Guerin of Wake Forest last week. Additionally, junior Monica Robinson dropped to No. 61, having posted a 10-5 record at the No. 2 spot this season. Gleason and Robinson rose seven spots to No. 33 in the doubles polls.
Sophomore Brooke Broda is turning in a fantastic season thus far, posting an 11-0 record this season in dual matches. Indeed, Broda – who missed last season with a shoulder injury – has lost just one match all season dating to fall tournament play, boasting a 17-1 record overall.
Last Time Out
The Irish fell to No. 29 Wake Forest last Friday in a 4-3 decision at the Eck Tennis Pavilion. The Irish won the doubles point, but the Demon Deacons came back in singles to win four straight to clinch the match. Quinn Gleason and Brooke Broda provided Notre Dame’s two singles wins.
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.