Julie Sabacinski is the lone Irish player to take to the court Thursday, getting the ITA Midwest Regional underway for Notre Dame in the qualifying singles draw.

Irish Set To Open Play At 2011 ITA Midwest Regional

Oct. 19, 2011

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The University of Notre Dame women’s tennis team is set to begin play at the 2011 ITA Midwest Regionals, which gets underway Thursday at Ohio State’s Varsity Tennis Center in Columbus, Ohio. The event spans Thursday through Tuesday (Oct. 20-25) with the qualifying draw for singles getting play underway on Thursday.

Sophomore Julie Sabacinski (Plantation, Fla.) represents the lone Irish player to take to the court on Thursday, entering the singles qualifying draw as the second-ranked player in the bracket. After receiving an automatic bye into the round of ¬¬32, Sabacinski gets the winner of the opening round match between Alexa Pitt of Toledo and Carrine Bjerrehus of Cleveland State. This match is tentatively scheduled for first serve around 4:00 p.m. (ET).

If Sabacinski is able to put together two victories in the qualifying bracket, the sophomore will earn one of eight qualifying spots within the singles main draw, which begins play Saturday. While Sabacinski hopes to earn a bid into the main draw, her teammates Kristy Frilling (Sidney, Ohio), Shannon Mathews (Birmingham, Mich.), Chrissie McGaffigan (Davenport, Iowa), Jennifer Kellner (Smithtown, N.Y.), Britney Sanders (Ontario, Calif.) and Katherine White (Columbus, Ga.) have already earned a berth into the bracket.

Sophomore JoHanna Manningham (Mishawaka, Ind.) joins the fold in doubles action, as she will compete with one of the four Irish teams in the main doubles draw, which begins with two rounds of play on Friday.

Last season at the event, Frilling went on to claim the Midwest Regional title after defeating Michigan’s Denise Muresan in straight sets, 6-2, 7-6 (7-2) in the championship match. Two Irish doubles teams advanced into the quarterfinals of the bracket, as Frilling and Mathews as well as Sanders and the graduated Kristen Rafael (’11) each recorded two victories.

Participating schools include Akron, Bowling Green, Cleveland State, DePaul, Detroit Mercy, Eastern Illinois, Eastern Michigan, Illinois, Illinois State, IPFW, IUPUI, Marquette, Michigan State, Michigan, Northern Illinois, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Toledo, Valparaiso, Western Michigan, Wisconsin-Green Bay, Wisconsin and Youngstown State.

For updated draws and updates throughout the Midwest Regional you can visit ohiostatebuckeyes.com/ot/tennis-2011-ita-midwest.html. For complete recaps of the Irish at the event continue to check back with und.com daily.