Senior Catrina Thompson.

No. 2 Notre Dame Women's Tennis Opens BIG EAST Championship With 4-0 Victory Over UConn

April 20, 2007

TAMPA, Fla. – The top-seeded and No. 2 ranked Notre Dame women’s tennis team opened play in the BIG EAST Conference Championship on Friday morning with a convincing 4-0 victory over ninth-seeded UConn at the USF Varsity Tennis Courts. The Irish, who have reached the title match in all 11 years of league membership and captured seven championships, will take on fourth-seeded Marquette Saturday at noon in the semifinals. Notre Dame shutout the Golden Eagles earlier this month, 7-0.

Notre Dame (24-2) barely broke a sweat in its victory over the Huskies (11-10). The Irish did not drop a set and captured 91 of the 96 games that were completed. Notre Dame lost just one game in doubles and then got three “double-bagel” victories in singles. The other matches were abandoned, even though the Irish held 6-0, 5-1 leads in two of those matches (No. 3 and No. 4).

Senior All-American twins Catrina Thompson (Las Vegas, NV) and Christian Thompson (Las Vegas, NV) were first off the court in doubles, recording an 8-1 rout over Christine Burek and Elizabeth Dibbs at No. 1. The Irish duo is now 26-8 on the season and 18-5 in dual matches (all in the top spot of the lineup). Catrina and Christian earned the 103rd and 102nd career doubles victory of their respective careers. Catrina ranks fifth in Notre Dame career history, while Christian moved into sole possession of sixth. The Thompsons improved to 98-38 overall and 55-25 in dual action for their career.

Junior Brook Buck (Yukon, OK) and sophomore Kelcy Tefft (Enid, OK) returned to the court together for the first time since March 16. Tefft played alongside freshman Kali Krisik (Arkansas City, KS) while Buck recovered from a stress fracture. Buck and Tefft blanked Alison Campitiello and Kelley LoRusso, 8-0, at No. 2. The tandem improved to 22-5 overall and 14-2 in dual matches. Buck picked up her 52nd career dual-match doubles victory, good for 14th on the all-time Irish list. Buck and Tefft now stand 56-11 for their career and 38-6 in dual play. The 38 wins in dual action are the second most ever by a single Notre Dame team (passing Michelle Dasso and Becky Varnum, 1999-01).

Freshman Cosmina Ciobanu (Brea, CA) and Krisik led 7-0 in their match against Breann Cheung and Jessica Porter at No. 3 when the match was halted.

The Irish sealed the match with “double-bagel” victories at No. 1, No. 6 and No. 5. Catrina Thompson was the first Notre Dame player of the court following her 6-0, 6-0 rout of Burek at No. 1. Thompson improved to 24-9 overall and 19-6 in dual action. She now stands 97-46 for her career, including 67-31 in dual play. She not only moved into a tie with Wendy Crabtree (1993-96) for seventh all-time in career wins, but Thompson also moved into sole possession of sixth all-time in career dual-match victories.

Krisik picked up her first ever BIG EAST Championship victory. The freshman showed no signs of inexperience with her 6-0, 6-0 triumph over Dibbs at No. 6. Krisik improves to 16-5 overall and 9-1 in dual matches, including 7-1 in the No. 6 position.

Ciobanu clinched the match for Notre Dame with a 6-0, 6-0 victory over Alison Campitiello at No. 5. She extended her winning streak to 23 matches and remains the only Notre Dame player (one of two freshman nationwide ranked among the top 50) undefeated in dual action. Ciobanu now stands 33-4 overall and 23-0 in dual matches, both currently rank as the best in single-season school history. The victory almost moved her into a five-way tie for fifth on the single-season victory total. Ciobanu also leads Notre Dame with seven match clinching wins this season.

Notre Dame held commanding leads in the remaining matches. Christian Thompson led Kelley LoRusso at No. 2, 6-0, 4-2, while Colleen Rielley (Overland Park, KS) and Tefft had 6-0, 5-1 leads over Jessica Porter and Cheung, respectively.

1. Catrina Thompson (ND) def. Christine Burek (UCONN); 6-0, 6-0
2. Christian Thompson (ND) led Kelley LoRusso (UCONN); 6-0, 4-2
3. Colleen Rielley (ND) led Jessica Porter (UCONN); 6-0, 5-1
4. Kelcy Tefft (ND) led Breann Cheung (UCONN); 6-0, 5-1
*5. Cosmina Ciobanu (ND) def. Alison Campitiello (UCONN); 6-0, 6-0
6. Kali Krisik (ND) def. Elizabeth Dribbs (UCONN); 6-0, 6-0
Order of Finish: 1,6,5 * indicates clinching point

1. Thompson/Thompson (ND) def. Burek/Dibbs (UCONN); 8-1
*2. Buck/Tefft (ND) def. Campitiello/LoRusso (UCONN); 8-0
3. Ciobanu/Kali Krisik led Cheung/Porter (UCONN); 7-0
Order of Finish: 1,2 * indicates clinching point

— ND —