May 10, 1997

Notre Dame Tennis Bows to Wisconsin in Midwest Regional Semifinals

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Notre Dame’s women’s tennis team finished its season with a 5-2 loss to Wisconsin in the semifinals of the NCAA Division I Women’s Tennis Midwest Regionals Saturday at Stanford University.

The Irish, ranked 19th, advanced to the semifinals by beating Illinois 5-3 on Friday in round one.

Notre Dame scored its two points in singles play, as Marisa Velasco and Tiffany Gates each won her match.

Wisconsin clinched its win in No. 3 doubles play, as Courtney Haskell and Kelley Olson dropped their match, 8-1.

Notre Dame finishes the year at 18-11. The Irish now have a 4-4 record in NCAA play since the team’s first appearance in 1993.

Wisconsin, which is ranked 21st, improves to 21-7 on the season, and advances to Sunday’s regional final against South Carolina at 1 p.m.

Wisconsin 5, Notre Dame 2

SinglesNo. 1 Melissa Zimpfer (W) def. Jennifer Hall (#38) (ND)    6-2, 6-1No. 2 Marisa Velasco (ND) def. Barbara Urbanska (#76) (W)  6-3, 6-4No. 3 Tiffany Gates (ND)  def. Colleen Lucey (W)           6-4, 5-7, 6-1No. 4 Tracy Zobrist (W)   def. Kelly Zalinski (ND)         6-4, 7-5No. 5 Andrea Nathan (W)   def. Kelley Olson (ND)           6-1, 6-3DoublesGates/Hall (ND)             vs. Lucey(#12)/ Zimpfer (W) DNSVelasco/Zalinski (ND)       vs. Nathan/Zobrist (W)      Susp. (W led 3-2)Courtney Haskell/Olson (ND) vs. Urbanska/Woods (W)      8-1

Wisconsin coach Patti Henderson: “Our team really wanted it. We lost a close match to them earlier in the year and we knew we could have turned it around. We really wanted to have a chance to play them again. We could have turned the match around the first time and we were ready for them again.”

Notre Dame coach Jay Louderback: “We won singles matches the first time that we didn’t win today. We needed to be three to three after singles. Tiffany Gates really played well today. She plays a way that drives other people crazy. That was a big factor for her today especially after two sets. We played well the last month and we are young. Without Erin Gowen out, we didn’t have any seniors playing. Our young kids got good experience this year.”