Sept. 29, 2005
Hoosier ClassicBloomington, Indiana â€¢ Outdoor Varsity Tennis Courts â€¢ Indiana UniversitySeptember 30-October 2, 2005
Riviera/ITA Women's All-American ChampionshipsPacific Palisades, CA â€¢ Riviera Tennis ClubLos Angeles, CA â€¢ Los Angeles Tennis Center â€¢ UCLA (prequalifying)October 1-2 (prequalifying); October 4-5 (qualifying); October 6-9 (main draw)
THOMPSONS OFF TO ALL-AMERICANS WHILE REST OF IRISH HEAD TO HOOSIER CLASSIC: Junior twins Catrina Thompson (Las Vegas, Nev./Bishop Gorman H.S.) and Christian Thompson (Las Vegas, Nev./Bishop Gorman H.S.) will head to the first grand slam of the season, while the rest of the University of Notre Dame women’s teannis team will travel to the Hoosier Classic at Indiana University this weekend. Christian Thompson will begin play in the prequalifying singles draw on Saturday, while her sister will start in the qualifying singles bracket on Tuesday, and they will team up — as the #2-ranked pair in college tennis — for main draw doubles play beginning next Thursday, Oct. 6. Meanwhile, the rest of the Irish will be in action from Friday through Sunday at the Outdoor Varsity Tennis Courts in Bloomington, Ind.
HOOSIER CLASSIC FORMAT: The Hoosier Classic will take place at the Outdoor and Indoor Varsity Tennis Courts on the campus of Indiana University from Friday through Sunday. Six teams will be participating: Indiana, Kansas, Kansas State, LSU, Murray State, and Notre Dame. Action will begin at 10 a.m. (EST) on Friday. The tournament will feature five eight-player draws in singles, a 16-team doubles draw, and other round-robin matches.
IRISH DRAWS: Sophomore Brook Buck (Yukon, Okla./Oklahoma Christian School), who at 54th is the highest-ranked singles player in the tournament, will begin play in the “A” flight in singles by facing Marina Chiarelli of LSU. In the “B” flight, senior Kristina Stastny (St. Louis, Mo./St. Joseph’s Academy) will immediately get a shot at a nationally-ranked player when she takes on 95th-ranked Tamar Kvaratskhelia of Kansas State. Also in that draw, freshman Katie Potts (Brookfield, Wis./Divine Savior Holy Angels H.S.) will make her collegiate debut against Kansas’ Ksenia Bukina. In the “C” flight, senior captain Lauren Connelly (Oklahoma City, Okla./Bishop McGuinness H.S.) has Indiana’s Brianna Wiliams first, while rookie Kelcy Tefft (Enid, Okla./Chisholm H.S.) will face Tiffany Tucker of LSU. Senior Kelly Nelson (St. Petersburg, Fla./Shorecrest Preparatory School) will play Lauren Hommell of Kansas in the first round of the “D” flight, while sophomore Bailey Louderback (South Bend, Ind./Penn H.S.) will play Tami McQueen of Murray State in round robin action. In doubles, the 60th-ranked duo of Buck and Tefft will have Skoda and Brown from Kansas to begin. Connelly and Stastny, who earned a ranked win last weekend, will face the Lask sisters from Murray State, and Nelson and Potts will take on Avdeeva and Bukina of Kansas.
ND IN THE HOOSIER CLASSIC: This will be the second year in a row and fourth time overall that Notre Dame has played in a fall tournament at Indiana University. Last season, the Indiana Invitational — played in November — featured a hidden dual format. The Irish went 11-7 in singles and 5-4 in doubles, as sophomore Brook Buck (Yukon, Okla./Oklahoma Christian School) earned a pair of ranked upsets, while senior senior Kristina Stastny (St. Louis, Mo./St. Joseph’s Academy) notched her first career win over a ranked foe. ND also played in the 1989 Hoosier Conseco Classic and the 1999 Indiana Invitational.
RANKED PLAYERS IN THE HOOSIER CLASSIC: The Hoosier Classic will feature four nationally-ranked singles players and three ranked teams in doubles. In singles, Irish sophomore Brook Buck (Yukon, Okla./Oklahoma Christian School) leads the way at 54th, while Sarah Batty of Indiana is 82nd, her teammate Dora Vastag is 90th, and Kansas State’s Tamar Kvaratskhelia (who is in the “B” flight) is 95th. Batty and Laura McGaffigan are 19th in doubles, while Buck and freshman Kelcy Tefft (Enid, Okla./Chisholm H.S.) are tied for 60th, along with LSU’s Tiffany Tucker and Lauren Seaman.
RIVIERA/ITA ALL-AMERICAN CHAMPIONSHIPS FORMAT & HISTORY: The Riviera/ITA Women’s All-American Championships, the first of three legs of the collegiate grand slam, will take place from Oct. 1-9 in the greater Los Angeles area. The Oct. 6-9 main draw (32 singles, 16 doubles) is preceded by two sets of qualifying tournaments. The 64-player, 32 doubles team prequalifying tournament is Oct. 1-2 at UCLA and four players and doubles teams will advance from there to the Oct. 4-5 64-player qualifying tournament at Riviera (where eight players and four doubles teams will advance to the main draw). The premier hard court event of the fall collegiate season, the Riviera/ITA Women’s All-American Championships feature the top players in NCAA Division I tennis. The tournament dates back to 1983 when Georgia’s Lisa Spain won the inaugural title. In 1999 the University of San Diego’s Zuzana Lesenarova made history at the Riviera when she won her record fifth national collegiate singles title. In 2003 California’s Raquel Kops-Jones become the first African American woman to win a national collegiate singles title at the NCAA Division I level. Stanford boasts the most singles and doubles champions at this event with a total of eight, and Texas is not far behind with six. Past participants include current and recent top-100 professionals Lisa Raymond, Jill Craybas, Marissa Irvin and Laura Granville. Northwestern’s Audra Cohen captured the 2004 singles title and Florida’s Whitney Benik and Lolita Frangulyan took home the doubles crown. The famous Riviera Tennis Club has played host to this event since 1988 (it also hosted an intercollegiate women’s championship from 1986-88).
IRISH DRAWS: Junior Christian Thompson (Las Vegas, Nev./Bishop Gorman H.S.) will begin singles action in prequalifying on Saturday, facing the No. 12 seed, 120th-ranked Emily Kirchem of Colorado State, at 9 a.m. (PDT). A win would send her into a second-round match later that day against either Rice’s Kimberley Patenaude or 125th-ranked Natalie Braverman from Pepperdine. Thompson would then need to win one match on Sunday to advance to qualifying. That begins on Tuesday, and junior Catrina Thompson (Las Vegas, Nev./Bishop Gorman H.S.), ranked 27th, will definitely be participating. The draw for that will be posted on Monday. The main draws will be determined on Wednesday, and the Thompsons will be in that in doubles.
ND IN THE RIVIERA/ITA ALL-AMERICAN CHAMPIONSHIPS: Notre Dame will be represented in a main draw of the Riviera/ITA All-American Championships for the third straight year and the 12th time in the last 15 years. Top finishes for Irish players include current assistant coach Michelle Dasso reaching the singles quarterfinals in 2000, Wendy Crabtree and Lisa Tholen advancing to the doubles semis in 1993, and current juniors Catrina Thompson (Las Vegas, Nev./Bishop Gorman H.S.) and Christian Thompson (Las Vegas, Nev./Bishop Gorman H.S.) falling in the doubles final a year ago. See pdf for complete results of the Irish in the All-American Championships main draws.
IRISH HEAD COACH: Jay Louderback is in his 17th season at Notre Dame with a 283-147 (.659) record and his 26th year as a collegiate coach with a 487-325 (.600) mark. He ranks fifth among active NCAA Division I coaches in career victories. Louderback’s Irish have finished in the national top 30 in each of the last 13 seasons and have won 12 conference titles. Since the preseason of the 1992-93 season, Louderback’s teams have been in the national top 30 in 202 of 204 sets of ITA rankings. After taking over a program looking for its first NCAA tournament appearance, Louderback has helped Notre Dame to the NCAAs 12 times in the last 13 years (which only 10 other schools have done), including five appearances in the round of 16 and a 1996 quarterfinal finish. Louderback, a four-time Midwest Region coach of the year, has been honored as his conference’s top coach on eight occasions, including five times in 10 years in the BIG EAST. In his time at Notre Dame, Louderback’s players have earned All-America honors 15 times, won four national ITA awards, and earned 20 invitations to the NCAA Singles Championship and 12 to the NCAA doubles tournament. His players have dominated the University awards during Louderback’s tenure, leading all sports in both Byron V. Kanaley awards (six) and Francis Patrick O’Connor awards (six). His family was honored with the United States Tennis Association (USTA) Tennis Family of the Year Award for 2002. The Arkansas City, Kan., native, and 1976 graduate of Wichita State arrived at Notre Dame prior to the 1989-90 season after coaching for seven years at his alma mater and three years (men and women) at Iowa State.
TWO SINGLES PLAYERS, A PAIR OF DOUBLES TEAMS EARN PRESEASON NATIONAL RANKINGS: Junior All-America twins Catrina Thompson (Las Vegas, Nev./Bishop Gorman H.S.) and Christian Thompson (Las Vegas, Nev./Bishop Gorman H.S.) were listed #2 in doubles to lead the Notre Dame contingent represented in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) preseason national singles and doubles rankings, released earlier this month. Catrina Thompson, at 27th, and sophomore Brook Buck (Yukon, Okla./Oklahoma Christian School), at 54th, both earned career-best rankings in singles, while Buck and freshman Kelcy Tefft (Enid, Okla./Chisholm H.S.) — formerly the #1-ranked doubles team in juniors action — were 60th in doubles. Notre Dame is one of just nine schools (along with California, Florida, Georgia, Northwestern, Pepperdine, USC, Stanford, and TCU) to feature both two ranked doubles teams and two of the top 55 players in singles. The Irish have multiple players among the top 55 in the nation for the first time since the first set of spring rankings in 1998-99, when current assistant coach Michelle Dasso was eighth, Becky Varnum was 47th, and Jennifer Hall came in 54th. The Thompsons, who became the first ND team ever to be ranked #1 last spring, are behind only another team of juniors, Caroline Basu of Germany and Shadisha Robinson, the University of Georgia team that ended last season ranked #1 and with a 25-3 record.
IRISH WIN THREE CONSOLATION TITLES IN MARYLAND INVITATIONAL: A trio of Notre Dame seniors got the 2005-06 season underway last weekend, combining to bring home a trio of consolation championships in the Maryland Invitational. Lauren Connelly (Oklahoma City, Okla./Bishop McGuinness H.S.) and Kristina Stastny (St. Louis, Mo./St. Joseph’s Academy) won the “A’ flight backdraw in doubles, while Stastny also ruled the “A” flight consoles in singles, and Kelly Nelson (St. Petersburg, Fla./Shorecrest Preparatory School) returned to action for the first time in nearly two years and won the backdraw of the “B” flight.
CURRENT IRISH IN FALL ACTION: See pdf for the records of current Irish players in fall play:
STREAKS: The following streaks are active heading into this weekend:
– Lauren Connelly has won five consecutive three-set matches [last loss: 3/12/04 vs. BYU’s Sofia Holden 7-6, 2-6, 6-2]
– Brook Buck has won three consecutive fall singles matches [last loss: 10/24/04 vs. Northwestern’s Cristelle Grier 6-4, 6-1]
– Catrina Thompson has won 25 consecutive matches when taking the opening set [last loss: 3/27/04 vs. Wake Forest’s Katie Martzolf 6-7 (6-8), 7-6 (7-4), 1-0 (11-9)]
– Brook Buck has won 20 consecutive matches when taking the opening set (21-1 career record) [only loss: 9/19/04 vs. Denver’s Jenny Trettin 1-6, 6-3, 6-1]
– Christian Thompson has won all seven of her career singles matches against BIG EAST Conference opponents
– Catrina Thompson has won seven consecutive singles matches indoors [last loss: 2/18/05 vs. Duke’s Katie Blaszak 6-1, 6-7, 6-2]
– Catrina Thompson has won five consecutive singles matches in the Eck Tennis Pavilion [last loss: 2/18/05 vs. Duke’s Katie Blaszak 6-1, 6-7, 6-2]
– Lauren Connelly has won six consecutive singles matches against BIG EAST Conference players (8-1 career record) [only loss: 4/12/03 vs. Miami’s Sara Robbins 6-4, 5-7, 1-0 (10-4)]
– Kristina Stastny has won nine consecutive doubles matches indoors [last loss: 1/23/05 vs. Vanderbilt’s Ferrell/Taylor 8-0]
– Kristina Stastny has won nine consecutive doubles matches at home [last loss: 1/23/05 vs. Vanderbilt’s Ferrell/Taylor 8-0]
IRISH TO FACE SEVEN TOP-25 TEAMS: Nine teams that finished the 2004-05 campaign in the top 20 of the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) national rankings – including seven that reached the final 16 of the NCAA Championship – will highlight the 2005-06 schedule. In all, 19 of the 23 teams on Notre Dame’s schedule ended last year ranked among the top 55 in the nation, while 16 earned bids to the NCAAs. Among the top challenges on the Irish slate will be matches with USC (finished 7th, NCAA quarterfinals, Oct. 14, home, exhibition), Wake Forest (26th, second round, Feb. 11, away), North Carolina (11th, quarterfinals, Feb. 12, away), Tennessee (18th, second round, Feb. 18, home), Harvard (16th, round of 16, Feb. 19, home), Brigham Young (22nd, second round, Feb. 25, home), Duke (17th, second round, March 15, Orlando, Fla.), Texas (3rd, NCAA runner-up, March 20, away), Vanderbilt (8th, round of 16, March 29, away), Northwestern (5th, round of 16, April 5, home), and Tulane (15th, round of 16, April 15, away).
ND-USC TO CONTINUE “THE BATTLE BEFORE THE WAR”: On Friday, Oct. 14, Notre Dame and USC will meet in both men’s and women’s tennis in exhibition action the day before the schools do battle in football in Notre Dame Stadium. It will be the fourth consecutive time the squads have done this at Notre Dame the day before the football matchup.
WE ARE FAMILY: Notre Dame women’s tennis has long featured members of the same family on its teams. For the fourth consecutive season, Notre Dame will have a set of sisters on its roster: junior twins Catrina Thompson (Las Vegas, Nev./Bishop Gorman H.S.) and Christian Thompson (Las Vegas, Nev./Bishop Gorman H.S.). They last year became the first set of Irish sisters — and first twins of either sex — to both become All-Americans. The previous three seasons had featured two pairs of sisters on each Irish roster, but that has changed with the graduation of Maggie Donohue in 2003 and Sarah Jane Connelly last spring. Another family connection was added last season, as head coach Jay Louderback’s daughter, Bailey Louderback (South Bend, Ind./Penn H.S.), joined the team. He became the 11th Notre Dame coach — just the second in a women’s sport (along with softball’s Brian Boulac) — to have coached his son or daughter with the Irish.
CHANGES TO THE ITA RANKINGS: The Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) recently announced some changes to its national rankings for the 2005-06 season: (1) It will use one set of points for wins and also a tighter set of points, with less gaps. This set of points will be the same set that has been used for the season’s first computer rankings in the past; (2) There will be bonus points awarded for road wins; (3) The rankings that are run at the time of NCAA Championship selections will be run twice and the second run of the rankings will be the published ranking; (4) There will be expanded, unpublished rankings (and values for opponents): 76-125 for team, 126-175 for singles, and 61-90 for doubles; (5) The first computer rankings (for team) will take place 2 weeks earlier on March 8; (6) The singles and doubles rankings from Fall results will go back to being a computer ranking; it had been done by committee vote the past three years.
KEEPING UP WITH NOTRE DAME TENNIS: For the fastest results of Notre Dame tennis matches, call the Notre Dame sports hotline at (574) 631-3000 and choose #8. The hotline provides schedule and results information for varsity sports and serves as a supplement to the game recaps and weekly releases provided on the official athletic website at www.und.com. The hotline is the first medium updated with the results of each Notre Dame tennis match. In addition, media members and fans may be added to the sports information e-mail release list by contacting Bo Rottenborn at Rottenborn.firstname.lastname@example.org, who also can provide any information about the Irish tennis program.