Feb. 3, 2000

FARMERS BRANCH, Texas — The Notre Dame women’s doubles teams of junior Michelle Dasso and sophomore Becky Varnum and freshman Katie Cunha and junior Kimberly Guy dropped first-round matches on Thursday at the Brookhaven Country Club at the Rolex National Intercollegiate Indoor Championships, the third leg of the Intercollegiate Tennis Association collegiate grand slam. Tenth-ranked Dasso and Varnum fell 6-3, 4-6, 6-1 to Cal’s Claire Curran and Anita Kurimay, while 15th-ranked Cunha and Guy lost 6-3, 6-4 to Arizona’s eighth-ranked and fourth-seeded Lindsay Blau and Michelle Gough.

In the consolation round, SMU’s Lindsay Bruce and Megan Russell eliminated Cunha and Guy 6-3, 5-7, 6-4. Dasso and Varnum lost 4-6, 6-3, 6-1 to Georgia’s third-seeded Marissa Catlin and Aarthi Venkatesan in the consolation Thursday night.

Dasso and Varnum claimed the Intercollegiate Tennis Association Midwest Region doubles title in the fall, while Cunha and Guy also earned a bid with their ITA national ranking of 15. Notre Dame and Stanford are the only schools with two doubles teams in the 16-team field. The Irish last had a doubles team in Rolex National Intercollegiate Indoor Championships back in 1995 when Wendy Crabtree and Holyn Lord lost to UCLA’s Jane and Stephanie Chi in the first round.

The Rolex National Intercollegiates feature a 32-player singles field and 16-team doubles field for men and women, including qualifiers from ITA Regional Championships held across the country during the fall, the Rolex National Small College champions, the winners of the first two legs of the 1999-2000 ITA Grand Slam (the T. Rowe Price National Clay Court and All-American Championships) and at-large and wild card selections made by the ITA National Tournament Committee. Overall, more than 5,000 players from nearly 600 schools participate annually in the ITA Regional and Rolex National Intercollegiate Championships.