Feb. 20, 2000

MADISON, Wis. — The 17th-ranked Notre Dame women’s tennis team lost 5-2 to 13th-ranked USC late Saturday night in the consolation of the USTA/ITA National Women’s Team Indoor Championships in Madison, Wis. The Irish finish tied for seventh at the 16-team event with a 1-2 record after beating 12th-ranked William & Mary in the first round and losing to top-ranked Stanford in the quarterfinals. Notre Dame won the doubles point but then lost five of singles matches in falling to 6-3 on the season. The Irish return to action at 29th-ranked North Carolina on Sat., Feb. 26, at 1:00 p.m.

Notre Dame used wins at Nos. 1 and 2 doubles to take a 1-0 lead after doubles. The 33rd-ranked team of junior All-American Michelle Dasso and sophomore Becky Varnum finished 3-0 on the weekend with an 8-6 win over Tiffany Brymer and Kara Warkentin at No. 1 doubles. The 17th-ranked team of freshman Katie Cunha and junior Kimberly Guy beat Anita Loyola and Veronika Safarova 9-7 at No. 2 to clinch the point.

In singles, however, the Irish were done in by the experimental format that has been used at the tournament. The experimental dual match format consists of three eight-game pro-set doubles matches followed by six singles matches with a match tiebreaker (first to 10, win by two) to be played instead of a third set in singles. A team winning two doubles matches wins one point and wins two points for sweeping the doubles. If a match is tied 4-4 after singles, overtime is played – the same three doubles teams return to play match tiebreakers with the team that wins two of the three winning the match 5-4.

The Trojans won three singles matches in the match tiebreaker, including a 19-17 tiebreaker win by Warkentin over Varnum at No. 2 singles and 10-5 and 10-4 at Nos. 4 and 6 singles. Dasso won the only singles match for the Irish with a 7-6 (7-3), 7-6 (7-5) victory over 38th-ranked Jewel Peterson at No. 1 singles.

#13 USC 5, #17 NOTRE DAME 2


No. 1: #82 Michelle Dasso (ND) def. Jewel Peterson (USC) 7-6 (7-3), 7-6 (7-5)

No. 2: Kara Warkentin (USC) def. Becky Varnum (ND) 6-4, 3-6, 1-0 (19-17)

No. 3: Veronika Safarova (USC) def. Kelly Zalinski (ND) 6-1, 6-1

No. 4: #56 Jacqui Boyd (USC) def. Nina Vaughan (ND) 2-6, 6-4, 1-0 (10-5)

No. 5: #93 Anita Loyola (USC) def. Lindsay Green (ND) 7-5, 6-0

No. 6: Tiffany Brymer (USC) def. Kimberly Guy (ND) 4-6, 6-3, 1-0 (10-4)


No. 1: #33 Dasso/Varnum (ND) def. Brymer/Warkentin (USC) 8-6

No. 2: #17 Katie Cunha/Guy (ND) def. Loyola/Safarova (USC) 9-7

No. 3: Boyd/Peterson (USC) def. Green/Zalinski (ND), 9-8 (7-0)