Red and White take on Indiana Hoosiers in spring season opener
Published: Thursday, January 17, 2013
Updated: Thursday, January 17, 2013 23:01
After having a strong showing in the fall season, the Miami University women’s tennis team seeks to assert itself against the University of Indiana (IU) this weekend. The RedHawks are coming off of a 2011-2012 season in which they earned their fourth straight regular season Mid-American Conference title, but would eventually fall to the University of Akron for the second consecutive year in a 3-4 decision in the MAC Tournament final.
“We believe that the experience gained from last season will benefit us,” third-year head coach Anca Dumitrescu said. “We’re facing a quality team in Indiana, and we look forward to competing.”
The Red and White are coming into the spring season with much to look forward to and build upon, much in part due to their high level of play in the fall.
During the fall season, the team went 46-18 in singles play with standout performances from sophomore Ramona Costea (9-2 in the fall), junior Nimisha Mohan (8-2), sophomore Christine Guerrazzi (7-3), and junior Christiana Raymond (7-4). In doubles, the teams of Guerrazzi and Raymond and Mohan and sophomore Alix Thurman combined for 13 of the ’Hawks 18 wins during the fall season.
“It’s good to be back in season,” Raymond said. “We’re encouraged by the work that team has put into getting better. It’s time to show the payoff for that work and be competitive.”
During the 2012 spring season, these four RedHawks also were major contributors, accounting for 63 of the 122 wins in singles play. In doubles, the ’Hawks had a winning percentage of .580 and featured many team configurations.
“I learned a lot as a freshman last season,” Guerazzi said of the 2011-2012 season. “I’m not quite as nervous as I was and I now know what to expect. Our goals for this season are to earn our fifth straight regular season MAC championship and make our way through the MAC tournament and on to the NCAA Tournament.”
Indiana will prove to be a tough test for Miami, as IU looks to improve after suffering a 4-2 defeat in the Big Ten Conference Quarterfinals against the University of Michigan.
The Hoosiers have plenty of talent returning to the court this season, with junior Kayla Fujimoto, senior Leslie Hureau, and sophomores Alecis Kauss and Katie Klyczec all coming off of 20-win seasons in 2011-2012. In doubles play, Indiana went 87-56 on the season, with contributions from the team of Hureau and Kauss with a record of 12-5.
“We have to stick together,” Guerrazzi said. “As long as we keep working hard in practice, we’ll be competitive on Saturday.”
Dumitrescu echoed her sophomore player’s sentiment on the upcoming match this weekend.
“We [have] matured and grown as a team as we made our way through the fall season” she said of her team. “All we have to do now is execute.”
The RedHawks square off against the Hoosiers in the spring season opener in Cincinnati, Ohio (Western Hills) Saturday at 11 a.m.