DURHAM, N.C. – Just a week after sweeping No. 2 Florida, the third-ranked Duke women’s tennis team is set to play host to No. 70 Princeton Saturday at 11 a.m. at the Sheffield Indoor Tennis Center. The Blue Devils will seek to start their 11th season under head coach Jamie Ashworth with an 8-1 or better record, as well as the fifth consecutive season with at least eight wins in the first nine matches.
“We are worried more about ourselves than them,” Ashworth said. “We want to get better, we want to keep working on things, we want to develop our doubles, so we are more concerned with what we are doing on the court. It is a team we don’t see a lot of their players at tournaments, I am not familiar with their players, so really we just need to worry about ourselves and keep improving.”
The Blue Devils enter Saturday’s match coming off an impressive 4-0 sweep against second-ranked Florida Feb. 17 in Durham, N.C. The win was Duke’s fifth win against the Gators in program history, and was the first time the Blue Devils swept Florida. Junior Marianne Jodoin clinched the match for the team after downing Olivia Janowicz, 2-6, 6-4, 6-2, in the sixth position.
Sophomore Ester Goldfeld garnered ACC Player of the Week honors after topping Florida’s ninth-ranked Sofie Oyen, 6-4, 7-5, in the second position for Duke. Goldfeld, a native of Brooklyn, N.Y., has tallied a 6-1 record in singles matches this season, including a 2-1 mark over nationally-ranked opponents.
The Blue Devils success this season has in part been due to the ability of the squad to claim the doubles point in matches, tallying a perfect 7-0 mark when winning the point. Duke has registered a 42-11 (.792) overall doubles record this season, including a 16-3 (.842) mark in dual matches. The squad is led by the tandem of senior Mary Clayton and Goldfeld who own a 5-1 record in dual matches this season, including three wins over nationally-ranked opponents.
The match Saturday will be the 17th all-time meeting between the Blue Devils and Tigers, with Duke leading the overall series, 13-3. The Blue Devils have won seven consecutive matches at home against Princeton dating back to 1984, winning those matches by a combined 49-6.
Following the match with Princeton, Duke is slated to begin a four-match road trip as it travels to face two top-25 squads next weekend. The Blue Devils are set to travel to Ann Arbor, Mich., to play No. 12 Michigan Friday, March 1 at 6 p.m., before heading to South Bend, Ind., to face No. 22 Notre Dame Sunday, March 3 at 11 a.m.
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