No. 1 Duke (9-1) vs. No. 25 Notre Dame (5-4)
Friday, Feb. 28 | 6:00 p.m.
Durham, N.C. | Sheffield Indoor Tennis Center
No. 1 Duke (9-1) vs. No. 11 North Carolina (10-2)
Sunday, March 2 | 12 p.m.
Durham, N.C. | Ambler Tennis Stadium
DURHAM, N.C. – The No. 1 Duke women’s tennis team welcomes two ACC opponents to Durham, N.C., this weekend, competing against No. 25 Notre Dame (5-4) Friday, Feb. 28, in the Sheffield Indoor Tennis Center and Sunday, March 2 against No. 11 North Carolina (10-2) at Ambler Tennis Stadium. Duke currently owns a 1-1 ACC record, opening ACC play last weekend. The Blue Devils fell to No. 21 Virginia, 5-2, Friday, Feb. 21, before rebounding to defeat Syracuse, 6-1, Sunday, Feb. 23.
All regular season Duke women’s tennis home events at Sheffield Indoor Tennis Center and Ambler Tennis Stadium are free to the public. General public parking is available in the Blue Zone parking lot off of Duke University Road.
Notre Dame Series History
The Blue Devils lead the series against the Fighting Irish, 17-3. Duke won the most recent meeting between the two teams, defeating Notre Dame, 5-2. The Blue Devils enter Friday’s contest on a four-match win streak with the last Duke loss coming on March 12, 2009. Over the four-match stretch, Duke defeated Notre Dame by a combined score of 23-5.
Scouting the Fighting Irish
Notre Dame enters Friday’s contest looking to earn its first conference win of the season. The Fighting Irish, currently on a three-match losing streak, fell to 19th-ranked Georgia Tech, as well as 20th-ranked Miami to open conference play. The doubles pair of Quinn Gleason and Britney Sanders rank 23rd in the nation, posting a 6-4 ledger in 2014, including a 2-3 mark against nationally ranked opponents.
North Carolina Series History
The Blue Devils lead the series against the Tar Heels, 44-32. Duke ended a two-match losing streak against North Carolina on March 2, when the Blue Devils defeated the Tar Heels, 4-2, in the quarterfinal round of the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) National Team Indoors Championship. The two teams share a storied history, including a Duke 26-match win streak that ran from April 12, 1987 to March 21, 2004. Last season, Duke fell to the Tar Heels at the ITA National Team Indoors Championship and during conference play, 4-0, the previous two times the teams met.
Scouting the Tar Heels
The Tar Heels boast a slew of nationally ranked singles players, including top-ranked Jamie Loeb. Loeb owns an overall ledger of 30-2 this season, with one of the two losses coming against Duke’s second-ranked Beatrice Capra. In addition to Loeb, No. 6 Hayley Carter also appears among the top 10 singles players in the nation. Carter owns a singles record of 21-4 this season. In addition to Loeb and Carter, No. 52 Caroline Price, No. 83 Whitney Kay and No. 119 Ashley Dai rank among the nation’s top-125 singles players. In doubles play, the duo of Kay and Caroline Price rank fifth while No. 9 Loeb and Carter also make a top 10 appearance. The No. 32 pair of Laura Slater and Kate Vialle round out the North Carolina doubles teams ranked among the top 60 in the nation.
“It’s probably our toughest home weekend all year, with Notre Dame and UNC,” Duke women’s tennis head coach Jamie Ashworth said. “We’ve always had great matches with both teams. We’ve been trying to make sure our emotional level is where it needs to be, to be ready to compete really well on Friday and Sunday. At the same time, we need to understand that we’re trying to win conference matches. We’re 1-1 and we have 12 conference matches left. We need to put ourselves in the best position possible for April. We were able to spend some time working individually with some people and working on specific things and I think we’ll be excited to play on Friday, starting with Notre Dame. It doesn’t get any easier Sunday. We have to be up and ready to go for both of them.”
The Duke doubles pair of freshman Alyssa Smith and senior Marianne Jodoin continues to see success this season. The tandem owns a four-match win streak, with just one loss in 10 matches this season. When together, the duo wins in impressive fashion, outscoring opponents, 59-32. Overall, Jodoin and Smith own a combined 31-8 doubles ledger, when playing together and with other teammates.
Blue Devils Ranked in ITA Polls
The Duke women’s tennis team retained the No. 1 ranking in the nation in the first computerized, point-per-match, format of the 2014 season. The Blue Devils secured the No. 1 ranking two weeks earlier after winning the ITA National Team Indoors Championship in Charlottesville, Va. Second-ranked Beatrice Capra headlines the Blue Devils appearing among the nation’s top-125 singles players. Capra previously held the No. 3 ranking in the country. In addition to Capra moving up in the rankings, junior Ester Goldfeld also saw a jump, advancing two positions to No. 18 in the nation. Senior Hanna Mar currently sits at No. 44 while freshman Alyssa Smith moved up to No. 92 in the nation, the highest ranking of her collegiate career.
In doubles, the duo of Capra and Mar advanced two positions to No. 4, while Goldfeld and junior Annie Mulholland remain in the top 30, appearing at No. 27. Goldfeld and senior Marianne Jodoin round out the Duke doubles pairs appearing among the nation’s top 60 tandems, ranking 43rd.