Women's Tennis Travels to Arizona for Wednesday Dual; Hosts No. 5 Duke & Minnesota

March 7, 2005

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ON TAP: The Arizona State University women's tennis team (3-3, 1-2 Pac-10) travels to Tucson to face Arizona (5-5; 0-3 Pac-10) on Wednesday, March 9 at 1:00 p.m. The dual will not count towards the Pac-10 standings. ASU then returns home to take on No. 5 Duke (7-3) on Monday, March 14 at 12:00 p.m. and Minnesota (5-4) on Thursday, March 17 at 12:00 p.m.

WEEKEND RECAP: ASU was unable to pull off the upset at home last weekend against No. 15 Cal or No. 1 Stanford. Against Cal, ASU dropped the doubles point, but Joslynn Burkett and Wendy Pilecka were able to take an 8-7 (7) win from Cal's Cristina Visico and Tiffany Lee. In singles play, the Devils played well, pushing four of the six singles matches into three sets, but Kady Pooler was the only Devil to pull off a singles win as she defeated Jessica Shu 1-6, 6-4, 6-4. Against Stanford, ASU played well on the day with four of six singles matches going all three sets, but ASU could not finish one off falling 6-0. Due to inclement weather, the match started off late, therefore, only singles were played.

SUN DEVILS WIN TOURNAMENT TITLES: Jessica Leitch breezed to the Flight 2 Singles Championship at the Freeman Memorial Championship in Las Vegas with a 6-0, 6-3 win over Stanford's Joanna Kao. Leitch, a freshman from Dallas, Texas, then teamed up with Joslynn Burkett and advanced all the way to the championship of the Flight 1 Doubles Consolation. However, in the Flight 2 Doubles Consolation Championship, ASU did prevail as the tandem of Sabrina Capannolo and Rebecca Rankin defeated South Carolina's Grace Blakely/Justine Walsh, 8-3.

HEAD COACH Sheila McInerney: Sheila McInerney is in her 21st season at the helm of the Sun Devil program after leading last year's team to its eighth consecutive (18 of the past 20 seasons) NCAA Sweet 16 appearance in 2004. McInerney has also guided Arizona State to eight quarterfinal appearances in her tenure, and has made the NCAA tournament in 19 of her 20 seasons. ASU is one of only five schools (Stanford, Duke, Georgia, Tennessee) to have reached the NCAA Sweet 16 or better for the past eight years. McInerney, who owns a career record of 312-197, posted three 20-win seasons (1986, '90, '01) to her credit and guided the Sun Devils to 17 consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances. ASU has finished in the top-10 five of the past eight seasons, and an astounding 13 times in her 20 seasons.

HOME SWEET HOME: Over the past seven seasons, Arizona State holds an impressive 71-29 (.710) overall dual record at the Whiteman Tennis Center. The Devils non-conference record is even more impressive with a 63-19 (.768) mark.

SCHEDULE STRENGTH: Once again, ASU will face a strong non-conference slate along with the always powerful Pac-10 Conference. Fifteen of ASU's 20 opponents earned NCAA bids to last year's tournament (five to the Round of 16/four to the quarterfinals), while seven of ASU's 2005 opponents are currently in the top-25, including six of the top-13 teams.

DEVILS IN THE RANKINGS: ASU moved up 10 spots to No. 27 in the ITA Rankings (March 1). Sophomore Sabrina Capannolo holds a No. 89 singles ranking, while the doubles team of Joslynn Burkett and Wendy Pilecka check in at No. 34.

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