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Tennis Enters Big 12 Conference Tournament As No. 4 Seed

Apr 26, 2007

BOULDER - The University of Colorado tennis team, winners of six straight matches begin the second half of its season this weekend at the 2007 Big 12 Tennis Championships on Thursday through Sunday at the Plaza Tennis Courts in Kansas City, Mo.

The Buffaloes (16-6, 9-2 Big 12) seeded No. 4 are having their best season in eight years and begin play against No. 5 seed and No. 69 ranked Oklahoma State (16-7) on Friday, April 27 at 11 a.m. (MST).

CU's 16 team victories and nine conference wins are the most since the 1999 season.

If CU wins their quarterfinal match, they will play top-seeded and defending champion Baylor (19-6) or No. 8 Nebraska (13-7) in the semifinal round on Saturday at 10 a.m. (MST). The Bears lone conference loss this spring came at Colorado back on March 4.

The Buffaloes, ranked No. 35 nationally are one of five ranked schools in the tournament along with No. 14 Baylor, No. 21 Texas A&M, No. 41 Texas and No. 71 Oklahoma State.

CU is 10-10 against the Big 12 Tournament field since 1997 and has received a first round bye twice (1-1 in those quarterfinal matches). 

Eight-year head coach Nicole Kenneally brings a 7-6 mark into the conference post-season with semifinal appearances in 2003 and 2005.

The Buffs are led by an experienced trio that has accumulated over 21 triumphs apiece during the season. Sophomore Monica Milewski is team's lone nationally ranked player (No. 36) joins junior Gleisy Torres Torres with 25 victories each, along with sophomore Franziska Jendrian, who has 21 victories.

Rounding out strong singles play is freshman Melisa Esposito (17-5), Camila Belassi (16-12) and Veera Nurmi (15-11).

In doubles, CU boasts three tandems that have won least 10 matches in dual play, a school first in 15 years. Jendrian and Milewski are 15-6, followed by Esposito and Martina Sedivec at 13-2; and Belassi and Torres Torres are 10-11. Also at No. 3, Esposito/Sedivec went 9-0 against the Big 12.



Tournament Notes: The women's championship features the following winners ? Baylor (2006), Texas (1997-2002, 2005), Oklahoma State (2003) and Texas A&M (2004) ... CU is 3-4 in quarterfinal round matches ... The last time the women's tennis team won this many matches they earned a NCAA Tournament berth in the spring of 2003. The 2002-03 team went 14-9 and 5-6 in conference play ... Monica Milewski and Gleisy Torres Torres are the first CU pair to win at least 25 matches in the same year, and only the sixth pair to win 25-plus ... Milewski, Torres Torres and Franziska Jendrian are the first trio to win 20+ since 1998-99 ... Four CU women have won seven or more dual match victories equaling the 2005 team. Milewski and Melisa Esposito have eight triumphs each, followed by Jendrian and Gleisy Torres Torres with seven apiece ... Entering the Big 12 Tournament Milewski has won five of six singles matches; Camila Belassi has won four of her last six matches; Esposito has won six straight; Jendrian has won four of her last six; Torres Torres has won six of her last seven. In doubles, Jendrian/Milewski and Esposito/Sedivec each have won five of six ... Of their 16 victories, Monica Milewski leads the team with six match clinchers. Jendrian and Torres Torres each have three, followed by Belassi and Veera Nurmi with two apiece.