No. 14 Women's Tennis to face No. 8 Cal on Sunday
March 13, 2009
The Arizona State Women's Tennis team returns home from the Golden State to do battle with eighth-ranked Cal on Sunday in Tempe. The game begins at 11:00 a.m. PT at ASU's Whiteman Tennis Center.
Although the team faced setbacks on the road this week, falling to No. 10 USC 5-2 and No. 9 UCLA 4-3 in non-conference contests, they remain undefeated at home and lead the Pac-10 with a flawless 3-0 record. They will seek to defend their home turf with an arsenal of powerful players such a sophomore Kelcy McKenna, who is ranked third in the nation and has collected an impressive 28-5 record in singles play this season. They will also look to No. 79 Micaela Hein, a steady fixture on the No. 3 court for the Devils. Junior Nadia Abdala has also made a name for herself, upsetting two ranked opponents last weekend: No. 27 Andrea Remynse of UCLA 7-5, 2-6, (11-9) and No. 22 Sarah Fansler of USC 4-6, 6-4, 1-0 (10-5).
Scouting the Bears
Against Cal (9-2, 2-0 Pac-10), the Devils are 13-35 all-time and the Golden Bears have won the last seven meetings. Cal is ranked eighth in the nation and boasts four top 50 players: No. 20 Marina Cossou, No. 23 Bojana Bobusic, No. 26 Jana Juricova and Claire Ilcinkas at No. 42. They also bring with them two of the top 15 doubles teams in the US in Cossou and Ilcinkas, who currently hold the No. 7 ranking and No. 13 Mari Andersson and Juricova. Cal has a strong season record, but has lost two of four road games in the Dual season.
Women's Tennis hosts Purdue on Tuesday, March 15. The match will begin at 1:30 p.m. PT in Tempe at ASU's Whiteman Tennis Center.
Legends of the Fall
The Fall 2008 season saw ASU dominating competition at the Cal Nike Invitational, where sophomore Kelcy McKenna took home the ITA Singles Gold crown as well as the ITA Doubles Gold title with teammate Micaela Hein. ASU also collected its third ITA All-American in two years with McKenna.
The 2009 season has seen exciting doubles action from Arizona State, with the return of partners Micaela Hein and Kelcy McKenna, who finished with an impressive 17-4 overall record in 2008 and are currently ranked 10th nationally. Senior Laila Abdala has also paired up for a final season with her sister, junior Nadia Abdala for a No. 50 spot in the national rankings with an 8-2 record. The sisters will be in quest of success after posting 10 wins last season.
To Be the Best...
The Sun Devils have traditionally played one of the most rigorous schedules in the nation and this season will be no different. The team will be tested with a mixture of strong non-conference play and strenuous Pac-10 matchups, including back-to-back matchups with No. 10 USC and No. 3 UCLA.
Where They Stack Up
Last year, the Sun Devils finished the season ranked at No. 23 posting a 15-8 overall record, a fourth place conference finish and making it to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Arizona State is currently ranked 14th with four returning letter winners and powerhouse Kelcy McKenna, currently No. 3 in the nation.
At The Helm
Coach Sheila McInerney enters her 25th season at the helm of the Sun Devil program. In 2008, she led the team to a university record 21st consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance following a winning 15-8 season. Those wins saw ASU upset NCAA Champion UCLA, as well as conquer Stanford for the first time in program history.
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