October 17, 2006

Sports Shorts 10/17/06: Women's tennis ends fall season on high note

Competing against a variety of local teams at the Chicago State Invitational over the weekend, the Maroons triumphed over opponents from higher divisions in a promising preview of spring season.

Against top regional competition, the Maroons notched a 17–14 combined record for doubles and singles over the three-day event.

In doubles, the team went 7–4, with a victory over Division II squad Ferris State 3–0. Chicago also defeated Division I Evansville 2–1, posting wins from the pair of first-year Marissa Lin and second-year Vindya Dayananda at first and second-year Anuja Parikh and fourth-year Ade Omodele-Lucien at second.

While the squad’s 10–10 record might not have reflected it, the Maroons produced a number of strong singles performances, led by Omodele-Lucien and Lin. Omodele-Lucien won the B Draw, defeating opponents from UW-Milwaukee 6–1, 6–1 in her semi-final round and 6–2, 6–2 in the final. Lin and third-year Michele Parad were semi-finalists in the A and B draws, respectively.

“I was very pleased with our regional results and the way we competed as a team at the event,” said head coach Marty Perry.

As Lin showcased earlier this month at the ITA regional tournament, Perry has once again succeeded in bringing in a recruiting class that is ready to compete at the highest level. With only four players returning from a squad that made its NCAA tournament debut last spring, how quickly the new players adapt will be critical. Performances like Lin’s indicate that this won’t be much of a challenge for the Maroons.

The weekend action brought an end to the one-month-long fall season, which also included the ITA tournament. This short season should allow first-years to adjust to playing with the team in preparation for the spring.

“It gives the coaches a chance to work with the players and get to know the incoming first year players. Our goal for the fall is to prepare our players to play well and hopefully put themselves into a position where they can win either a regional singles or doubles title and advance to the ITA Small College Championships in Florida,” said Perry, who is in his fourth year at the helm of the men’s and women’s teams.

“I was very pleased with our regional results and the way we competed as a team at the event; the results should give our players the needed belief in each other to approach the coming season with excitement and confidence.”