17 Sep

Women’s tennis looks to end 2010 season on a high note

first_imgAfter winning the ITA Southwest Regional Championships last weekend, four USC players are in Flushing, N.Y., today to start  play in the USTA/ITA National Intercollegiate Indoor Championships. Two other USC players will compete at Duals in the Desert, an annual tournament in Palm Springs, Calif.Serving it up · After winning the regional title, senior Maria Sanchez and three of her teammates are heading to New York to play in the USTA/ITA National Intercollegiate Indoor Championships this weekend. – Photo courtesy of USC Sports Information Sophomore Danielle Lao, the singles regional champion, senior Maria Sanchez, the regional runner-up and No. 3 seed in the country, and junior Alison Ramos and sophomore Valeria Pulido, doubles champions, will represent USC in New York.With only the top 32 singles players and top 16 doubles teams in the nation competing, it is no small feat that USC has four players in the competition. Those who participate in the tournament are champions from USTA/ITA Regional Championships nationwide, the USTA/ITA National Small College “Super Bowl” champions, the doubles champions and singles quarterfinalists from the Riviera/ITA Women’s All-American Championships, in addition to at-large and wild card selections made by the ITA National Tournament Committee.For USC players participating in the tournament, the stakes are high. This is the last tournament the team will compete in until January.“This is a single elimination tournament so [our] goal is to be a front runner. … A good start will give us a huge advantage,” Ramos said. “We are flying across the country with the goal of winning the tournament and nothing less.”With their hearts set on winning, the Women of Troy will face many obstacles on their way to the top.“It’s indoors, and we don’t get a chance to play indoors, and there’s the time zone change disadvantage,” coach Richard Gallien said. “The trick in these things is to stay alive long enough to get your sea legs.”Duals in the Desert also starts today, with freshman Kaitlyn Christian  and senior Cristala Andrews playing for USC. Senior Lyndsay Kinstler would have also participated, but she had to back out because of pneumonia.“There’s gonna be a lot of good competition, so it’ll be a good chance to get some matches in,” Christian said. “We’re just all really excited to play in preparation for our season.”USC will face UCLA and University of Georgia players in this tournament. The Women of Troy would have also battled Northwestern and University of Texas, but those two schools will not be participating because of financial reasons.The ITA Indoor Championships and the Duals in the Desert will wrap up on Friday, and the women’s tennis team has high hopes for the last individual tournaments it will participate in until early next year.“It’s our last opportunity to compete for a long time so my hope, win or lose, is that we do it with a great deal of class and integrity, and, god-willing, the kids will knock off a few matches here or there and carry that onto January,” Gallien said.last_img read more