EVANSTON, Ill. –Northwestern women’s tennis will get the 2018-19 campaign underway this weekend when it hosts the Wildcat Invite at Vandy Christie Tennis Center.
Chicago’s Big Ten Team will be looking to get off to a good start in its bid to follow up an impressive 2017-18 season. The ‘Cats finished last campaign with a 23-6 record, including a perfect 11-0 mark in the Big Ten en route to winning the conference title outright.
NU followed up its regular season domination with a pair of victories in the 2018 NCAA Tournament, each by a score of 4-0, to reach the Round of 16. The team’s success was recognized with a slew of awards, including putting three members on the All-Big Ten Team, with Erin Larner and Maddie Lipp unanimous selections. Larner became just the seventh in program history to be named All-Big Ten in each of her four seasons at Northwestern, while current senior Lee Or was also awarded the honor for the first time.
Along with Or, Northwestern will return four additional members from the 2017-18 squad as they look to offset the losses of last year’s seniors Larner, Lipp and Alex Chatt. Senior Rheeya Doshi, junior Julie Byrne, and sophomores Caroline Pozo and Inci Ogut are all back, and head coach Claire Pollard has added three first-years and a graduate student to complete the 2018-19 roster.
Pollard enters her 20th season at the helm for Northwestern, having led the Wildcats to the NCAA Tournament in each of the past 19. Pollard has also won 13 regular season Big Ten titles and another 13 Big Ten Tournament titles.
The weekend’s action will boast a total of 13 teams in play, as NU will host DePaul, Pitt, Michigan, Michigan State, UIC, Chicago State, Columbia, Princeton, Utah, Lewis, Illinois and Kentucky. Along with the ‘Cats, Michigan, Illinois and Kentucky each finished the 2018 dual season ranked in the top 25 nationally.
A year ago, Chicago’s Big Ten Team fielded doubles teams of Pozo/Or and Ogut/Byrne for the Wildcat Invite, with both teams dominating the opposition and winning all three of their matches over the course of the weekend. Pozo and Byrne each picked up an additional two victories in singles competition.
Play will begin at 9:30 a.m. CT on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, and will continue into the evening all three days. Up-to-date results will be available on NUSports.com throughout the weekend.
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