Weekend in Virginia Concludes Non-conference Slate for Women’s Tennis
Kristin Norton has gone 4-3 in singles and 5-2 in doubles during the dual match portion of the 2011-12 season (photo Gil Talbot).
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- The Harvard women's tennis team will look to get back on a winning track as they travel to Virginia to take on William & Mary and Old Dominion this weekend. The two matches will finish Harvard's non-conference schedule.
The Crimson (5-4) has won four of its last five after starting the year 1-3 during dual matches. Harvard is 22-20 in individual matches and 16-5 on the doubles side during the 2012 portion of its schedule. In singles, Camille Jania leads the team with a 5-0 record. The junior has paired with Samantha Gridley to provide the Crimson with its winningest doubles team at 5-2. Hideko Tachibana and Kristin Norton have also been successful during dual match doubles contest, going 5-2 in the No. 1 position. Tachibana and Norton were ranked No. 33 in the ITA doubles rankings March 13.
William & Mary
The Tribe (4-11) dropped out of the ITA rankings for the first time this season after dropping matches at North Carolina State, 5-2, and No. 7 Virginia, 6-1. William & Mary is led by sophomore Maria Belaya, who is ranked No. 109 in the country in singles and has teamed with classmate Jeltje Loomans for a No. 39 ranking in doubles. Belaya is 8-6 in singles and 9-2 in doubles when playing with Loomans.
The Crimson will look to end a 19-match losing streak to William & Mary. Harvard nearly ended its drought last season, but fell, 4-3. The Tribe lead the all-time series against the Crimson, 21-6.
Old Dominion (9-5) enters the weekend on a three-game losing streak after opening the year with a 9-2 mark. Diana Ivanova, a second team All-CAA pick in 2010-11, is off to a hot start in 2012, as the junior has a 10-1 record in singles play and an identical mark in doubles. Ivanova has coupled with sophomore Melissa Esnal Olguin, another second team All-CAA selection last season, at No. 1 doubles.
Harvard is 4-1 in the all-time series against Old Dominion, but the Monarchs took the last meeting between the two teams, 5-2, in 2009.
The Crimson returns to Cambridge to face Cornell April 6 and Columbia April 7 to begin the Ivy League season. The Ancient Eight schedule will run throughout the four weekends in April with the champion receiving an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament. Harvard, which last won the title in 2009, finished tied for fourth in last year's standings with a 4-3 conference record.