If the Michigan women”s tennis team was looking for a springboard into the dual match season, it found it this weekend at the Tribe Classic at William & Mary College in Williamsburg, Va.
Although the Wolverines were the only unranked team among the invited, they proved their merit on the court, posting a 12-4 overall singles record and recording four doubles wins, despite some lineup shuffling.
“I think the weekend went well for us, we played some really tough matches,” freshman Leanne Rutherford said.
The other three teams at the Classic may not have expected this kind of performance out of the Wolverines, considering the Wolverines played two sophomore and two freshmen in the top four singles spots. But No. 27 Louisiana State, No. 49 William & Mary, and No. 50 Penn State all lost three or more matches to Michigan.
“We definitely felt that we should be ranked. We were either right in there splitting with the teams or dominating,” junior Jen Duprez said.
Yesterday, the Wolverines were able to get an early look at the Big Ten in the form of the Nittany Lions. Michigan once again dominated singles play, taking all five matches against Penn State in straight sets. Although the Big Ten season is still weeks away, the Wolverines were still able to gain some confidence from their performance.
“You go into the season, and you feel good about your team, but you don”t know how you stack up against others,” Duprez said. “So it was nice to see where we are, and how we compared (to Penn State).”
Also impressive was the Wolverines” performance on Friday against Louisiana State, as Michigan took four of five singles matches from the Tigers and thoroughly dominated play. Then, yesterday the Wolverines took two out of three doubles matches from Louisiana State also.
“Everyone looked like they were playing pretty well,” Duprez said. “People matched up well in all the matches.”
In terms of individual performances, junior Joanne Musgrove, sophomore Kim Plaushines and Rutherford each finished undefeated in singles play. Also, freshman Michelle DaCosta was able to turn in a 2-1 performance.
“I think everyone is going to have a huge part on our team, we”re all strong singles and doubles players,” Rutherford said. “We all play a huge role.”