Dirnstorfer Finding Success at No. 1 Singles
Feb. 24, 2004
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Moving from the fifth to the top spot in the singles line-up would normally mean some struggle and at least a losing record in collegiate women's tennis. But that has not been the case for Memphis senior Marlene Dirnstorfer. Not only is Dirnstorfer not struggling, the second year Lady Tiger leads the returning players with a 5-2 overall singles mark, with one of her two losses coming to a ranked opponent.
"I think Marlene's being totally healthy and injury-free has really allowed her to show how competitive and strong a tennis player she is," Lady Tiger head coach Charlotte Peterson said. "Her being 5-2 right now just shows how strong a player she is to move from five up to one in the line-up. And she's doing well in doubles too. She is really showing how tough a competitor she is both mentally and physically."
Dirnstorfer joined the Lady Tigers in August of 2002, coming over to the U.S. from her native Austria after attending the University of Vienna for one year.
In her first semester in Memphis, Dirnstorfer went 9-1 in singles, winning a tournament title at Saint Louis, but missing the end of the fall season with a foot injury. The junior followed that up with a 12-4 mark in singles during the spring, including a 6-3 mark at No. 5 singles. But the junior suffered a setback, suffering an injury that forced her to miss the remainder of the spring season, including the C-USA Conference Championships. The junior earned one C-USA honor during the year, being named the C-USA Player of the Week for the week of Feb. 18th.
Dirnstorfer is not just a success on the court for the Lady Tigers, she was also one of five Lady Tigers to earn an ITA Scholar Athlete Award, and this fall was named one of the Tiger Academic 30 recipients for having the highest GPA on the team. Guided by Dirnstorfer and the three seniors from the 2002-03 team, the Lady Tigers won their third consecutive ITA All-Academic Team award over the summer.
The Pinsdorf, Austria, native is hoping to get accepted into graduate school at Memphis following this semester, which would allow her to compete again next season since she has one year of eligibility remaining. Dirnstorfer is majoring in International Business.