March 9, 2014
|| No. 27 Memphis vs VCU
|| Matchday Links
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - The No. 27 University of Memphis women's tennis team (8-5) is back at The Racquet Club of Memphis on Monday at noon as the Lady Tigers take on VCU (7-5) for the second time this season following a 4-2 win over the Rams in January. Memphis will be looking to extend its program record home winning streak to 37 matches.
ITA Team Rankings
After appearing at No. 43 in the ITA's first computer rankings of the season last week, Memphis jumped 16 spots this week to No. 27, the third-highest ranking in program history.
Memphis is coming off a 2-1 week with a 4-3 upset win over then-No. 26 Pepperdine and a 1-1 record in New York City. In the Big Apple, the Lady Tigers defeated Kansas State, 4-0, before falling to then-No. 36 Columbia, 4-3. Freshman Anki Wind led Memphis with four wins on the week, including a 3-0 mark at No. 4 singles. Her lone loss came at No. 1 doubles, falling to Columbia's No. 17 duo of Bianca Sanon and Kanika Vaidya.
Home Win Streak
After Memphis' home-opening weekend against Murray State and Chattanooga and the upset win over No. 26 Pepperdine, the Lady Tigers extended their school record home win streak to 36 matches. Memphis has been dominant in the Bluff City under the reign of head coach Lee Taylor Walker, who holds a 48-6 record at home. The Lady Tigers' last defeat at home came on Apr. 9, 2009, when Arkansas State handed Memphis a 6-1 loss. It was the only home loss of the season as the Lady Tigers went 6-1.
Monday's match will be the second meeting ever between Memphis and VCU after the teams opened the season against each other at the ITA Kick-Off Weekend. The Lady Tigers posted a 4-2 victory over the Rams by taking the doubles point and getting wins at the bottom of the lineup from Caroline Wegner, Marta Morga and Anki Wind.
Scouting the Rams
VCU enters Monday with a five-match win streak after starting the season 2-5. The Rams began January ranked No. 39 but after four losses to nationally-ranked teams and a defeat to unranked Wake Forest, VCU has yet to return to the top 75. This will just be VCU's second road match of the season, falling 6-1 to then-No. 14 Virginia. The Rams have two nationally-ranked players in No. 73 Cindy Chala (19-3) and No. 115 Yukako Noi (14-8).
As senior Stefanie Mikesz competes in her final dual season, she continues to climb up the school record books for all-time wins at Memphis. Mikesz has totaled 83 doubles victories and 77 singles wins while playing for the Lady Tigers for fifth and seventh in the all-time records, respectively. She is just 10 wins away from breaking the career doubles mark of 92, set by Sabrina Lindemann (2000-03). Junior Alyssa Hibberd is also high on the all-time charts, totaling 66 singles wins and 70 doubles wins in her time at Memphis. Hibberd is currently ranked ninth in both categories.
Memphis freshmen Marta Morga and Anki Wind have had great starts for the Lady Tigers this spring, compiling a combined 13-1 record in singles play. Morga is currently riding a six-match win streak and has won eight of her last nine matches. Wind has been just as impressive, carrying a five-match win streak and also winning eight of the last nine. Morga is 6-0 in dual play this season, while Wind holds a 7-1 record in dual matches with her only loss coming in a third-set tiebreaker against TCU's Seda Arantekin. Morga is 16-5 this season and Wind has a team-high 17 wins with a 17-9 mark.
Up Next for Memphis
Memphis is back on the road this weekend with a trip to the Sunshine State to face conference foes USF and UCF. For some of the team, this will be their fourth trip to Florida this year with competitions in Amelia Island and Sarasota in the fall and a spring-opening tournament in Miami. Memphis will be back in Florida next month for the American Athletic Conference Championships in Tampa.