Women's Tennis Back in Action This Weekend at Alabama
Oct. 6, 2005
The University of Memphis women's tennis team will return to action this weekend at the University of Alabama's 20th Annual Roberta Alison Fall Tennis Classic. Twelve teams and 74 players make up the field for the 2005 event, including South Alabama, Samford, Auburn-Montgomery, Birmingham Southern, Mississippi State, Florida State, Iowa, USF, Georgia Southern, UL Monroe, Memphis and host Alabama.
Senior Andrea Feichtinger will start her tournament in the B singles draw against the draw's top seed, USF's Liz Cruz, while sophomore Brooke Cowie will open against Mississippi State's Kukoulina Polina on Friday in the D singles.
In the 3.0 singles bracket, senior Kristin Noble will open against Iowa's Merel Beelen, while junior Christina Wieser will open against Tatiana Feit, also from Mississippi State, in the 4.0 singles bracket.
Fellow junior Alex Tjioe is the No. 2 seed in the 4.5 singles draw, and will face Samford's Katie McMiller Friday.
The Lady Tiger freshmen will both play in the 5.0 singles category, with freshman Ekin Zafir earning a top seed and an opening match against Christie Baker from Samford. Flavia Russo will open against the No. 2 seed, Lauren Pitcher, from Samford, in that same bracket.
In doubles, the Lady Tigers will have three entries for the tournament. Feichtinger and Alex Tjioe are the top seed in the D doubles bracket, and will open against the team of Kirk and Williams from Birmingham Southern on Friday, while the team of Cowie and Zafir will open against the No. 2 seeded team of Whitney Ebor and Anna Rynarzewska from Florida State in the C doubles category.
The duo of Kristin Noble and Christina Wieser will play in 3.0 doubles, starting with a first round bye, then facing the winner of the Stephanie Boucher/Lauren Russell (Birmingham Southern) vs. Tatiana Feit (Mississippi State)/Kayla Berry (Iowa) match. The Birmingham Southern duo is the top seed in the 3.0 doubles bracket.
Freshman Flavia Russo will also play in the 3.0 doubles bracket. She will team with South Alabama's Mario Lehmann and will play No. 2 seed Lindsey Marsh and Lauren Wolken from Georgia Southern.
Roberta Alison was a ground-breaking female athlete for Alabama 42 years ago, when she played on the Alabama men's tennis team. The SEC decided to allow women to compete on their men's tennis teams beginning in 1963 and then-Alabama coach Jason Morton found Roberta Alison in Tuscaloosa, where Alison traveled to train on grass. Alison became the first woman to play on a varsity men's team at Alabama, playing No. 4 singles as a sophomore and junior and playing No. 1 and 2 singles by her senior season.
Alison was a four-time Blue Gray and three-time Southern tournament champion. She is a member of the Southern Tennis Hall of Fame and is also in the Women's Collegiate Tennis Hall of Fame in Wiliamsburg, Va.