Hawkeye women's tennis gets ready for Indiana and Purdue

BY MIKE MAIENZA | APRIL 05, 2013 5:00 AM

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The Iowa women’s tennis team will tackle two ranked opponents in a couple of home matches this weekend.

The Hawkeyes will take on No. 32 Indiana at 3:30 p.m. today and No.19 Purdue at 11 a.m. April 7. Both matches will take place at the Hawkeye Tennis & Recreation Complex.

After a disappointing outcome last weekend, coming up short against Penn State and Ohio State, the team is glad to be back on its home court. The Hawkeyes boast a 5-4 record at home but just a meager 2-4 record away from Iowa City.

Iowa head coach Katie Dougherty said she is excited to see what her team can do against two highly ranked opponents on her team’s home courts. 

“The fact is we haven’t been great on the road all year, and weren’t last weekend,” Dougherty said. “I thought Penn State was a very good team, and they took it from us. Ohio State, we didn’t play well enough and didn’t show up with the energy we needed, but this weekend we have to.”

One of the team’s players who has piled up wins all season and played her best tennis recently is sophomore Shelby Talcott. Talcott was one of only two players to earn a singles point in last weekend’s matches.

Talcott said she knows there are no easy matches left on the schedule but feels ready for the remaining Big Ten schedule.

“I’m going to keep fighting hard and having a good attitude. Everyone in the Big Ten that I am going to play at this point is going to be good, so just making sure I am ready for it mentally,” she said.

Another player enjoying success on the season is sophomore Morven McCulloch. She is part of the No.1 doubles team for the Hawkeyes, which has an impressive 12-3 record. She and doubles partner Ruth Seaborne defeated Ohio State the last time they played. Now, the duo looks forward to the opportunity to improve upon their record this weekend.

“Go into the match confident and know we can win,” McCulloch said. “Last weekend, we both gelled well together in our second doubles match.”

This weekend marks the first time in conference play the Hawkeyes will have the opportunity to take their game outdoors. The weather for the weekend looks like it will cooperate, and the Hawks said they’re excited about the chance to play outdoors on their home court.

“We were fortunate enough to get three outdoor matches in California over spring break, so we have been able to make that transition and play well,” Dougherty said. “We were outside until November, and yeah, this is a little late to be getting outside for a Big Ten match, but I think for a couple of our players it works into their strengths. We just have to adjust to the elements, and not make excuses, and use them to our advantage.”

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