Women's tennis gets younger
What to Know:
The Iowa women’s tennis team finished just 2-9 in the Big Ten in 2015 and graduated almost half of its lineup, creating doubts about what direction the program is headed in.
Whom to Know:
Sophomores-to-be Zoe Douglas and Anastasia Reimchen are at the head of a younger group, and they will be players to watch this season.
Reimchen played at the No. 3 singles position with stretches at the No. 2 spot sprinkled in throughout the 2015 campaign. Getting that experience in is going to be invaluable to her this season and later in her career. With the No. 1 and No. 2 singles players graduating, Reimchen could very well start at No. 1 singles.
Douglas received the team’s Most Valuable Player and Most Improved Player awards at the team’s annual banquet. She broke into the singles lineup at No. 6, and showed continual improvement as she progressed to No. 4. She also collected one of the best singles records of the team’s season (6-4, 4-4).
Annette Dohanics returns as the team’s only senior, so expect her to have a big year as well. She came up huge for Iowa in a couple matches this past season, and head coach Katie Dougherty noted her ability to clinch tough sets in tight situations.
Dohanics spent the majority of the season at No. 4 in singles, but she should move up and have an effect in the absence of the graduated seniors.
She received the team’s Grinder Award for the third-straight year, an honor given to the Hawkeye who consistently contributes to the betterment of the team through hard work and dedication. If a three-time winner of that award isn’t the personality you want to hang your senior leadership on, there’s no telling what is.
The Hawkeyes have struggled in the Big Ten in recent years, failing to secure a winning conference record in the past five seasons. This younger team will try to develop skills and bring the Hawkeyes back to above .500 in the conference next season. But realistically, the team’s best chances at conference success may be a couple years down the line.
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