OXFORD, Ohio – The Miami tennis team kicks off its 2013-14 campaign at the Ball State Invitational in Muncie, Ind., this weekend. The RedHawks will face players from Ball State, Arkansas State, Butler, Chicago State, Cleveland State, Eastern Kentucky, Illinois State, IUPUI, Notre Dame, Valparaiso and Wright State.
Miami enters the year coming off another strong season in which it won its fifth straight MAC regular-season title, won the MAC tournament and made its first NCAA appearance since 2010. Head coach Anca Dumitrescu is eager to see how her players handle the first tournament of the year. Ball State hosted last year’s MAC Tournament, where the RedHawks came away with a championship finish.
“I am looking forward to seeing how we go out there and compete,” said Dumitrescu. “We obviously have some great memories from that site from last year. We’ve been working a lot on our consistency, attitude wise as well as on the court. We’ll be looking forward to seeing how we compete from a match to match basis and from a day to day basis.”
Dumitrescu returns her entire squad from last year and adds one player to the team in freshman Andreea Badileanu. Key returners include senior Nimisha Mohan, who primarily played No. 1 singles for Miami last year. Junior Alix Thurman and senior Christiana Raymond regularly played at No. 2 and No. 3 last year.
Last season, Mohan led the squad with 23 wins, followed by Thurman and Raymond tied for second on the team with 22 wins apiece. Thurman racked up an 11-4 record last year out of the No. 2 singles spot. Raymond went undefeated in MAC play (8-0) and enters this season having won her last 10 matches.
Miami also returns junior Christine Guerrazzi, sophomore Ana Rajkovic, junior Ramona Costea and sophomore Chloe Heerden, who played primarily in the No. 4, No. 5 and No. 6 spots for Miami last season. In doubles play, Mohan and Thurman combined for a 14-8 overall record. Guerrazzi and Raymond were the only other doubles pair to play together consistently, earning an overall 7-6 record.
The Ball State Invitational will consist of both singles and doubles play. Tournament play starts Friday at 9 a.m. and concludes Sunday afternoon. Miami finished 46-18 in tournament action last season.
The RedHawks return home to Oxford next weekend when they host the Miami Invitational, Sept. 28-29. Action begins on Saturday morning and wraps up Sunday afternoon. Admission to Miami tennis matches is free.