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PREVIEW: Women’s Tennis off to ITA Region Tournament

PREVIEW: Women’s Tennis off to ITA Region Tournament

HOUGHTON, Mich. – Michigan Tech women's tennis will send several players to the ITA Midwest Regional Tournament beginning Saturday, September 24 hosted by Grand Valley State University. The individual tournament amongst Division II players in the region features singles and doubles. Draws were released Thursday.

"I was happy to see the event hosted at three different sites, which gives us an opportunity for everyone to play," said head coach Kristin Yep. "I know our freshmen are excited to go. We have a very different looking team this year. They are hardworking and our personalities mesh well and complement each other. There is a good balance between putting in the hard work every day but also having fun and enjoying spending time together. I feel we have a deeper roster going in and it will be important to stay healthy."

Last season, Nicole Ballach highlighted Michigan Tech's ITA tournament by making a run to the singles round of 16. Ballach is back this season to assist current players as Graduate Assistant Coach.

The Huskies feature three senior returners, including Dominika Bobik (Wroclaw, Poland), Neva Manas (Carmel, Indiana), and Lauren Opalewski (Oxford, Michigan).

Bobik held a 4-5 singles record, including 2-2 at No. 1, and went 3-6 in doubles to earn All-GLIAC Honorable Mention. Opalewski played mostly No. 4 singles in the spring and recorded a 5-4 doubles record. Manas appeared in nine singles matches and went 4-5, playing mostly at No. 3.

Marina Fernandez (Reus, Spain) and Chiara Heinz (Schwendi, Germany) are back as juniors and Grace Eland (Penrith, England) transferred to Tech as a graduate student this season. Emily Cojocaru (Richmond Hill, Ontario) and Ewa Podulka (Trzebnica, Poland) round out the roster as freshmen.

Bobik starts off Saturday at 10 a.m. in singles A draw against Ana Penteado (Ashland). Eland plays Zuzanna Krygier (Findlay) also in A draw. In singles B, it will be Manas facing Kumiko Yamaguchi (Davenport) in round one. Opalewski plays Chiara Wolff (Walsh) and Podulka takes on No. 6 seed Daniela Lentisco (Rockhurst).

Bobik and Eland team up in A doubles against Sienna Lopez and Hayley Tsuen of Purdue Northwest at 2:30 Saturday. Slated in B doubles are Cojocaru and Manas, up against No. 4 seed Canela Luna and Megan Hackman (Hillsdale). Podulka and Opalewski will see Sabrina Laynes and Suki Mandair (Wayne State).

The Huskies begin team matches on February 1 when they host Tiffin University at Gates Tennis Center.