Wisconsin hits road looking for upset over two undefeated foes
Wisconsin struggled in its final home match of the season.Image By: courtesy of UWBadgers.com
The Wisconsin women’s tennis team (6-4) will travel to Blacksburg, Va., this weekend to take on the Virginia Tech Hokies (6-0) and James Madison Dukes (6-0), two teams with whom the Badgers do not have much history.
After starting the season off hot, UW will hope to rebound from a four-match losing streak, which saw it drop to 6-4 on the season. The Badgers have lost three of their last four matches to teams in the top-25, dropping three straight matchups to Florida, Wake Forest and Michigan over the course of the 2018 ITA National Team Indoor Championship, played in Madison earlier this month. Last weekend, the team lost a close match in Las Vegas to the University of Arizona.
The Badgers are currently unranked and will face two similarly unranked opponents in their series this weekend.
The Badgers will face Virginia Tech on its home court on Friday afternoon. Both the Badgers and Hokies can claim one player ranked in the ITA top-125: Virginia Tech’s Natalie Novotna at No. 61 and Wisconsin freshman Lexi Keberle at No. 111. Neither team has a ranked doubles pairs.
Despite their absence from the rankings, the Hokies have posted strong results in their matches so far this season. However, all of their wins have come against unranked teams. After playing the Badgers, the Hokies will play No. 27 Clemson on Sunday.
After taking Saturday off, Wisconsin will return to the court Sunday to face the James Madison Dukes in a neutral court match at Virginia Tech. The Dukes do not have any ranked single players, nor do they have any ranked doubles pairs.
But JMU has dominated its opponents so far this season, taking five of its six wins by scores of 7-0 or 6-1. Their other win, which came against the Naval Academy, was decided by a score of 4-3.
This weekend marks the first time ever that the Badgers will face James Madison in women’s tennis. The last time they faced Virginia Tech was in 2008, a competition that was won by the Hokies. The Badgers hope to set a strong precedent for future matches against these two schools.
The series this weekend is the last of the Wisconsin’s out-of-conference schedule. Coming up, UW will play 11 straight matches against Big Ten opponents, starting against Minnesota next weekend. The Big Ten currently has five teams ranked in the top 50.
This weekend’s matches are scheduled for 3 p.m. on Friday and 10 a.m. on Sunday.Subscribe to The Daily Cardinal Newsletter