Women’s tennis aims for success in spring season

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Seniors hope to lead squad past tough conference opponents

By DAN MARCUS
Staff Writer
[email protected]

Senior Deb Landeau looks to lead the Gators past nationally ranked, conference newcomer DePauw this spring season. COURTESY OF SPORTS INFORMATION

With four seniors leading the women’s tennis squad this season, the team aims for a strong showing this spring, looking to capitalize on their 20th place ranking in the Central Region by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association.

Experience is not the only thing on the Gators’ side. Expectations are high aft er last season, when ITA ranked squad had a school-record five players named All-Conference.

This season, the Gators face a tough conference schedule, which will feature a new opponent. DePauw joined the NCAC in the fall and is currently ranked at 16th in the nation.

“There will be challenges with a new team entering our conference, but we are excited to prove that we can remain competitive in the 2012 season,” said senior Elyse Schmitt.

The NCAC is one of the leading conferences in Division III tennis.

“I would really like to see our team beat some of our toughest competitors in this conference, Oberlin and Kenyon,” said Deb Landeau,’12. “Last year we were able to defeat Oberlin and we were extremely close to beating Kenyon, but I think we can do it this year.”

Last season, Denison won the conference championship. DePauw and Kenyon are also expected to compete for the conference title, while the Gators hope they can add themselves to this mix.

Coach Luteran also acknowledged the stretch in the schedule where the team will face non-conference opponents as a barometer for their progression as a unit.

Over spring break, the team will travel to Hilton Head, South Carolina where the team will play Wisconsin-Eau Claire, Carleton, St. Thomas, and Smith.

All of the teams they will face in South Carolina are currently ranked in the ITA Central Region Top 25.

The team will travel to Erie to play John Carroll University on Sunday. Despite their prior dominance over John Carroll Luteran knows the importance of staying focus and remaining
humble.

“The key is to go out on the court strong and eliminate mistakes,” Schmitt said.

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