January 30, 2009

Women's tennis team gets spring schedule started Sunday at MTSU

Lineup features for freshmen, three sophomores

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. -- The Tennessee Tech women's tenis team plays its first dual match of the spring season Sunday when it faces the Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders at Nashboro Village. First-year head coach Dan Silverstein will have four freshmen and three sophomores in his opening-day lineup.

"This is an extremely young team, but they've been improving every single day in practice," Silverstein said. "We're looking forward to watching them compete. We have talent, but it's raw. Experience will be the biggest thing, and we're lookng forward to the being at a point where we're playing our best for the OVC schedule in March, and the OVC Tournament in April."

The match against MTSU begins at 12 noon.

Kelly Holtzhausen, a sophomore from South Africa, will play at No. 1 singles and Katie Barnhill, a sophomore from New Braunfels, Texas, is scheduled to play at No. 2. That pair will team up for Tech's No. 1 doubles combination.

At No. 3, Silverstein will send freshman Tatiana Denezhkina, while freshman Alena Krutkina will play at No. 4. That pair, both from Russia, will make up the No. 2 doubles team.

Sophomore Diana Woodcock from Colombia returns to action this spring after missing the fall schedule. She's slated to play No. 5 singles, while freshman Laura Porras, also a product of Colombia, plays at No. 6 singles. The No. 3 doubles duo will pair Woodcock with Joanna Corkern, a freshman from Bentonville, Ark.

Middle Tennessee State will also open the season this weekend, but the Blue Raiders will have a tune-up match behind them before Sunday's contest. They travel to Chattanooga Friday evening to face the UTC Lady Mocs.