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Women's Tennis Prepares for Big Ten Battle

March 25, 2009

EAST LANSING, Mich. - The Michigan State women's tennis team (7-10, 0-4 Big Ten) returns to action on Sunday when it hosts Wisconsin at 11 a.m., at the MSU Indoor Tennis Facility. Wisconsin leads the all-time series with the Spartans, 38-7. MSU dropped two matches to the Badgers last season, with Wisconsin edging the Spartans in the Big Ten Tournament, 4-2, ending MSU's season.

Last Time Out
The Michigan State women's tennis team dropped a 4-3 heartbreaker to No. 72 Iowa on Saturday. The Spartans then dropped a 6-1 match to No. 59 Minnesota on Sunday. The Spartans fall to 5-4 at home on the season; all of their losses have come against ITA ranked opponents - No. 54 Marshall (March 1), No. 1 Northwestern (March 7), No. 72 Iowa (March 21) and No. 59 Minnesota (March 22).

Scouting the Spartans
Michigan State is led by first-year head coach Simone Jardim and enters the weekend matches with a record of 7-10. Pacing the Spartans is Whitney Wilson (Evansville, Ind.), who has an individual record of 19-10. Anchoring the Spartans at No. 1 singles is senior Stephanie Kebler (Okemos, Mich.). On the spring, Kebler has tallied eight singles wins. Also contributing to the Spartan success is Elena Ivanova (Moscow, Russia). Ivanova is 8-6 in the No. 3 singles position this year.

Doubles Success
The Spartans have picked up the doubles point in 11 of 17 matches on the season, including in all seven victories. The doubles tandem of Manon Noe (Liancourt, France) and Wilson is 9-7 on the dual season. Compiling a 5-3 record in doubles play is the pairing of Ivanova and Ana Milosavljevic (Johannesburg, South Africa). The tandem first saw action together as the green and white opened spring play against Louisville on Jan. 18. The pair has mostly seen action in the No. 3 doubles spot during the season, but boast a perfect 2-0 record in the No. 2 spot.



Sophomore Sensations
The Spartans have received contributions this season from several sophomores. Leading the way for the class is Wilson, who leads the team with a 19-10 singles record. Also contributing to the Spartans is Noe, who also partners with Wilson to form the No. 1 doubles tandem for the Spartans. Together, they are 9-7 on the spring, with 13 victories overall this season.

Diaper Dandies
Freshman Dana Guentert (Lilburn, Ga.) has started her Spartan career with an impressive record of 14-6 on the season. Guentert is 8-2 in her last 10 completed singles matches, winning her last three. Guentert is also 3-0 in doubles play, making her 15-6 on the season. Ivanova started the spring season for the Spartans with a perfect 2-0 singles record. Ivanova now boasts a 16-12 singles mark, seeing most of her action this season at No. 3 singles.

Road Warriors
The mileage the team will encompass by the end of the spring season is 13,262 total miles. In that span, one could drive from East Lansing, Mich., to Santa Maria, Brazil, the home of Spartan Head Coach Simone Jardim, and back.

Scouting the Badgers
Wisconsin is led by second-year head coach Brian Fleishman. The Badgers enter the weekend with a 5-10 record this season. Pacing Wisconsin in the No. 1 position is Elizabeth Carpenter, who enters the weekend with 10 wins on the season. Carpenter also partners with Angela Chupa to comprise the No. 1 doubles tandem. Together they are the 35th-ranked tandem by the ITA and are 7-5 on season.

Next Up
The Spartans will return to action on Saturday, April 4, when they travel to State College, Pa., for a match against Penn State at 11 a.m.

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