The Lady Bears will face two top-25 teams this weekend
WACO, Texas – Baylor’s 19th-ranked women’s tennis team will hit the road to face a pair of top-25 opponents. The Lady Bears are slated to take on 22nd-ranked Notre Dame on Saturday at 9 a.m. CT, and then ninth-ranked Northwestern at 11 a.m. CT on Sunday.
“Any time you’re building a team with new players in your lineup, every match is an opportunity to learn something, get better, and gain some confidence,” head coach Joey Scrivano said. “This weekend won’t be any different. We’ve had some great matches with Notre Dame and Northwestern in the past, and we don’t expect anything to change with these matches. It’s good for a team in our position to play on the road against quality opponents.”
Baylor, now 4-5 on the season, enters the road trip following a 6-1 victory over 46th-ranked Pepperdine. During the match, BU was able to secure the doubles point for the first time in six matches, and now holds a 7-13 overall mark in doubles. Ema Burgic and Victoria Kisialeva are currently the most successful doubles pairing with a 3-1 record.
In singles action, the Lady Bears were able to earn wins on five out of six courts against Pepperdine. Overall, the team is 25-23 in singles contests, with the 13th-ranked Burgic holding a 7-2 record at the top spot for Baylor. Megan Horter is also ranked for BU at No. 86, while Burgic partners with Jordaan Sanford to be ranked No. 41.
Notre Dame (5-3) recently lost to Northwestern in a 5-2 decision in Evanston, Ill. The Fighting Irish are led by 74th-ranked Britney Sanders. Sanders also teams with Julie Sabacinski to be ranked No. 30 in doubles. Notre Dame’s other ranked pair is Molly O'Koniewski and Jennifer Kellner at No. 59.
The Irish have lost two matches in a row, but are 3-1 at home this season.
Baylor is 5-4 all-time against Notre Dame. The last time these two teams met, the Lady Bears came out with a 4-2 win on March 4, 2012.
Northwestern (5-3) enters the weekend having lost three of its last five, but the Wildcats did get the win over Notre Dame in their last match out.
Northwestern will host Texas on Friday, before welcoming the Lady Bears to the Combe Tennis Center on Sunday.
Northwestern’s lineup boasts two ranked singles players: No. 41 Kate Turvy and No. 83 Belinda Niu. Both are a combined 5-3 in the second and third positions. Linda Abu Mushrefova and Nida Hamilton are ranked No. 15 in doubles.
Overall, Baylor is 3-3 all-time against Northwestern in a series that dates back to 2001. The last meeting between these two teams was a 4-3 BU victory on Feb. 25, 2008.
After this weekend, Baylor will continue their five-match road trip at Texas A&M on Feb. 27 at 4 p.m.