The Thundering Herd recognizes three graduating seniors
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – The Marshall University women’s tennis team will close its regular season with two home matches Saturday against Big East opponents the University of Louisville and University of Pittsburgh. The No. 71 Thundering Herd will face the Cardinals, with first-serve set for 11 a.m.
Marshall will then play Pittsburgh at 4 p.m., with both matches set to be played at the Brian David Fox Tennis Center on Marshall’s campus, weather permitting.
“It is an excellent opportunity to play two Big East teams who are always tough and bring competitive tennis to Huntington,” Marshall’s head coach John Mercer said. “Both matches will have good tennis and it would be exciting to see a lot of Herd fans come out and support the team.”
The Herd enters Saturday’s matches with an 11-10 overall record, while Louisville stands at 8-10 on the season. Pittsburgh is 11-6 so far on the season with one match against Cincinnati Friday afternoon in Cincinnati.
The Herd’s three graduating seniors, Jessica Keener (Reston, Va.), Karolina Soor (Lindesburg, Sweden), and Kellie Schmitt (Pittsburgh, Pa.) will be recognized Saturday for their career accomplishments at Marshall.
“We look forward to honoring the seniors who have had great careers at Marshall,” Coach Mercer added. “The three have had a good showing over the past four years and are excellent role models, examples of student-athletes and representatives of Marshall.”
Keener currently has a place in all six categories in the program record book. She stands 13th in career singles, tied for 16th in career singles percentage, 12th in career doubles, 21st in career doubles percentage, 12th in overall victories, and tied for 18th in combined winning percentage. In addition to the Herd’s record book, Keener has also earned honors off the court. She is a three-time recipient of the ITA All-American Scholar Athlete award, two-time Conference USA All-Academic Team, and the 2007 C-USA academic medal honoree.
“I have had a successful four years at Marshall and it is disappointing that these are my final two matches at home,” Keener said. “I will miss playing tennis at Marshall, but we are going to go after it and go play hard Saturday to finish the regular season with two wins.”
Soor also has had an impressive career at Marshall with many honors. She is currently 11th in career singles, sixth in career doubles, 13th in career doubles percentage, sixth in overall victories, and 15th in combined winning percentage in the Herd’s program record book. Soor also has a place in the single season record books for the past three seasons. She is tied for eighth in single season singles victories with 27 in 2007. Soor is tied for seventh with 31in 2008 and tied at 17th with 27 in 2007 in single season doubles victories. In single season combined victories, Soor is 13th (54) in 2007 and tied for 19th (48) in 2008. Soor has been to the selected C-USA Player of the Week twice so far in her career (April 16, 2008 and April 7, 2009). She has been selected as a two-time second team all-conference C-USA, earned the doubles team all-conference C-USA honor and the double team of C-USA championship accolade following last season. Off the courts, Soor is a two-time recipient of the ITA All-American Scholar athlete award, and 2007 C-USA academic medal honoree.
“I am excited to play in my final matches at Marshall,” Soor said. “We hope to get two wins to finish the regular season to lead into conference play.”
Schmitt has an impressive and extensive resume in her tenure at Marshall. She is at the top of the Herd’s program record books in three of the six categories. She is at the top of the career singles victories (124), career singles percentage (.780%), and career overall victories (230). Schmitt is tied at second with Anna Mitina with 106 career doubles victories, ninth in career doubles winning percentage, and third in combined winning percentage. Schmitt stands at first, second and tied for eighth in single season singles victories. Her 35 victories in 2007 placed her at the top; while her 34 wins last season put her second and 27 victories in 2006 places her tied for eighth. In single season doubles competition, she is tied for ninth with 30 wins last season, tied for 17th with 27 wins in 2007, and tied for 19th with 26 victories in 2006. Schmitt is also tied for second with 64 wins from 2008, fifth with 62 wins in 2007, and 14th with 53 wins from 2006 in the single season combined victories record book. Schmitt has participated in the NCAA tournament for three seasons (2006-2008). She is a two-time recipient of the C-USA Player of the Year honor. Schmitt has been selected C-USA Player of the Month four times and C-USA Player of the Week nine times. She won the C-USA Freshman of the Year award, and a three-time recipient of first team all-conference C-USA honor. She earned the doubles team all-conference C-USA honor last season and has won the doubles team of C-USA championship accolade three times. In the fall of 2008, Schmitt was honored with the Dr. Dorothy Hicks Award for Marshall University Female Athlete of the Year, as well as the 2008 ITA East Region Player-to-Watch.
“Honestly, I haven’t thought much about senior day Saturday,” Schmitt said. “But, it is going to be exciting to play my final matches at Marshall and I hope we have a large crowd to cheer us on to two great wins.”
Schmitt, ranked 76th, leads the Herd with an 18-3 singles record at the No. 1 position. Isabell Raich (Klaus, Austria) stands at 9-10, while Soor is 12-8 so far this season.
Also in singles play, Deanna Bailey (McDonough, Ga.) stands at 8-9, Keeneris 10-9, and Catherine Kellner (Smithtown, N.Y.) stands at 15-5.
The Herd and Cardinals have met six times in school history with Marshall leading the all-time series, 4-2. Marshall defeated Louisville, 5-2, in Kentucky last season.
Marshall leads the all-time series with Pittsburgh, 10-0. The Herd swept the Panther last season, 7-0, in Huntington.
The Herd is 3-4 at home, 7-5 away, and 1-1 at neutral sites so far this season.
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