The Sweet Briar tennis team will begin the 2009 spring season with their first match on Saturday February 21 at Salem College (1-0) in Winston-Salem, NC. The following day, the Vixens will take on Greensboro College (0-1) in at Bur-Mil Park in Greensboro. The Sweet Briar tennis home opener is scheduled for Friday February 27 against Washington and Lee University.
This is the first conference season for head coach Teresa Boylan, who came on board to Sweet Briar prior to the fall season. With the pre-season polls recently released for the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC), the team is voted by the conference coaches to place somewhere in the middle of the ODAC pack.
The pre-season perspective from coach Boylan, she states that “given the ODAC results from the previous year for all the teams, I feel that we have many opportunities to improve on our head-to-head team results as well as our placement at the conference tournament. We have worked hard and will continue to work hard at achieving player’s individual and team goals throughout the season. With strength and experience in our returning players, and the new talent that our first-year players bring, we are definitely on the right track to building a competitive program. I have a great team to work with, and I believe we are all on the same page for wanting to achieve our goals. Clearly, everyone will have their hands full with Washington and Lee University, who has really proven themselves to be worthy of the unanimous vote of top seed. As we work our way through each match, I’m sure we will learn much about each conference team’s strengths and weaknesses, as well as what we will need to emphasize to win as a team. I am looking forward to the challenge, and I know my players are as well.”
Returning players are seniors Stephanie Nance (Moneta, Va.) and Rachel Sullivan (McLean, Va.). Junior team members are Virginia Edahl (Charlotte, NC) and Leslie Polaski (Amherst, Va.). Ebie Baker and Jessica Draper, both sophomores from Farmville, Va. return to the court and will occasionally pair up for some doubles throughout the season. Incoming first-year players include Krista Maldonado (Ennis, Texas), Ellen Reid (Germanton, NC), and Willis Blair (Richmond, Va.). The team is quite versatile up and down the line-up and the team is working hard to have success in both singles and doubles areas of the matches.
2009 ODAC Women’s Tennis Preseason Poll
(#) Denotes first place votes
1. Washington and Lee (11) 121 pts.
2. Bridgewater 103 pts.
3. Hollins 96 pts.
4. Virginia Wesleyan 94 pts.
5. Roanoke 65 pts.
6. Emory & Henry 58 pts.
7. Sweet Briar 51 pts.
8. Randolph-Macon 49 pts.
9. Guilford 41 pts.
10. Lynchburg 35 pts.
11. Randolph 13 pts.