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2018-19 Wesleyan Women's Tennis Season Preview

Photo courtesy of Claremont-Mudd-Scripps
Photo courtesy of Claremont-Mudd-Scripps

SEASON OUTLOOK:

The Wesleyan University women's tennis team is coming off its best season in program history, in which the Cardinals posted a 14-4 overall record and 7-2 mark in the ultra-competitive NESCAC. Additionally, Wesleyan reached the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division III Championships for the first time ever and finished the year ranked No. 5 in the country.

The Cardinals will enter the 2018-19 season without its No. 1 singles and doubles player from the past four years, as the most accomplished Division III women's tennis player in NCAA history graduated in May. It will be nearly impossible to fill the void left by Eudice Chong '18, a five-time national champion, but the Cardinals are still loaded with talent. Headlining the unit is senior All-American Victoria Yu, an NCAA doubles champion, runner-up and national singles runner-up.

Head Coach Mike Fried enters his seventh season at the helm of both the men's and women's tennis programs. Fried has guided the Cardinals to national prominence with both programs consistently ranked within the top-10 nationally over the past three years. The women's team will open the season at the three-day MIT Invitational beginning Friday, Sept. 14.

MEET THE TEAM:

  • The 2018-19 Cardinals will feature one senior, one junior, four sophomores, and four first-years.
  • Yu, the team's lone senior, will be tasked to lead Wesleyan in Chong's absence. As a sophomore, she captured the NCAA Division III doubles championship and a year later, she reached both the doubles and singles finals where she faced her teammate, Chong. The Texas native finished the season ranked No. 2 nationally in doubles action and No. 4 nationally in singles. She is a three-time doubles All-American, two-time singles All-American, and last year Yu was named an Academic All-American by CoSIDA. Yu is coming off a season in which she went 13-3 in dual match singles play and 17-1 in doubles.
  • Sophomores Polina Kiseleva and Alissa Nakamoto figure to play significant roles in the team's success this year after impressive first-year campaigns. Polina played primarily in the No. 4 slot as a freshman and went 8-3, while Nakamoto saw time in the No. 3, No. 4 and No. 5 spots. Playing mostly in the No. 5 position, she finished the year with an overall singles dual match record of 9-3. The duo was also paired together in doubles action and played in the No. 2 slot last year, racking up an 8-6 record.
  • Fried will also welcome first-years Venia Yeung, Alexis Almy, Megan Tran, and Victoria's sister, Kristina Yu. All four will look to have a major impact this season.

COACHES' THOUGHTS:

  • "We're excited to integrate a big, impactful incoming group with our seasoned returners and to further solidify the program as one of the very best in the country."