Senior Molly Wickman
2014 Fall Schedule
PITTSBURGH – There will be no shortage of top competition for the University of Pittsburgh women’s tennis team this fall as the Panthers play in five top-notch tournaments over the next three months.
“We are extremely excited about our fall schedule. The level of competition at the tournaments we have selected will be high and we are confident that this schedule will best prepare our team to be successful,” head coach Alex Santos said. “Our girls will be seeing players from teams that have been consistently vying for national titles, teams that are currently occupying top spots in the national collegiate rankings, or teams that are fighting for a chance to compete in the NCAA tournament.”
Pitt will immediately face ACC competition when the Panthers travel to Miami, Fla., to participate in the Hurricane Invitational from Sept. 19-21. Miami finished the 2014 season ranked No. 12 in the nation according to the final Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) rankings and advanced to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament.
The Panthers will then partake in the Wildcat Invitational hosted by Northwestern the following weekend. The Wildcats finished last year’s campaign ranked No. 15 in the country.
Heading into October, the Panthers play in the Bulldog Invitational hosted by Yale the weekend of Oct. 10-12, before traveling to Blacksburg, Va., for the ITA Regional Tournament from October 17-20.
The fall season will conclude in early November at the Harvard Invitational in Cambridge, Mass. That tournament is set for Nov. 7-9 and it will serve as the final tune up before the team plays its competition season beginning in late January.
“While we do understand the risk/reward dynamic that is inherent with such a strong schedule, we feel confident and very privileged for the opportunity to play some of the finest players in the country. We believe in the process that we are going through and we want to be competitive in every single one of these events.”
Sophomore Audrey Ann Blakely leads the charge into Pitt’s second season in the ACC and will look to build upon a stellar freshman campaign. Blakely became the first ever Panther to be nationally-ranked in singles and she finished the year with an overall mark of 14-12 in singles and 19-11 in doubles. The Panthers also return seniors Amanda and Molly Wickman who look to end their careers by joining the Century Club. Amanda is currently four wins away from 100 career victories and Molly is 17 shy.