May 8, 2014
CORAL GABLES, Fla. - Riding an eight-match win streak, the Patriot League champion Boston University women's tennis team will open up postseason play against No. 12 Miami in the NCAA First Round on Friday at 2 p.m. at the Neil Schiff Tennis Center.
Guided by 2014 Patriot League Coach of the Year Lesley Sheehan in her 29th season, the Terriers (14-6) qualified for the tournament by winning their first Patriot League title after capturing 22 trophies as a member of the America East. In the title match hosted by Bucknell, they topped the nine-time defending PL champion Army Black Knights, 4-1.
ACC co-regular season champion Miami (19-5) qualified for the NCAA tournament for the 19th straight time with an at-large bid and is hosting the first and second rounds for the 10th consecutive year.
The Hurricanes previously eliminated BU from the NCAAs back in 2006 and 2010 by identical scores of 4-0. They enter Friday's contest featuring three ranked individuals - No. 29 Stephanie Wagner, No. 66 Kelsey Laurente and No. 90 Lina Lileikite. Their doubles play is just as impressive with No. 8 Monique Albuquerque/Clementina Riobueno and No. 40 Kelsey Laurente/Melissa Bolivar leading the charge.
For the Terriers, 2014 Patriot League Player of the Year and PL Tournament MVP Johanna Hyoty went 13-4 in dual action, including 9-2 at No. 1 singles. Fellow sophomore and All-PL First Team honoree Lauren Davis also went 13-4 with an identical 9-2 mark at the No. 2 slot.
Senior Leonie-Charlotte Athanasiadis is the lone Terrier with NCAA tournament experience. Her freshman year, she traveled to Cal for a NCAA first-round match-up against the Golden Bears. An All-PL Second Team member, she is 12-6 at No. 3 singles. Junior Sami Lieb (14-7) is 7-1 at No. 4 singles with freshman Barbara Rodriguez (15-10, 4-1 #5) and sophomore Kim McCallum (15-5, 9-2 #6) rounding out the list.
In doubles, Hyoty and Athanasiadis reached the quarterfinals of the ITA Regionals and are 19-7 together this season. Davis and Rodriguez went 9-11 this season but are 7-4 at No. 2 doubles. McCallum and sophomore Madison Craft make up the other duo with an 8-5 record at the No. 3 slot.
Also coming to Coral Gables for the regional are No. 18 Oklahoma and No. 55 Wichita State. The Sooners, who fell to Texas Tech in the Big 12 Championship, are 16-6 overall this spring. The Missouri Valley Conference champion Shockers come to Coral Gables with a 16-6 record.
First and second round competition features four teams playing in a single-elimination format. The winner of each site advances to the national tournament in Athens, Georgia, where the 16 teams will compete for the national championship on May 15-20.
The Terriers are making their 14th overall NCAA appearance and are 0-13 all-time having to play against a top-15 ranked opponent each time. The Miami-BU and Oklahoma-Wichita State winners will meet up on Saturday (May 11) at 2 p.m.