Women’s Tennis 2018 Season Preview
Colonials aim to claim A-10 crown
SERVING FIRST: The George Washington women’s tennis team is set to begin its 2018 season on Saturday when it plays host to Harvard at 2 p.m. at the Southeast Tennis and Learning Center.
FALL FLASHBACK: The Colonials competed in a tough slate of tournaments in the fall to prepare for a spring schedule that includes several teams in the Big 12 and Big 10, as well as opponents ranked inside the top 50 nationally. Maria Siopacha posted a 6-6 record in tournament play and made it to the singles finals at the Bedford Cup back in September. The Limassol, Cyprus, native forced the final round to a tiebreaker, but ultimately came up short to take second place. Marie-Louise Decamps and Victoria Kogan also saw success in the fall, both taking singles consolation titles.
2017 REWIND: GW had a strong season under the direction of first-year head coach Torrie Browning, posting an 11-10 record and notching the most wins in a season since 2013. The Colonials bowed out of the A-10 Championships in the first round of play, but Siopacha finished her first season bearing the Buff and Blue with a team-best 13-7 spring singles record playing as GW’s top competitor.
WHO’S BACK: With a roster that returns seven letter winners, the Colonials will look to use their experience to propel them to new heights this season. Siopacha headlines the returners after she tallied a team-best 23-11 overall singles record and 13-7 mark in spring play in GW’s No. 1 spot. The All-Conference First Team selection also led GW on the doubles court with a 16-13 record overall and 11-8 mark in the spring.
Melis Bayraktaroglu also returns for the Colonials after grabbing All-Conference Second Team honors in 2017. Bayraktaroglu had a stellar freshman campaign with a 17-15 overall singles record and a 9-9 mark in spring play at the Nos. 2-3 positions. In doubles action, the rookie went 14-13 overall and 10-7 in the spring playing primarily at the top of the ladder.
Marie-Louise Decamps will look to close out her decorated career on a high note as a senior this season. The Sao Paulo, Brazil, native ranked second on the team in singles wins (18-15) and registered a 15-14 doubles record playing in the No. 2 spot.
WHO’S NOT: GW graduated a pair of seniors last season in Allison Hansen and Taylor Nederlander. Hansen tallied an overall 4-6 singles record with a 1-2 dual match mark at the Nos. 5-6 spots, while Nederlander registered a 12-19 singles record at the Nos. 4-5 positions and went 4-3 in solo action against A-10 foes.
NEW FACES: The Colonials welcome one newcomer to the program this season, freshman Julia Herlogsson. A native of Gothenburg, Sweden, Herlogsson was ranked as the No. 1 player in her region throughout her years in junior play. She has 10 regional championships titles on her resume and owns both a silver and bronze medal for her doubles play at the Swedish Nationals. This fall, the pre-business administration major posted a 5-5 record in solo action and 6-7 mark in doubles play.
BROWNING’S BULLETS: “Our ultimate goal is to win the A-10 Tournament. However, this is a long season and there are many factors that will contribute to our success. Our program will not be defined by wins or loses. It will be defined by the way we compete together as a team. It will be defined by how we support one another. It will be defined by how we carry ourselves on the court. My only expectation I have of our team is that we lay it out on the line every time we play. I expect us to play with passion and determination in every match. At the end of the day, that's all I can ask for.
This season will be a journey with challenges as well as ups and downs. I truly believe we are in a great place right now with who we are as a team. I truly believe in our team and the program we have become. We are extremely talented and I am very excited for what this spring has in store for us.”
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