Men's Tennis Hosts Saturday Doubleheader
Williamsburg - After suffering its first loss of the season at No. 1 Virginia, the No. 75 William and Mary menís tennis team returns home to host its third doubleheader of the dual-match season on Saturday, Jan. 22. The Green and Gold will start things off against No. 36 Notre Dame at 11 a.m. at the McCormack-Nagelsen Tennis Center, before welcoming another BIG EAST foe in Villanova to Williamsburg at 5 p.m.
W&M opened the season with four straight wins for the third consecutive season, tallying doubleheader sweeps of Winthrop (6-1) and Richmond (7-0) as well as James Madison (6-1) and Morgan State (7-0). Playing in an alternative-scoring match, the Tribe suffered a 12-1 setback at No. 1-ranked Virginia on Tuesday. Junior Jacob Braig and freshman John Banks tallied the lone Tribe win with a victory at the No. 5 doubles position.
Notre Dame opens its dual-match season against the Tribe. The two teams are familiar with one another as the Irish played in the Tribe Invitational during the fall season. Last season, Notre Dame pulled out a narrow 4-3 win over the Tribe in South Bend. The Irish lineup features four nationally ranked singles players and a pair of doubles team in the national rankings. Stephen Havens leads the way at No. 71 in the country followed by Casey Watt (No. 104), Billy Pecor (No. 116) and Tyler Davis (No. 122). Havens and Davis are ranked No. 47 nationally in doubles followed by Ryan Bandy and Sean Tan at No. 58.
Villanova will open the dual-match season against Old Dominion on Saturday at 9 a.m., before making the trek down to Williamsburg for the 5 p.m. match. It will mark the second straight season that the Tribe and Wildcats have squared off as the Green and Gold recorded a 6-1 win at the McCormack-Nagelsen Tennis Center a season ago. Villanova finished the 2010 campaign at 5-20, but advanced to the BIG EAST quarterfinals before falling to Louisville.
Following the BIG EAST doubleheader, W&M will travel to No. 4 Ohio State to take part in the ITA Kick-off Weekend. The Tribe will face the Buckeyes at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 29, before battling either No. 55 UC-Irvine or No. 56 South Carolina on Sunday, Jan. 30. The winner of the regional event will advance to the ITA National Team Indoor Championship, Feb. 18-21, in Seattle, Wash.