NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Vanderbilt women’s tennis team returns to Southeastern Conference play this weekend as they host No. 23 Arkansas and No. 70 LSU in a pair of crucial home matches at the Brownlee O. Currey Jr. Tennis Center. The Commodores will open its homestand at 2:30 p.m. Friday when it faces Arkansas. Vanderbilt will then close out the weekend with a match against LSU starting at noon on Sunday.
The Commodores (9-8, 4-4 SEC) will look to get back on the winning track this weekend after falling to No. 3 Florida and No. 19 South Carolina on the road last weekend. Vanderbilt has three players with at least nine victories in singles, led by Catherine Newman and Chelsea Preeg with 11. VU’s Hannah Blatt will put her team-best 6-1 conference record on the line this weekend while Newman will look for her eighth win against a ranked opponent this spring.
With a conference record of 4-4, Vanderbilt now gets the chance to play its final three matches of the season at the friendly confines of the Currey Tennis Center. After hosting Arkansas and LSU this weekend, the ‘Dores will conclude its home slate with a match against Kentucky at 5 p.m. on Friday, April 16.
All-Time Series vs. Arkansas Vanderbilt leads the all-time series with Arkansas 17-5. The series began in 1983. In the most recent meeting between the two school’s the Razorbacks edged the Commodores, 4-3 in Fayetteville on March 15, 2009.
All-Time Series vs. LSU Vanderbilt leads the all-time series with LSU 18-14. The Commodores have won 15 of the last 16 meetings and are 14-1 against LSU under current head coach Geoff Macdonald. Last year’s meeting was cancelled due to rain and was never made up.
A Closer Look at Arkansas Arkansas (14-7, 4-4 SEC) arrives to Nashville riding a two-match winning streak, coming off a pair of 6-1 wins over Alabama and Auburn in Fayetteville. The Razorbacks currently stand in second place in the SEC West. The Hogs are led in singles by No. 65 Anouk Tigu and 115th-ranked Kate Lukomskaya. Throughout the spring, Arkansas has been led in doubles by the nation’s 39th-ranked team pf Claudine Paulson and Tigu.
A Closer Look at LSU LSU (8-12, 3-5 SEC) started conference play 1-5 but as of late the Lady Tigers are playing its best tennis of the season. Fresh off a weekend sweep of Alabama (W, 5-2) and Auburn (W, 5-2), LSU is led by sophomore Whitney Wolf and the freshman duo of Kaitlin Burns and Keri Frankenberger. Burns and Frankenberger lead the team in singles wins with 11, while the tandem of Wolf and Frankenberger lead the team in doubles. The Lady Tigers will travel to Lexington, Ky., to face Kentucky (2-16, 0-8 SEC) on Friday before arriving to Nashville to face Vanderbilt on Sunday.
Live Stats of both of Vanderbilt’s matches this weekend will be available on vucommodores.com. Click the link at the top of the page to follow the action live.