STARKVILLE, Miss. – Five fall tournaments, eleven road tilts and 13 home matches at the A.J. Pitts Tennis Centre highlight the 2014-15 Mississippi State women’s tennis campaign, announced Thursday.
MSU will begin their 41st season of play by traveling to the Mizzou Invite in Kansas City on Sept. 19-21. From there, the Bulldogs will follow up with a trip to Pacific Palasades, Calif., for the Riviera All-American Invite and then to Tucson, Ariz., for the Arizona Invite. The Bulldogs will round out the fall with the ITA Regional Championship and the Roberta Alison Invite, both in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
The Bulldogs will kick off the spring season on Sunday, Jan. 18, with a doubleheader against Alabama State and Jackson State at the Pitts Tennis Centre. The early part of the spring schedule will also include a trip to Hanover, N.H., for the Ivy League Kickoff Weekend, hosted by the Dartmouth Big Green. The Bulldogs will open against Cornell and will close out the weekend against either Brown or Dartmouth.
Following the Ivy League Kickoff, MSU will return home to face UAB, before facing Winthrop and East Tennessee State on the road. The Bulldogs will then round out most of their non-conference schedule with three matches at home against Samford, Middle Tennessee and Alcorn State.
Conference play will begin on the weekend of Feb. 27, as the Bulldogs travel to Vanderbilt and Kentucky. MSU will then return home for their longest homestand of the season, hosting five straight matches, capped off by a doubleheader on Mar. 15 against Alabama and non-conference foe Alabama A&M.
MSU’s other home conference matches include Missouri, Arkansas, Auburn, Texas A&M and LSU. SEC away opponents for State are South Carolina, Florida, Tennessee, Georgia and in-state rival Ole Miss.
The 2015 SEC Championships will take place in Columbia, S.C., on April 15-19.
The 2015 NCAA First and Second Rounds will take place on May 8-10, followed by the 2015 NCAA Championships (Team and Individual) from May 14-25 in Waco, Texas.
The 2014-15 campaign will mark the sixth season under head coach Daryl Greenan. Greenan enters the year with 36 wins, and is fourth on MSU’s all-time career wins list, just behind Libba Birmingham, who attained 39 total wins in her stint from 1978-80.
"We have a young team this year so I am excited to see how we compete in the fall,” said Greenan. “We will learn a lot about our level in our first event in Kansas City in a few weeks. In the meantime, I have been impressed with how the girls have been working so far.”
The Bulldogs are coming off a 2013-14 season where they captured nine wins, highlighted by an upset over 42nd-ranked Tennessee on March 9. The Bulldogs return three players from last season’s campaign, including All-SEC junior and ITA Southern Region Player to Watch Georgiana Patrasc, who finished the season ranked 60th nationally, but peaked at a career high of 56th. Also returning for the Bulldogs is senior Naomi Tran and sophomore Timea Guibe.
MSU will also welcome four new faces to the team, including Martina Frantova, who redshirted as a freshman last season. The Bulldogs’ new signing class includes Jennifer Brown, Louise Ronaldson and Alex Corder.
For more information on Mississippi State women’s tennis and updates, fans can follow the Bulldogs on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram at HailStateWT.