The University of Denver women’s tennis team finished its season with a 14-9 overall record, touting a 6-0 record in Summit League Play and collecting both the regular season and conference championship titles.
The No. 1 seed Pioneers made it a dual championship season as they handed No. 3 seed and defending conference champion Fort Wayne a 4-0 setback in the 2014 Summit League Tournament Final April 27 at Colorado Athletic Club Monaco. Because of the win, DU women’s tennis received an automatic berth to the 2014 NCAA Division I Women’s Tennis Championship.
Denver advanced to the conference championship game for the second straight season and for the fourth time since 2008. The Pioneers’ victory marked their first league tournament crown since 2008, when the team captured the Sun Belt Tournament Championship.
DU claimed early momentum in the tourney as it took two of three doubles matches to claim the doubles point. The No. 2 doubles tandem of Maureen Slattery and Caroline Schnell handed Fort Wayne an 8-1 loss before Natalie Dunn and Evy Van Genechten sealed the point with an 8-3 win over IPFW.
The Pioneers continued to carry the play in the singles action as they posted three straight wins to end the match early. Kathryn Hughes got things started for the Pioneers with a 6-0, 6-1 win over Sofia Sorokina at No. 4 and at No. 3 Sonja Radosevic posted a convincing 6-1, 6-1 triumph over Ella Norgren.
Schnell clinched the title for the Pioneers in the No. 2 position with a 6-3, 6-3 result over Fort Wayne’s Miloslava Shustova.
Ranked No. 67, Denver women’s tennis dropped a 4-0 decision in the first round of the 2014 NCAA Women’s Tennis Tournament against No. 20 Rice on May 9 in Waco, Texas.
Seven Pioneers were recognized as members of the Women’s All-League Team, including Derbyshire, Dunn, Hughes, Radosevic, Schnell, Slattery and Van Genechten. Denver boasted the most players of any Summit League team, holding seven of 12 spots. Schnell was also named to The Summit League Tennis Academic All-League Team and Slattery garnered the Division I women’s tennis Rookie of the Year in the Mountain region.
First year head coach Christian Thompson and assistant coach David Loewenthal helped lead Denver to one of its best seasons in program history. The coaching duo will look to continue to improve and grow in 2014–15.