2008-09 Season Outlook

Warrior tennis vows to return to the NCAA tournament


Wayne State Women's Tennis

Sept. 8, 2008

Wayne State University women's tennis is gearing up for another solid campaign. Last season the Warriors failed to qualify for the NCAA tournament for the first time in four years. Five of the eight players being freshmen, Head Coach Sheila Snyder knew it was going to be a rebuilding year. However, there were promising highlights. Such as when the No. 6 seeded Warriors made a statement in the GLIAC tournament, upsetting No. 3 seed Ashland

In 2008-09 four key freshmen have returned, plus team co-captains Meghan Luzod (Royal Oak, Mich. /Dondero), and Sargam Bhatt (Canton, Mich. /Taylor Truman). This year's squad, with a year of experience under their belt, is eager to qualify for the NCAA tournament once again.

"Our goal for this year is to get to the NCAA Championships," said three-year letterwinner Bhatt. "It's a tradition we need to continue [qualifying for the NCAA tournament]."

Snyder enters her 20th season as the head coach of WSU Women's Tennis. In that time, the WSU four-time letter winner, has garnered 160 wins with a .563 winning percentage. Snyder is optimistic about the opportunity for this tight group of girls to have a successful season.

"We took a lot of freshmen last year," said Snyder. "But they have worked really hard and I know they are enthusiastic about their improvement. Our line-up is pretty deep from one through six now."

The lone senior, Bhatt returns as a team co-captain. As captain last season, she compiled a 12-6 mark in No. 6 singles. She also made the GLIAC All-Academic team. Bhatt holds a 28-17 career singles record, and 26-27 career doubles record.

Luzod is a returning GLIAC All-Academic junior. In the first two years of her career Luzod has won a total of 52 matches, 27 singles and 25 doubles. This season she is stepping up to help shoulder some of the leadership role as co-captain.

"There is more responsibility to lead by example now," said Luzod. "We have a good background together as a team, we know who responds to cheering and who needs to be pushed."

Sharon Gill (Windsor, Ontario/Academie Ste. Cecile) had a standout freshmen year as No. 1 singles and doubles. In her debut season Gill held a record of 20-4 overall, with a 6-3 GLIAC conference record at No. 1 singles. Gill also carries an 11-match singles winning streak into the new season.

Rounding out the rest of the sophomore's are Deby Correa (Belo Horizonte, Brazil/Colegio Padre Eustaquio), Jennifer Bradford (Detroit/Mumford), and Milena Vuksanovic (Pancevo, Serbia/Uros Predic Secondary School). Vuksanovic will play at No. 1 doubles with Gill. Correa and Bradford combined for a record of 20-20 in overall singles, and went 4-2 in doubles together in 07-08.

Newcomers to this year's squad are Freshmen Kristina Goranskaya (Thornhill, Ontario/Northview Heights Secondary School). She helped lead Northview to the 2006 OFSAA National Championship and a second-place finish in 2007. She also won the bonze medal in singles at the 2007 OFSAA championships.

Medha Jha (Troy, Mich./Athens), born in Chandigarh, India, named to the Royal Oak Tribune Dream Team all four years at Athens H.S. reached the state regional finals with a 25-10 record as a sophomore.

The Warriors will start the year off with a non-conference match against NCAA DI Valparaiso on Sept. 6. GLIAC play begins on Sept. 12, when the warriors host Ashland at the Matthaei.

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