Women’s tennis will travel to Texas; face three universities



By Laura Hettiger

Many college students on spring break usually head somewhere with warm weather, enjoy time with friends and escape from the stress of college life.

For the Fighting Illini women’s tennis team, this spring break will have all of these elements – except they will be trying to win four tennis matches in the process.

With a 12-day vacation from playing in dual matches, the Illini will travel to the Lone Star state to take on three different universities: the University of Houston, the University of Texas and Texas at San Antonio.

“We have been so fortunate with this beautiful weather we’ve been having lately, we’ve been able to practice outside for almost a full week now,” head coach Michelle Dasso said. “And this is going to play a huge role in easing our transition to outdoor match play. Up to this point we have had so many home matches this semester that I think all the girls are looking forward to traveling and taking on the state of Texas.”

After coming off an impressive 6-1 win against in-state foe Illinois State, the Illini’s confidence is high as they have prepared for a busy spring break. These upcoming matches will mark the start of outdoor tennis, something that the recent warm weather has helped the players in preparing for their trip.

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    “We are looking forward to seeing how we stack up in moving to outdoor matches,” Dasso said.

    Illinois’ first opponent, the University of Houston, is coming off a big win against Central Arkansas, as the Cougars defeated their opponent easily in a 7-0 decision, snapping a two-game losing streak.

    Currently, Houston is 10-5 on the year and will not play until they face Illinois on Monday.

    The Texas Longhorns will be Illinois’ challenger on Wednesday, when the Illini move from Houston to Austin to continue their tour of Texas.

    The Longhorns are presently in a four-game losing streak and have a 5-6 record on the year. Ending the long road trip, Illinois will face its final Texan opponent on March 22, when they take on the 7-3 San Antonio Roadrunners.

    Once the players finish in Texas, they will come back to the University of Illinois campus to prepare for their Big Ten opponents.

    “At the tail end of our break, we finish off with a home match versus Michigan State,” Dasso said. “Anytime you have a chance to play another Big Ten opponent at home is a positive.”

    The Spartans will travel to Urbana on March 25 for a noon match against the Illini.