LAWRENCE, Kan. — It was a tough finish for the #44 Denver women’s tennis team, who struggled to find their footing against the sharp #14-ranked Kansas Jayhawks, who swept DU, 4-0 in opening round play of the 2019 NCAA Women’s Tennis Tournament. Continue reading DU women’s tennis falls 4-0 in NCAAs to Kansas
You can say many things about the just bumped up to #44 University of Denver women’s tennis team. The team and coaches are very friendly and appreciative of fan support, they work hard and take winter break off to sharpen their game, and they never knock each other down.
But this week another characteristic emerged: edge.
“I think everyone’s really pumped to play Kansas tomorrow,” senior co-captain Bianca Mok said. “I think we’re all ready to get revenge on them for last year.”
The edge really hit a crescendo Monday when the draw was announced for the NCAA tournament. While DU (17-5, 5-0) is relishing the chance to get some payback against the team that knocked them out last year – they also want to know: “where’s the respect?”
DU is the lowly #4 seed in the Lawrence, KS region (the top 16 teams in the national rankings are first and second round hosts). DU, that beat Power Five schools Oregon, Utah, Colorado, Minnesota, and Wisconsin (and took down the dangerous Georgia State in Orlando in humid conditions that much more favored GSU).
To put it in perspective, Alabama State, LIU Brooklyn and North Florida are other #4 seeds in the 64-team tournament. Winthrop is seeded higher than DU and they have zilch in the way of Power Five wins but plenty of crushing defeats against the likes of Longwood and South Carolina-Upstate.
Women hope to equal men’s team’s 2013 historic achievement
No regional #4 seed has ever knocked off a #1 in the women’s NCAA tournament.
And until 2013 no men’s team had either, until Florida was shocked in front of their home fans in Gainesville. The team that upset them: DU.
Alex Clinkenbeard clinched the match to give the Pios the 4-3 victory. “Playing loose, playing hard and ultimately playing for each other was key to winning,” he recalls.
Clinkenbeard, who this month will graduate from medical school at CU, sees a lot of what made his team special in this year’s women’s team: “The women certainly have the firepower to compete and win at this level as they’ve shown in the regular season.” He added: “I’m sure that if they leave it all out there, deeply believe they can win, and play for their teammates then they will make the Pioneer community proud.”
Mok: doubles point is crucial
Mok won’t be playing her last tennis match as a Pio Saturday if DU loses, as she’s already been selected for the singles tournament later this month in Florida. But it would be her last time playing with her close friend and co-captain Arisha Ladhani and other teammates she’s mentored and inspired.
“We need to go out firing and our focus needs to be sharp,” she says when asked what will be most important for the team when they step onto the courts at Rock Chalk Park. She adds winning that first doubles point is crucial to knocking the Jayhawks off their game.
From the fall season to the NCAA tournament courts in Lawrence, Mok says her team is ready to fight: “I think we’re all at our peak.”
Avengers: Endgame isn’t the only big sequel out at the moment.
The NCAA announced its selections Monday afternoon for the 64-team women’s tennis tournament. The #47 University of Denver women’s tennis team (17-5, 5-0) will play Kansas, the team that knocked them out 4-3 in the first round last year.
Things will fire up at 1pm MT Friday. Continue reading Get to ready to rock (and chalk): DU women’s tennis gets NCAA rematch with Kansas
Under warm but windy Tulsa skies it was another sunny result for the University of Denver women’s tennis team. The #1 seeded Pios dispatched the upstart Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks 5-0 to claim their sixth-straight Summit League tournament win.
“We knew we were going to have to come out and play some good tennis. Overall proud of the way we played,” head coach Christian Bass told a Summit League video crew after the dust settled.
It was UNO’s first finals appearance, but they ultimately couldn’t compete with DU’s firepower. Continue reading Six-cess! DU women’s tennis claims Summit League tourney title
It was all Crimson and Gold on day one of the Summit League Championships, as the top-seeded Pioneer women’s tennis team took care of #4 South Dakota 4-0 in the semifinals, setting up a date in Saturday morning’s finals.
Between today’s match and the one against USD a week ago at Denver Tennis Park to close out the regular season, the #47 Pios have beaten the Coyotes by a combined score of 11-0. Continue reading DU women’s tennis dispatches South Dakota in Summit Tournament, will play Omaha in finals Saturday
Fresh off claiming their sixth-straight regular season title, the #47 University of Denver women’s tennis team (15-5, 5-0) heads to Tulsa, OK for the Summit League tournament. And you guessed it, the Pioneers will be seeking their sixth-straight tourney title. Continue reading In the Mix for Six: DU women’s tennis heads to Summit League tournament
“I feel like the luckiest coach in college tennis.”
Those were the direct words of DU women’s tennis coach Christian Bass after the Pios trashed Summit rival South Dakota 7-0, talking about the honor of coaching seniors Bianca Mok, Arisha Ladhani, and Hannah Templeton.
The match under sunny skies at Denver Tennis Park was a footnote, with no Coyote player winning more than 3 games off a Pio opponent. Coach Bass switched her doubles lineup to allow the senior co-captains (and roommates) Mok and Ladhani to play together in doubles in a 6-2 victory.
The #47 Pioneers (15-5, 5-0) are on a two match win streak, and have yet to lose at the new Denver Tennis Park. The win today was a rematch of last year’s Summit League tournament final, where the Pioneers also won with a sweep. Continue reading #Bringtheracquet: DU women’s tennis blasts South Dakota 7-0 on Senior Day
During a heated volley drill sophomore Camille Verden-Anderson slams the ball home with an intense fury.
But then she has to walk away and looks to be in pain. Is she injured?
“I got hair in my eye,” she calls out in her thick English accent.
“You should get hair in your eye more often,” associate head coach David Loewenthal responds with a chuckle.
Coming into their last regular season match the #47 Pioneers (14-5, 5-0) are definitely turning it up a notch, realizing this is not the time to get complacent. As head coach Christian Bass constantly reminds them, the key is to stay aggressive and not take anything for granted. Continue reading #Bringtheracquet: women’s tennis prepares to honor seniors in Friday match vs. South Dakota
In a small-town rec center that apparently once played host to an exhibition match between Bjorn Borg and Rod Laver in the 1970s, DU women’s tennis (14-5, 4-0) put on a show of their own, crushing the Western Illinois Leathernecks 7-0 in Galesburg, IL.
The win keeps the #43 Crimson and Gold perfect in Summit League play and ends a two-match losing streak after two close losses last weekend against Arizona and Arizona State.
Looking to try different things ahead of rapidly-approaching postseason play, the Pioneers tried some different lineups in doubles. The normal #1 dubs team of Bianca Mok and Camille Verden-Anderson was split up. The super-senior Mok played with freshman Toni Nelson, while Verden-Anderson teamed up with fellow sophomore Anna Riedmiller.
“[The] girls took care of business,” associate head coach David Loewenthal said after the victory.
He wasn’t kidding. In the singles, Sophmores Camille Verden-Anderson and Hada Chang both served their opponents “bagel breakfasts,” winning 6-0, 6-0 in the #5 and #6 matches respectively.
The DU coaches also announced that due to a scheduling issue, the Pios match with Wyoming Wednesday has been canceled. That leaves just one regular season match, on Friday against South Dakota (rescheduled from March 16th, when weather prevented USD from making it to Colorado).
The team has a ceremony planned Friday to honor senior co-captains Mok and Arisha Ladhani, as well as Hannah Templeton (who has already completed her degree and is taking graduate courses).
“[The team] is excited and inspired about the upcoming senior week for both Arisha and Bianca, as well as Hannah,” Loewenthal said.
As for the November 1976 battle in tiny Galesburg between the “Rocket” and the “Ice-Borg,” Borg took down the much older Laver 6-4, 4-6 and 6-3. According to a local newspaper, each of the tennis stars were paid $7,500 for their appearance.
Two parts of the state, same result, right down to the other team pouring onto the court to celebrate with DU women’s tennis forced to stand there and watch. Continue reading Late heroics fall short as DU women’s tennis loses to ASU 4-3