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Women's tennis opens season versus NAU and UC Davis

January 22, 2009

The Arizona State Sun Devils will begin their spring 2009 duel season this weekend as they do battle with the NAU Lumberjacks on Saturday, January 24 and then face-off with the UC Davis Aggies on Sunday, January 25. Both games begin at 11a.m. in Tempe at ASU's Whiteman Tennis Center.

The Devils wrapped up their tournament season last weekend in Las Vegas at the Freeman Memorial Championship, which saw dynamic duo Micaela Hein and Kelcy McKenna upset the No. 3 nationally ranked pair Lenka Broosova and Csilla Borsanyi of Baylor 8-3. Arizona State also had a successful singles showing as Hein upset No. 19 Taylor Ormond of Baylor.

About the Teams

Coming off a successful 2008 season that saw them finish 15-8 overall and 7-1 in Big Sky Conference play the `Jacks roll in to Tempe ranked second in a BSC pre-season poll. The Aggies will come in confident after winning their season opener 6-1 in Oregon against Portland on January 18.

Series History

The Devils now seek to repeat their years of home-opener success against in-state rivals NAU and west coast foes UC Davis. Under Head Coach Sheila McInerney's reign, the Devils have never lost an opening duel match. In their fifth meeting with the Aggies, the Devils will seek to uphold their flawless performance: ASU has won every meeting against UC Davis and allowed only two points. Three of the wins, in 2005, 2006 and 2008 saw the Devils shutout their opponent 7-0. In 2007 they topped the Aggies 5-2. ASU is 10-0 all-time versus the `Jacks and has outscored them 73-1 allowing NAU their first and only point in their last meeting on January 21, 2008 in Tempe.

Up Next

The Sun Devils will travel to Atlanta, Ga. to take on their first ranked opponents of the season, No. 20 Florida State on Saturday, January 31 at 9 a.m. followed by No. 8 Georgia Tech and No. 25 TCU on Sunday, February 1. Play begins at 9 a.m. against the Yellow Jackets and continues at 2:30 p.m. with a matchup against the Horned Frogs.

Legends of the Fall

The Fall 2008 season saw ASU dominating competition at the Cal Nike Invitational, where sophomore Kelcy McKenna took home the ITA Singles Gold crown as well as the ITA Doubles Gold title with teammate Micaela Hein. ASU also collected its third ITA All-American in two years with McKenna.

Double Duty

The 2009 season will see exciting doubles action from Arizona State, with the return of partners Micaela Hein and Kelcy McKenna, who finished with an impressive 17-4 overall record in 2008. Senior Laila Abdala will also pair up for a final season with her sister, junior Nadia Abdala. The sisters will be in quest of success after posting 10 wins last season.

To Be the Best...

The Sun Devils have traditionally played one of the most rigorous schedules in the nation and this season will be no different. The team will be tested with a mixture of strong non-conference play and strenuous Pac-10 matchups, including back-to-back matchups with No. 10 USC and No. 3 UCLA.

Where They Stack Up

Last year, the Sun Devils finished the season ranked at No. 23 posting a 15-8 overall record, a fourth place conference finish and making it to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Arizona State is currently ranked 21st with four returning letter winners and powerhouse Kelcy McKenna, currently No. 3 in the nation.

At The Helm

Coach Sheila McInerney enters her 25th season at the helm of the Sun Devil program. In 2008, she led the team to a university record 21st consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance following a winning 15-8 season. Those wins saw ASU upset NCAA Champion UCLA, as well as conquer Stanford for the first time in program history.