April 7, 2011
By Zach Mendelson, Seminoles.com
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Coming off a big 6-1 win last Sunday against Wake Forest, the No. 31 Florida State women’s tennis team (8-7, 3-4) now gets ready for another big weekend on the road against tough ACC competition. The Seminoles will first travel to College Park to play against the No. 26 Maryland Terrapins (12-5, 2-4) on Friday, April 8 at 2:00 p.m. and then two days later against the No. 46 Boston College Eagles (7-10, 2-4) on Sunday at 11:00 a.m. in Chestnut Hill, Ma.
“Boston College and Maryland both have had incredible seasons,” said head coach Jennifer Hyde. “The good thing about our conference is there are no weekends off. Every match is difficult and that is what we want this time of year.”
First up for the Seminoles will be Maryland. Florida State leads the all-time series with a strong 16-2 record. The Seminoles defeated the Terrapins twice last season, with a 7-0 win at home during the regular season to pick up a sixth consecutive ACC win followed by a 4-0 victory during the first round of the ACC Tournament. Overall Florida State has not lost to Maryland since Hyde’s second year with the program in 2006 which they lost in a 4-3 nail biter in College Park.
While the Seminoles have had a lot of previous success against the Terps, they will certainly have a tough challenge ahead of them this season as Maryland brings in one of the top nationally-ranked players in No. 32 Cristina Sanchez-Quintanar who also teams up with Jordaan Sanford to form the nation’s No. 39 doubles tandem.
“Maryland has jumped from being unranked to being one of the top thirty teams in the nation and that hasn’t been the case since I have been at Florida State,” said Hyde. “They are a team with a lot to prove and they are doing a great job this year. Boston College was also ranked in the top thirty at one point this season and they are a dangerous team as well”.
Although the competition is stiff, the Seminoles will rely on the senior leadership of Federica Suess and No. 42 Katie Rybakova who has won five straight matches, including the past three against ITA top 100 opponents. Rybakova will be looking to reach the 100th win of her career win this weekend as she currently sits at 98 victories. Only three Seminoles in the history of the program have reached the 100 win milestone, including Suess and former teammates Lauren McCreless and Jessica Sucupira.
Following the match against Maryland the Seminoles will have a quick turnaround to get ready for Boston College. Florida State holds a 6-0 edge in the all-time series, with the first match happening in 2006 when the Eagles first joined the ACC.
“We are close to the end, so it’s important for us to finish out the regular season and ACC play on a strong note,” said senior Katie Rybakova. “Wake Forest was a big win for us, so I think it’s important for us to keep stepping up and have this weekend be advatangeous for us.”
“We played well on Sunday and it was just a really nice match,” added sophomore Francesca Segarelli. “We all played well as a team, so we have a lot of confidence right now. I know we are all super excited to go Maryland and Boston, so hopefully it will be another good weekend.”
Following this weekend road trip, the Seminoles will come home to get ready to play No. 3 North Carolina on Friday, April 15 in the annual “Paint It Pink” match at 4:00 p.m. and then senior day against the No. 4 Duke on April 17th at 12 p.m. at the Scott Speicher Tennis Courts.