Four Big Ten Teams to Compete at NCAA Championships

Northwestern's Maria Mosolova is the Big Ten's automatic qualifier for the second straight season and this year's No. 1 overall seed.

Northwestern's Maria Mosolova is the Big Ten's automatic qualifier for the second straight season and this year's No. 1 overall seed.

May 7, 2009

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Four Big Ten teams will compete in the 2009 NCAA Division I Women's Tennis Championships beginning this weekend with first and second round action taking place May 8-10 at various sites. 

Illinois, Michigan, Northwestern and Ohio State will all be competing in this year's event.  Along with these four squads, five Big Ten student-athletes were selected as singles and doubles participants in the tournament, all hailing from top-ranked Northwestern. 

Big Ten Tournament Champion Northwestern earned the overall No. 1 seed in this year's bracket and will battle Miami (Ohio) on Friday in first-round action in front of a home crowd in Evanston, Ill.  With an ITA Indoor Team Championship and a Big Ten title to their name, the Wildcats (25-1) will look to continue their streak of seven straight shutouts against the RedHawks (16-6). This is the 14th consecutive year that NU has earned its way into the NCAA Championships.  

Ohio State will join Northwestern at the Christine Tennis Center. The Buckeyes (15-10) finished fourth in the Big Ten standings and will look to play Kentucky (12-10) on Friday.

Michigan is making its 8th straight appearance in the NCAA Championships. The Wolverines (17-6) finished second in the Big Ten Tournament and will travel to Notre Dame, Ind., to face Sacramento State (19-8) on Friday. 

Illinois (18-7) will play host to Vanderbilt (11-8) in Champaign, Ill., on Saturday to open tournament play.  This year marks the eighth NCAA Championships berth for the Illini, who finished third in the Big Ten standings.

In the singles portion of the championships, Northwestern's Maria Mosolova is the Big Ten's automatic qualifier for the second straight season and this year's No. 1 overall seed.  Joining her in the singles bracket are two fellow Wildcats, Samantha Murray and Georgia Rose

In doubles, Northwestern's Rose and Lauren Lui are the conference's automatic qualifying duo.  Joining them in the field of at-large selections is the Wildcat tandem of Mosolova and Keri Robison

In addition, two Big Ten student-athletes were chosen as alternates for the championships in both singles and doubles.  Among the eight Division I athletes to be named alternates for singles play is Michigan's Chisako Sugiyama. The Wolverine senior was also selected as an alternate for doubles competition along with teammate Tania Mahtani.