Boilers Face Waves in Malibu Showdown

Women's tennis travels to Pepperdine.

March 11, 1998

MALIBU, Calif. -- Somewhere in this country the weather is warm, and the Purdue women's tennis team is there. The Boilermakers are in southern California on a spring break practice trip on which they will play a match against 14th-ranked Pepperdine on March 12.

Purdue brings a 3-4 (1-1 Big Ten) record into the contest, but the Boilermakers are coming off a monumental 4-3 upset over then-No. 22 Northwestern on March 1 in Evanston. That was Purdue's first victory ever over the Wildcats in 22 attempts.

The win over Northwestern made history and bumped Purdue up nine spots in the national rankings to 41st. The Boilers are hoping that more history can be made when they take the court against the Waves.

"We hope to give Pepperdine a whale of a match and possibly come away with an upset," says Purdue coach Mat Iandolo.

Pepperdine, which is 9-4 coming off a 7-2 win over Michigan, boasts an impressive two players in the nation's top 50 and a doubles team in the top five. Karoline Borgerson ranks 31st with an 8-5 overall record (5-1 at No. 3). Angela Lawrence, ranked 45th, owns a team-best nine overall wins (7-2 at No. 2). The duo of Zsofia Csapo and Lawrence rank fifth and are 10-2 this season.

To combat that firepower, Purdue will need strong play throughout its lineup. Senior Mary Beth Maggart will have the honor of playing Csapo at the No. 1 singles position. The two met previously in October of 1996 at the Arizona State Invitational, where Csapo emerged with a 6-2, 4-6, 6-2 victory.

Sophomore Jennifer Embry will face Lawrence at the No. 2 position. Despite the tough task, Embry looks to break a two-match losing skid and come away with the biggest win of her career to date.

Freshman Erika Quebe, who is 4-3 at the No. 3 spot this season, will meet up with Borgerson in one of her most difficult tests this year. Sophomore Shannon Taheny will face Anh Nguyen, one of only two Americans on Pepperdine's nine-woman roster. Nguyen is 8-5 overall, and 4-2 at the No. 4 position. Rookie Lisa Walgenbach will see Nadine Rastetter, who is undefeated (6-0) at No. 5 singles. Senior Hally Cohen, who anchors Purdue's lineup, will match up against Annabel Rognon. Rognon is 6-1 at No. 6 this season.

The doubles point could be vital for the Boilermakers. The No. 1 match will feature 25th-ranked Maggart and Embry against fifth-ranked Csapo and Lawrence. Quebe and Taheny will handle duties in the No. 2 slot, while Walgenbach and junior Katy Moran play at No. 3.

The win over Northwestern has brought confidence and drive to this young Boilermaker squad, but Purdue's climb to the top is not complete.

"We are very pleased to move up in the rankings," says Iandolo. "It says a lot about our program to be ranked solidly, well inside in the top 50. And we feel like we can go even higher.

"We've had a very good week of practice in very good weather. The spring trip has been a success to this point. We hope we can take care of business against Pepperdine and make it an overwhelming success."