|Mary Beth Maggart won two matches today at the Rolex Championships. (file photo)|
Maggart Keeps Hopes Alive for Regional Title
MADISON, Wis. - Mary Beth Maggart, a senior on the Purdue women's tennis team, won two matches in the I.T.A./Rolex Region IV Championship tournament in Madison, Wis., today. Maggart, the third seed in the tournament, defeated Indiana State's Kathy Najbert 6-4, 6-0 in the first round, then rallied to beat Michigan's Erryn Weggenman 3-6, 6-3, 6-3 to advance to the round of 16.
"Mary Beth played very well today, and it was nice to see her be able to come back from a set down to win," Purdue coach Mat Iandolo said. "She is such a tough player and she knows how to win. She could go very far in this tournament." Maggart went very far in the Regional Championships last year, advancing to the semifinals before bowing to the eventual champion, Melissa Zimpfer of Wisconsin. Zimpfer has since graduated, but Maggart will face another Badger in third round action tomorrow.
The Boiler's next match is against Tracy Zobrist of Wisconsin at 10:30 a.m. "Zobrist is a tough, gritty player," Iandolo said. "But if Mary Beth keeps her focus and plays smart, there is no question that she can win."
Four other Boilermakers competed in the tournament, which features the top 64 singles players and top 32 doubles teams in the Midwest. Freshman Erika Quebe won her first-round match against Karen Black of Evansville 6-3, 7-5, but lost to 6-2, 6-2 to Northwestern's Katherine Nasser, the 1997 Big Ten Freshman-of-the-Year. Sophomores Jennifer Embry and Shannon Taheny both lost opening round matches, as did freshman Lisa Walgenbach. Embry lost a hard-fought, three set affair to Ohio State's Brianna Harris 6-4, 4-6, 7-6. Walgenbach fell to Eastern Michigan's Jean Kansuthi 6-0, 6-1. Taheny dropped a three set decision to Minnesota's Alice Rangsithienchai, 2-6, 6-1, 7-5. Taheny rebounded, however, with a 6-0, 6-1 win over Darcy Poulos of Ball State in the back draw.
In addition to Maggart's quest for a singles title, Purdue has two doubles teams that will begin their search for a title and automatic bid to the I.T.A./Rolex National Indoor Championships in Dallas on Feb. 5-8. Maggart will team up with Embry against Hanson and Kuruvilla of Drake, while Quebe and Taheny will take on the winner of the Rangsithienchai/Sauska (Minnesota) vs. Baker/Schultz (Western Illinois) match. Both Boilermaker doubles teams received first round byes.