Women’s Tennis: Wildcats end season strong after 25th consecutive berth to NCAA tournament


Daily file photo by Alison Albelda

Women’s tennis ended last season with a 19-6 overall record after playing its 25th consecutive NCAA tournament held in Evanston last spring.

Angeli Mittal, Senior Staffer

Women’s Tennis

Northwestern ended last season strong with a 19-6 record under coach Claire Pollard, marking their best record since the 2017-18 season.

While the Cats’ 25th consecutive qualification for the NCAA tournament was stopped short in 2020 due to COVID-19, the team qualified in Spring 2021, with the first and second round of the tournament held in Evanston. NU dominated its match against Xavier University 4-0 but fell to Texas A&M 2-4.

Last year’s team also advanced to the semifinals in the Big Ten tournament, sweeping Minnesota in the quarterfinals 4-0 but falling to No. 1 seeded Michigan Wolverines 1-4.

The Wildcats will return the entire team from the previous season, including graduate students Julie Byrne, who finished with a 10-8 overall record last year, and Caroline Pozo, who went 12-5.

Also returning is sophomore Maria Shusharina, who was selected to the All-Big Ten team, as well as senior Clarissa Hand, who is currently NU’s highest-ranked singles competitor and won five consecutive doubles matches with her sister, junior Christina Hand.

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