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Forget Danny Waldman, Kevin Shaw, and Dave Fish for a minute. The odds are pretty good that if you journey down to the Soldiers Field courts this spring you'll get your coupon book's worth watching the Radcliffe tennis team.
The raquetwomen, coming off impressive records last spring (10-1) and this fall (7-2), hope to reap even greater success this spring against their formidable competition in the Ivy-Seven Sisters League.
The squad is currently boning up for its Southern trip, which begins this Friday. Coach Corey Wynn's team will play six matches during the week in Virginia and North Carolina, against The Country Club of Virginia, The Westwood Racquet Club (Va.), Mary Baldwin College, Virginia Polytechnical Institute, Davidson College (N.C.), and the University of North Carolina-Greensboro.
The Dixieland matches won't count on the regular schedule, but should provide an important warmup for the April and May matches up north. Coach Wynn is already confident. He says, "We're definitely stronger than last year. How close we'll be to the top of our league remains to be seen."
Depth is the team's strong suit. Wynn will take seven of his players South, but as of now only five are definites. Sally Roberts, number one last fall, leads a field which includes Captain Denise Thal, freshmen Katie Ditzler and Patty Wen, and Janet Clark.
Fighting it out for the final two spots are Terry Clarke, Lisa Dixon, Ginny St. Gore, Joan Gumowitz, and Perry Heffelfinger. Bad backs have temporarily slowed Rita Funaro and Diana Olney from making the trip, but Wynn says, "They'll both be ready when the regular season begins."
A quick glance at the roster would lead one to believe that the loss of Lissa Muscatine, Andy Okamura, and Katherine Fulton would hurt the chances of the women in white for a successful season. But overall improvement down the ranks, and strong play by the freshmen (notably Ditzler and Wen), have more than compensated.
It's no secret that Yale and Princeton are the class in the Ivy-Seven Sisters League, but as Wynn points out, "Since we don't play Princeton, the Yale match the first week we get back will be the real test of how well we'll finish this season."
The Southern trip is first, though, and the chances are that Radcliffe will don its General Sherman outfit and devastate its early season competition.
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