Geoff McDonald is now in his 25th year as Vanderbilt head women’s tennis coach and has posted a remarkable resume at VU. McDonald has taken all of his previous 24 teams to the NCAA Tournament. He has taken his teams to 19 Sweet 16’s, 5 Elite 8’s and 5 Final Fours with a national championship in 2015. This year’s team is 5-3 presently and is ranked 6th in the country. No.1 singles player, senior Fernanda Contreras, is ranked 3rd in the country. Junior Christina Rosca is ranked 9th. Sophomore Amanda Meyer is ranked 37th.
It’s a team that posted a 3.75 GPA in the fall. This team has all the tools to excel. We defeated No. 16 California on the west coast last Friday before falling to No.4 Stanford in the Bay Area last Saturday. Our 2 other losses, were very hard fought contests to No.1 UNC and No.2 Georgia, matches that could have gone either way. We open SEC play in another highly talented and exceptional conference season facing No.39 Missouri (10-1) at today 3:30 PM at the Currey Tennis Center on campus. Sunday, we square off with No.41 Arkansas (7-4) at 1 PM CT at Currey Tennis Center as well. Both matches will be streamed on vucommodores.com.
The team is once again loaded under McDonald. Like all great coaches, McDonald is not as focused on long term outcomes as he is on the journey, the process of getting there. His teams always peak in March and April and this team looks to have the talent and heart to do that as well.
Geoff told me that Astra Sharma, former Vanderbilt great, who reached the Finals of the Australian Open in mixed doubles before falling in a highly competitive match, is presently working to qualify for the French Open, which she will set her sights on in March and April to qualify for Roland Garros, which will be played May 26th-June 9th. Astra will also work towards qualifying in May and June for the Championships at Wimbledon. Wimbledon will be held July 1st-14th. So exciting stuff from Astra along this year’s team.
Will keep you posted on the women’s progress throughout the spring starting this weekend.
Geoff is excited about this group and their prospects for a possible elite season once again.