Iowa Hosts No. 59 Illinois, No. 37 Northwestern

The University of Iowa women’s tennis team returns home entertaining No. 59 Illinois on Friday at 3 p.m. and No. 37 Northwestern on Sunday at 11 a.m. Iowa enters this weekend playing two more ranked opponents, having played seven of its last ten matches against ranked foes. Home matches are contested at the Hawkeye Tennis & Recreation Complex, and admission is always free.

Fans can follow both matches via the live scoring and streaming links on the Iowa women’s tennis schedule page at Sunday’s match against the Wildcats will be included in the Cracked Racquets Big Ten CrossCourt Cast:

Iowa enters the weekend with a 4-11 record, with seven of its defeats coming against ranked opponents. The Hawkeyes suffered a pair of road losses last weekend, one being to a ranked No. 71 Purdue. The Hawkeyes rallied against Indiana, but ultimately came up short. Iowa recorded three singles wins over the Hoosiers. Barbora Pokorna won in straight sets at No. 4, Vipasha Mehra battled in three sets to secure the win on court six, and Marisa Schmidt came out on top at No. 1 to close out the match against Indiana. Pokorna and Michelle Bacalla also recorded a doubles win over the Hoosiers.

Iowa captured the first singles point against the Boilermakers. Mehra topped Nathalia Wolf Gasparin in straight sets, 6-1, 6-3, on court six. Mehra is currently on a three-match win streak with singles wins against Purdue, Indiana, and Penn State. The duo of Samantha Mannix and Pokorna competed for the first time together in doubles and came away with a win against Purdue.

Barbora Pokorna leads the Hawkeyes with an 8-3 record at the No. 4, No. 5 and No. 6 spots. Pokorna recorded back-to-back wins against Penn State’s Karly Friedland in three sets, 3-6, 6-3, 7-6(5), and Indiana’s Mila Mejic in straight sets, 7-5, 6-3.

Pokorna has won her past three doubles matches, recording a pair of wins last weekend, improving her doubles record to 7-5. Pokorna and Michelle Bacalla defeated Penn State’s Lasorda/Lebedevato and Indiana’s Kubas/Hu to improve their record on court three to 6-3 (6-4 overall). Pokorna most recently competed with Samantha Mannix for the first time, and they defeated Purdue’s Galindo/Milic, 6-1, starting off their doubles record at 1-0.

• Illinois is 10-6 overall and 3-1 in conference play – their lone conference setback came to No. 50 Wisconsin.
• Iowa has an overall record of 25-29 against Illinois.
• Iowa’s last win against Illinois came in 2013.
• Illinois is ranked No. 59 in the ITA Collegiate Tennis Rankings.
• Illinois has no student-athletes ranked in the ITA Singles or Doubles Tennis Rankings.

• Northwestern is 9-5 overall and a perfect 4-0 in conference play, defeating No. 55 Minnesota and No. 50 Wisconsin.
• The Wildcats are 1-4 away from Evanston.
• Northwestern is ranked No. 37 in the ITA Collegiate Tennis Rankings.
• Clarissa Hand is ranked No. 106 in the ITA Singles Tennis Rankings.
• The Wildcats have no student-athletes ranked in the ITA Doubles Tennis Rankings.
• Iowa is 2-46 all-time against Northwestern, last topping them in 1992.

The University of Iowa has been selected to host the 2022 Big Ten Women’s Tennis Championships. The event will take place April 27 through May 1 at the Hawkeye Tennis & Recreation Complex. The last time Iowa hosted the conference tournament was 2010.

Fans can follow the Iowa women’s tennis team on Facebook and via Twitter @Iowa_Tennis. Results from each match is available on the Iowa women’s tennis schedule page at

Sophomore Alexa Noel is ranked No. 4 in the latest Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s national rankings. Noel is currently out indefinitely due to injury. The rankings are a result of individual competition that took place last fall and this spring. Noel has been ranked as high as No. 3, which is the highest ranking of any player in program history. The Summit, New Jersey, native won seven matches in the fall, including notching a win over both the No. 1 and No. 2 ranked players in the nation.