A New Challenge

Commodores set to open 13-match conference slate against LSU

No. 15 Vanderbilt Commodores (8-0)
No. 23 LSU Tigers

Feb. 22, 2021 • Noon CT

A New Challenge

  • Opening a new portion of the 2021 schedule, No. 9 Vanderbilt will welcome No. 23 LSU to Currey Tennis Center on Monday afternoon at noon for the SEC opener.
  • Due to COVID-19 protocols and social distancing guidelines, fans are not permitted to attend this weekend’s matches at Currey Tennis Center.
  • Fans can follow the match via live stream, live scoring or on Twitter by following @VandyWTennis.

A New Course

  • Vanderbilt’s opening weekend of SEC play has seen two alterations.
  • First, its opener against LSU was initially scheduled for Thursday but postponed by winter weather to Monday.
  • Its new SEC opener, a Saturday match against No. 21 Texas A&M, was postponed on Thursday evening due to COVID-19 within the Aggies’ program.
  • Now, Vanderbilt’s SEC opener reshifts to LSU four days later originally than anticipated.

ITA Rankings

  • In the newest release of the Oracle/ITA rankings, Vanderbilt is currently ranked No. 9 in the country. The Commodores moved up from No. 15 this week after defeats of Louisville and formerly No. 9 Georgia Tech.
  • A pair of SEC programs find their spot in the top 10 this week with Vandy at No. 9 and Georgia at No. 5.
  • This week’s opponent is also inside the top 25 with LSU checking in at No. 23 after receiving votes the previous week.
  • In addition to the team ranking, fifth-year senior Christina Rosca opened the season ranked No. 20 in the national singles poll. The spot makes her the second-highest ranked player in the SEC with Georgia’s Katarina Jokic at No. 16. The preseason list is the only poll released thus far by the ITA.

Elite Ranks

  • With a three-set victory on Jan. 17 against Western Kentucky, Rosca earned her 100th career singles victory.
  • To date throughout her career, she owns an overall 106-48 singles record.
  • Combining singles and doubles, Rosca is 198-106 in her career as a Commodore thanks to her 92-58 record in doubles play.

Looking Astern

  • Closing out the nonconference portion of the schedule, Vanderbilt earned a pair of ACC wins with a 5-2 win over Louisville on Friday before a 4-2 road win at No. 9 Georgia Tech on Sunday.
  • The win over the Yellow Jackets marks the second in a row over a top-10 program going back to last season when it beat No. 10 Ohio State.

A New Captain

  • Over summer, Aleke Tsoubanos took over as the program’s head coach after 13 seasons on staff as an assistant coach.
  • With Tsoubanos taking over, Geoff Macdonald remains on staff as the program’s assistant coach.
  • One of the most-respected college coaching duos in the country, Tsoubanos and Macdonald led the Commodores to the program’s first national championship in 2015. The pair has also ushered the Dores to 236 wins, 12 NCAA Tournament appearances and back-to-back SEC Tournament and regular-season titles in 2017-18.
  • Tsoubanos’s first dual-match victory came Jan. 17 in a 7-0 sweep of Western Kentucky and her first win over a ranked opponent came last weekend when the Dores beat N0. 9 Georgia Tech.

Badges of Honor

  • Holly Staff earned the first SEC Freshman of the Week honor on Jan. 28.
  • Since earning the honor, she has continued the dominant start to her collegiate career with a 12-3 mark across singles and doubles this spring.

A Look Back at 2019-20

  • Last season, Vanderbilt went 7-3 across 10 matches with a 3-1 mark in conference play before the remainder of the year was canceled due to COVID-19. Two of those losses were by 4-3 scorelines against Arizona State and No. 36 LSU.
  • Rosca won each of her last five matches of the season, finishing the spring campaign with an 8-2 record and a 6-1 mark at No. 1 singles.
  • Cruz also had a strong debut season, going 5-1 on the year – all at No. 5 singles – before the shutdown.

On The Radar

  • Following its first SEC match, the Commodores will host two more matches in a three-match homestand against Auburn and Alabama on Feb. 26 and 28, respectively, at Currey Tennis Center.