The University of Iowa women’s tennis team meets No. 34 Minnesota (15-7, 5-6) in the first round of the Big Ten Championships on Thursday at the Varsity Tennis Center in Columbus, Ohio. The sixth-seed Golden Gophers and 11th-seeded Hawkeyes play at 2 p.m (CT). Live scoring will be available on the women’s tennis schedule page at hawkeyesports.com.
HAWKEYES-GOPHERS SERIES HISTORY
The Hawkeyes are 20-34 all-time against Minnesota. The Golden Gophers defeated Iowa, 6-1, in the team’s regular season finale on April 22 in Minneapolis.
IOWA AT THE BIG TEN CHAMPIONSHIPS UNDER DOUGHERTY
Iowa is 1-2 at the Big Ten Championships under head coach Katie Dougherty. The Hawkeyes lost, 4-2, to Minnesota in the first round in 2011. Iowa topped Indiana, 4-1, before falling to No. 1 seed and eventual champion Michigan, 4-1, in 2010. The Hawkeyes have never won the Big Ten Championships.
WITHIN ONE OF 100
Senior Sonja Molnar won the 99th singles match of her career when she downed Wisconsin’s Alaina Trgovich, 7-5, 6-2, on April 20. With a win against Minnesota on Thursday, Molnar would become the third Hawkeye in program history to win 100 career singles match. The Guelph, Ontario, native would join Milica Veselnovic (113 career wins) and Laura Dvorak (102 wins). Molnar is 4-1 in her career against the Golden Gophers.
HAWKEYES AND GOPHERS IN THE ITA RANKINGS
Senior Sonja Molnar was tabbed 69th in the ITA singles poll on April 24. Molnar has been ranked as high as No. 65 this season. Minnesota’s Natallia Pntusava and Magdalena Wiecha appeared at No. 52 in the ITA doubles poll.
MOLNAR TABBED ATHLETE OF THE WEEK
Senior Sonja Molnar was named Big Ten Women’s Tennis Athlete of the Week by the conference office April 17. Molnar earned the honor after defeating Michigan State’s Olga Chernova, 6-1, 6-0, on April 13 and Emina Bektas of Michigan, 7-5, 4-6, 1-0 (11-9), on April 15. Molnar earned the honor for the fourth time in her Hawkeye career. Freshman Shelby Talcott was the last Iowa student-athlete to be selected for the award (Sept. 21, 2011).
ANOTHER RANKED OPPONENT GOES DOWN
Senior Sonja Molnar defeated 11th-ranked Emina Bektas of Michigan on April 15, earning her fourth dual win against a ranked opponent this season. Bektas is the highest-ranked dual opponent Molnar has defeated in her Hawkeye career.
TALCOTT BEATS RANKED OPPONENT
Freshman Shelby Talcott claimed the first victory of her career over a nationally-ranked opponent against No. 14 Michigan on April 15. Talcott downed No. 75 Brooke Bolender, 4-6, 6-4, 1-0 (10-4) at the No. 2 position.