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Women's Tennis Heads South for Weekend Pair in Florida
No. 81 Matea Cutura is on a seven-match win streak at first singles.

No. 81 Matea Cutura is on a seven-match win streak at first singles.

April 5, 2013

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CHICAGO - Fresh off a spring break trip to California, the DePaul women's tennis team is on its way to a challenging road weekend featuring a pair of nationally-ranked opponents in Florida.  

On Saturday, DePaul meets No. 64 Central Florida at 2:00 p.m. CT in Orlando, Fla. followed by a second match on Sunday versus No. 57 South Florida at 10:00 a.m. in Tampa, Fla.

The Blue Demons (10-7) will be going for a second straight win after defeating Cal State Fullerton 6-1 during last week's road trip to the West Coast. DePaul will also be aiming to improve on its 4-4 road mark and 1-5 record against ranked teams.

Keep an eye on the doubles point, which is often the victory bellwether for the Blue Demons. When they take the point, the team is 9-0 against a 1-7 mark when falling in pairs play.

No. 81-ranked Matea Cutura continues to lead the way for DePaul and has sparkled all season with a remarkable 14-3 mark at first singles during her first year of collegiate tennis. The Zagreb, Croatia-native is 24-5 overall and boasts a 5-1 ledger against ranked opposition.

Four total Blue Demons have put together 20-plus wins this season from the singles lineup. Another freshman, Ana Vladutu, tops the squad with a 25-9 overall record. Junior captain Kelsey Lawson (22-10) and freshman Jarret Fisher (23-7) have also been tough matchups for opponents in solo play.

Leading the team in doubles, Fisher and classmate Zaina Sufi are 10-2 overall from the three hole while Cutura and Lawson have teamed up for a 9-2 mark playing at first and second doubles.

Scouting Central Florida

No. 64 UCF is 12-5 on the year and coming off road wins versus East Carolina and UNC Wilmington. The Knights are currently riding a five match winning streak going back to March 9 and have yet to be defeated on their home courts (7-0).

Looking to challenge Cutura, UCF's Genevieve Lorbergs is on a four-match individual winning streak herself and is 12-4 overall at the top spot in the order. The Knights have also received 23 wins from freshman Caroline Eberhart.

It will be the second meeting all-time in the series. DePaul dropped the only previous match against UCF 5-1 during the 1998-99 season.

Scouting South Florida

Coming off a 6-1 win against Marquette, No. 57 USF (11-6) is 5-0 against BIG EAST competition this season and has won six of its past seven overall.

Senior Ecaterina Vasenina paces the Bulls with a 10-5 mark in dual matches and is 3-1 against conference opponents. Loreto Alonso Martinez (10-6) and Danielle Mills (10-4) have also reached double-digit wins for USF.

In doubles play, the pair of Alonso and Vasenina remains undefeated against the BIG EAST at 5-0 and are 11-5 overall.

The Blue Demons will be looking for revenge after then-No. 40 USF claimed a 4-3 victory in Lincoln Park last April 15.

Next Up

Following the weekend, DePaul has just two remaining regular season contests scheduled. Both come next weekend on the road, where the Blue Demons will meet a pair of BIG EAST rivals in Cincinnati and Louisville.

DePaul faces Cincinnati first on Saturday, April 13 with first serve scheduled for 1:00 p.m.