Whoriskey was also selected to the singles draw as a top-16 seed.
May 5, 2010
By Donnie Conley, Media Relations Student Assistant
KNOXVILLE, Tenn - Lady Vol tennis players Caitlin Whoriskey and Natalie Pluskota received the No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA Division I doubles championships as the draws for both singles and doubles were announced on Wednesday evening.
The singles and doubles portions of the NCAA Tournament will run from May 26-31 at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex in Athens, Ga., following the conclusion of the team championship on May 25.
The talented duo earned an automatic bid after finishing as the top-ranked doubles duo in the SEC. Though they have an overall record of 19-1 this season, Whoriskey and Pluskota haven't played together since Feb. 14, when Pluskota suffered a hip injury.
Despite all that missed time, the selection committee still thought highly enough of Whoriskey and Pluskota's résumé to give them the top seed. Pluskota returned to action last weekend, going 1-1 paired with Jennifer Meredith in doubles play at the SEC Tournament.
Whoriskey and Pluskota will be looking to record their second major victory in a national tournament this year, as they won the 2009 ITA All-America Doubles Championship in October.
Last year, they reached the National Semifinals of the NCAA doubles draw before suffering a heartbreaking defeat in a third-set tiebreaker to eventual runners-up Hilary Barte and Lindsay Burdette of Stanford. Whoriskey also reached the Sweet 16 as a freshman in 2007.
Whoriskey will also compete in the singles portion of the tournament for the third straight year. The East Sandwich, Mass. native ranked No. 11 in the latest Campbell/ITA rankings. She is coming off the best season of her career, going 29-11 in singles play out of the No. 1 position. She earned First Team All-SEC honors for the second consecutive season and had 15 wins against top-100 foes. One of those victories came against Irina Falconi of Georgia Tech, the top overall seed in the singles field.
Rosalía Alda and Zsófia Zubor were chosen as fifth alternates for doubles play, but could work their way into the field as a few of the alternates ranked ahead of them likely won't team up for the NCAA Tournament.
Junior Maria Sorbello is the No. 5 alternate in singles play.
The 13th-seeded Lady Vols return to action on May 14 in an NCAA Tournament First Round contest against Big South champion Winthrop (16-8, 6-1). The match will begin at 1 p.m. at the Barksdale Varsity Tennis Courts in Knoxville.
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