PHILADELPHIA The NCAA announced the 32 teams selected to the 2008 Women’s Tennis Doubles Championships to be held May 21-26 at the Michael D. Case Tennis Center in Tulsa, Ok. at the University of Tulsa. For the second year in a row, a Penn doubles team was selected for the tournament.
Ekaterina Kosminskaya and Julia Koulbitskaya earned an automatic bid to the tournament as the Ivy League’s representative. The duo is the only Ancient Eight team selected for the tournament.
For Kosminskaya, this is the second time she will compete in the national tournament. In 2007, she teamed with Maria Anisimova to earn Penn’s first-ever women’s doubles bid to the tournament. The pair won their first round match also a first for Penn before falling in the Round of 16. This is Koulbitskaya’s first selection to the NCAA Championships.
Penn’s top doubles team is currently ranked 36th in the country by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) and has compiled a 20-4 record throughout the fall and spring seasons.
In the fall, they won two tournaments as a team in a run that saw them win 12 of 13 fall matches. They took the William & Mary Invitational crown with four wins including a win in the final over Arkansas’ Ela Kaluder and Aurelija Miseviciute, an at-large selection to the tournament and the 29th-ranked team in the nation. Kosminskaya and Koulbitskaya also picked up wins in the tournament over teams from Duke and William & Mary that featured one player whose current team earned bids to the tournament.
Ekaterina and Julia followed up their first title with a second one a week later as they captured the Cissie Leary championship on their home courts at Penn. Again, four wins were needed for the title and the duo dropped only ten points over the four matches for the win.
In the spring, the duo teamed up as Penn’s number one doubles team 11 times, winning eight matches. They were 4-1 in Ivy League matches and won a match against Marshall’s Karolina Soor and Kellie Schmitt another automatic qualifier to the tournament.
Pairings for the first round will be announced at a later date.