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Lady Flames Take on Syracuse, Saturday

January 28, 2016  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Lady Flames Take on Syracuse, Saturday

The Liberty women's tennis squad will travel to Syracuse, N.Y., this Saturday for an 11 a.m. match with the Orange at Drumlins Country Club.

The Lady Flames are off to a 1-2 start, having fallen in their previous two contests against Xavier (6-1) and Cincinnati (5-2). Both matches were played in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Liberty's contest against Syracuse will mark the first time that the two programs have faced each other on the tennis courts.

Syracuse opens its season tomorrow against Columbia at 1 p.m. The Orange had their original contest against Army canceled on Saturday due to winter storm Jonas.    

Chasing History
Belen Rivera and Maria Khval continue to climb up the program's all-time singles wins ladder. Rivera currently ranks sixth in all-time in singles wins with 51, while Khval is tied with Cameron Richard for seventh with 49. Valerie Thong continues to improve her rankings in doubles action, having notched 13 victories thus far to move the senior into second most all-time doubles wins in program history with 75. Thong needs just four doubles wins to pass Jordan Jenkins for the most in school history.

Double Trouble
Thong and sophomore Evangeline Crist garnered doubles recognition on Jan. 6, being tabbed the No. 8 regional doubles tandem in the Atlantic Region. The No. 8 ranking marks the second consecutive season that Thong has been a member of a team featured among the Atlantic Region Top 10 doubles squads. Thong and Crist captured 11 doubles wins this past fall, complementing their record-setting 22 doubles wins in the 2015 spring season. The dynamic duo are 2-1 to begin the spring season.

Updated Scoring System
In an effort to make the college game of tennis safer and more fan friendly, a new scoring system has been put in place for the 2016 season. On Aug. 13, the Division I Competition Oversight Committee approved no-ad scoring for all men's and women's tennis competitions, removing the advantage-scoring system which was originally in place when a game score reached 40-40. In addition, doubles matches that were previously played to eight games are now being played to six games. Warm ups between opponents prior to singles play has also been removed in an effort to accelerate the rate of a match.

Following this weekend's matchup, the Lady Flames will conclude their four-game road swing with a contest on Feb. 6 against Elon at noon.