Tennis duo crowned national champ

Photo Courtesy of GT Sports Information

It was a memorable four days for Tech doubles partners Kendal Woodard and Megan Kurey as they took home the  USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships doubles championship this past weekend in Flushing, N.Y.

The duo entered the tournament ranked as the No. 26 pair in the nation but managed to pull out win after win—four in total—to eventually be crowned champions.

The magical run started with a dispatching of number three overall seed Brynn Boren and Zoe Katz of USC, and concluded with a hard-fought, come-from-behind, three set victory over Julie Fellerhoff and Rebecca Shine of Louisville in the title match.

“We are super excited to bring the title back to Georgia Tech.  It means so much to be a part of such a supportive GT family, you all got us through the battles,”  Kurey said.

“It gives us great confidence and hopefully we can continue playing as well as we did.  Our [focus] now is to make it to the NCAAs,” Woodard said.

The truth is the whole experience of playing at the National Indoors was really uncharted waters for Tech tennis, as no Jackets doubles pair had ever won the regional event and made the national tournament, let alone win it. Combining that with Kurey and Woodard’s win over the number three overall seed—their fifth win this year against a nationally ranked opponent—it seems they are doing things that only they thought were possible.

“When we go into a match, we don’t really pay attention to seedings,” Woodard said. “We approach every match the same.  Perhaps this has been one of their keys to success so far this year.”

Another vital ingredient has been the chemistry between these two players.  In response to what worked for her on the court last weekend, Woodard agreed, saying that the chemistry between herself and Kurey was the reason for their victory.

“Megan sets me up great at the net and I try to do the same for her.  It just works,” Woodard said.

Most importantly, they were aware of the magnitude of the stage they were on but didn’t back down from it. On the contrary, they actually seemed to relish the opportunity to play on the same site that the U.S. Open is held.

“It was awesome playing in Flushing Meadows,” Kendal said.  “I look forward to going back and playing there again.”