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Florida trip highlights road-heavy schedule for OC women’s tennis

Maryfer Abreu Roman is one of two returning starters this season for OC's women's tennis team.
Maryfer Abreu Roman is one of two returning starters this season for OC's women's tennis team.

OKLAHOMA CITY (Dec. 17, 2012) – A spring break trip to south Florida and trips to Texas to face a top NCAA Division II and a Division I foe highlight the Oklahoma Christian women’s tennis schedule for 2013, which was released Monday.

OC will face nine teams that finished in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s Division II top 50 final rankings last spring, including four that were in the top six nationally. The Lady Eagles finished 18-4 and reached the NAIA semifinals last season.

Two starters return from last year’s OC team – Maryfer Abreu Roman and Gabriela Carrillo. Newcomers to this year’s team include Barbora Bozkova, Gisela Castany, Bright Phakamad and Angie Torres Quezada.

The Lady Eagles will have just three home matches at Oak Tree Country Club in Edmond this season, all during a 10-day span in April.

The Lady Eagles will open the season with a trip to Abilene, Texas, where they will play Division II Trinity (Texas) on Feb. 8 and last season’s No. 4-ranked squad, Abilene Christian (Texas), on Feb. 10. After a trip to Arkansas to play Harding (Ark.) on Feb. 14 and Arkansas-Fort Smith on Feb. 15, the Lady Eagles will visit Midwestern State (Texas) on March 2.

OC’s first local match will technically be on the road, as the Lady Eagles will face longtime rival Southern Nazarene at the Oklahoma City Tennis Center on March 9.

Then will come the journey to Florida, during which the Lady Eagles will play five matches, including showdowns against Barry (Fla.) on March 17 and Lynn (Fla.) on March 21. Barry and Lynn finished third and fifth, respectively, in the final Division II rankings in 2012.

OC will also face Northwood (Fla.), Palm Beach Atlantic (Fla.) and St. Thomas (Fla.) during spring break.

The Lady Eagles’ home opener will be April 4 against Midwestern State, the first of five matches over a four-day span for OC. The next day the Lady Eagles will travel to Lawton to face in-state rival Cameron, a squad that finished 11th in last year’s Division II rankings, and St. Mary’s (Texas), one of OC’s new Heartland Conference rivals.

After one more match in Lawton against Tarleton State (Texas) on April 6, OC will travel to Austin, Texas, to face last season’s No. 6 Division II squad, Hawaii Pacific, on April 7.

OC then will have consecutive home matches against Southern Nazarene on April 10 and Incarnate Word (Texas) on April 13, then will close the regular season with a match on April 20 at Division I Texas State.

Should the Lady Eagles qualify for the National Christian College Athletic Association Championship, they would play in that tournament May 7-10 in Mobile, Ala.