Netters start with Purdue

With one movement of a kaleidoscope, a new formation appears.

As the 1992 portion of the NIU women’s tennis season begins, Coach Patty Groth finds her team to be its own kind of kaleidoscope. Groth’s No. 3 single and No. 1 doubles player Svetlana Nedeljkovic is recovering from an illness and will miss Saturday’s (Feb. 1) 5 p.m. matchup with the Purdue Boilermakers at the Kishwaukee Family YMCA in DeKalb.

“It will hurt us a little bit,” Groth said, “especially in our doubles play. But, I think we should do alright in our singles matches. We should have no problems winning this, if we do the things we are capable of doing.”

The Huskie leader is junior Sarah Murfey, who finished the fall competing in the Rolex Midwest Women’s Intercollegiate Tennis Championships at the University of Wisconsin. Murfey is NIU’s No. 1 singles player and is usually Nedeljkovic’s partner at the No. 1 doubles flight. Murfey is already somewhat familiar with the Boilermakers. At the Notre Dame Invitational, she swept past Purdue’s Iffy Okofafor 6-1,6-0.

Another netter used to Purdue’s strategies is Hild Andersch. The junior, who plays No. 2 singles and doubles player, handily defeated Eve Slowinski 6-3, 6-3 at the same tourney. While the team hasn’t competed since November, Groth isn’t worried about the player’s stamina. Her NIU troop has been conditioning throughout December and January.

“We’ve been keeping in shape,” Groth said. “Our endurance is there and our strength is there. What I do have to worry about are blisters on the hands from where the racket rubs.”