After months of waiting and planning, the 2021 ITA Division I National Women’s Team Indoor Championship begins tomorrow at the Greenwood Tennis Center in Stillwater, Oklahoma.
Eight of the top women’s teams in the country will compete over a three-day tournament to claim the national title. All of the competing teams currently ranked within the top 15 teams in the nation.
Defending national champions and No. 1 seed North Carolina will kick off the tournament Friday morning against the Ohio State Buckeyes. The Tar Heels head to Indoors in a strong position — they are undefeated on the year and three of the top five singles players in the country are Tar Heels. Ohio State will be looking to make it two straight upsets over top 10 ranked teams. The Buckeyes have not competed since their big win over then No. 10 Virginia in their Kickoff Weekend regional championship match.
The Heels will look to become the first program to win back-to-back Indoor national championships since Northwestern’s 2010 team.
The ‘Cats are back competing at Indoors this year and the road to the national championship goes through No. 3 seed Texas. Both programs are undefeated on the season. The Longhorns and Wildcats both qualified for Indoors after blanking their opponents – Baylor (prev. No. 23) and Wake Forest (prev. No. 16) respectively – in their Kickoff Weekend regional championship matches.
2020 Indoors Runner-up UCLA is back to compete for the national championship once again. Historically, the Bruins have had great success at Indoors. They are tied with Stanford and Florida for the most runner-up finishes, at five. They have only been able to claim the national championship once though – in 2012.
The No. 2 seed Bruins start their quest for the trophy on Friday against host Oklahoma State. Both programs have two dual matches under their belts in the 2021 season.
Finally, in a bi-coastal matchup, No. 4 seed Pepperdine will take on Georgia Tech in the opening round. The Waves will be led by the No. 1 singles player in the country – Ashley Lahey. The Yellowjackets have had a busy January schedule tuning up for Indoors. They currently sit at 6-0 in dual matches. Georgia Tech won back-to-back national titles in 2007 and 2008 — the only Indoor titles in program history.
The 34th edition of DI Women’s Indoors is a single-elimination tournament with the national champion being crowned on Sunday, February 7th. Despite being a single-elimination tournament, all eight teams are guaranteed three dual matches over the weekend.
Due to Covid-19 safety precautions, season ticket holders will be able to attend only the matches in which Oklahoma State is competing. There will be a pass list for each team for specific matches and the facility will be cleared between each match while the next match is warming up. This will allow for fan attendance and allow each team a set number of fans so parents and/or supporters can attend. For any questions regarding ticketing, contact the OSU ticket office https://tickets.okstate.com/ or 877-ALL-4-OSU.
Fans will be able to livestream every match throughout the tournament. Cracked Racquets will once again be providing play-by-play and commentary for the ITA Division I National Women’s Team Indoor Championship. The ITA continues to seek ways to enhance the fan experience and Cracked Racquets is that next step.
In addition to the standard live-stream and post-match box scores, coverage will include features such as play-by-play commentary, on-site interviews with participating coaches and players, daily podcasts, and much more.