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    Oct. 17, 2012

    CHICAGO – The UIC women’s tennis team heads to Champaign, Ill. for the USTA/ITA Midwest Regional on Thursday.  Hosted by the University of Illinois, the event is scheduled to run through Oct. 23 at Atkins Tennis Center.

    Haley Craig, Jana Knoppe, Natalia Kuvakina, Keti Mebuke and Kathryn Sharples all make the trip to compete for a spot at the USTA/ITA National Championships on Nov. 8-11.  Through singles and doubles play, the Flames will be represented in the main and qualifier draws.

    With Craig to begin competition in the main draw, Knoppe, Kuvakina, Mebuke and Sharples start off in qualifiers.  In the first round, Knoppe is to face Toledo’s Pia Rygh, as Kuvakina takes on Cleveland State’s Alex Bush, Mebuke faces off against IPFW’s Anita Henestrosa and Sharples goes head-to-head with Milwaukee’s Chelsea Bailey.

    The Flames have made strong showings in singles at their three invitationals this fall.  Sharples produced an overall singles record of 8-2, while claiming the title of her draws at DePaul and Michigan State.  With just three losses apiece, Knoppe collected seven wins and Mebuke brought in six.  Competing in top draws, Craig and Kuvakina were able to take four and three wins, respectively.

    In doubles, Craig and Sharples are set to pair up, as well as Knoppe and Kuvakina, in the main draw.  As this will be the second time Craig and Sharples have joined together this fall, it is the first time Knoppe and Kuvakina have competed alongside one another.

    Check back to for complete results and a recap of the USTA/ITA Midwest Regional.