Wednesday, 12 April 2017 17:13

USTA Rankings Released, Baylor Men & Women Sweep Texas, Tulane Tops SMU, Pepperdine Wipes Out Stanford

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The latest USTA Top 25 is out with both the Wake Forest men and Florida women remaining at No. 1. The men's top four stayed the same with TCU moving up one spot to No. 5. The women's top 10 remained largely unchanged with the only real move coming when North Carolina and Stanford swapped spots at No. 3 and No. 4. Oklahoma State and Northwestern made the biggest jumps on the men's side with each coming up three spots to No. 6 and No. 21 respectively. Kentucky took the biggest fall dropping five spots to No. 24 after a loss at home to Alabama. 

On the women's side, Arizona State and Texas each came up three spots to No. 17 and No. 18 respectively while Kentucky took the biggest fall dropping five spots to No. 20 after losing to LSU and Texas A&M. 

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Voter ballots available to the public: BobbyDallas Oliver (TRN), Bruce Waschuk (UTR Men/Women)

USTA Poll Information: there are eight college tennis "experts" on the voting panel, including yours truly, and each of us ranked 25 teams from numbers 1 to 25, with the first-place team receiving 25 points and the last-place team receiving one. When voting we were to consider strength of schedule, Top 25 wins/losses, road wins/losses and personnel adjustments for each program while also basing our vote on performance, not reputation or preseason speculation. For control, the highest and lowest outlying ranking for each team on the ballot was removed. Therefore, the maximum number of points a team can receive is 150. First-place votes were not tallied. 

Voting Panel: Casey Angle (former ITA championships director), Virgil Christian (USTA College Tennis), Granger Huntress (Texas College Tennis), Bobby Knight (College Tennis Today), Dallas Oliver (Tennis Recruiting Network), Mike Patrick (former University of Tennessee women’s coach), Lisa Stone (Parenting Aces) and Bruce Waschuk (Universal Tennis Rating).

USTA MEN'S TOP 25   USTA WOMEN'S TOP 25
Rank School Votes Prv Chg Rank School Votes Prv Chg
1 Wake Forest 149 1 0 1 Florida 150 1 0
2 Virginia 145 2 0 2 Ohio State 142 2 0
3 Ohio State 139 3 0 3 North Carolina 135 4 1
4 North Carolina 132 4 0 4 Stanford 132 3 -1
5 TCU 121 6 1 5 Georgia 128 5 0
6 Oklahoma State 117 9 3 6 Texas Tech 120 6 0
7 Texas 108 8 1 T7 Georgia Tech 111 7 0
8 USC 108 5 -3 T7 Oklahoma State 111 8 1
9 Baylor 106 7 -2 9 California 100 9 0
10 UCLA 101 10 0 10 Michigan 95 10 0
11 Georgia 87 12 1 11 Vanderbilt 94 11 0
T12 California 75 13 1 12 Pepperdine 89 12 0
T12 Texas A&M 75 11 -1 13 UCLA 77 13 0
14 Stanford 73 16 2 14 Baylor 70 14 0
15 Michigan 71 14 -1 15 Duke 66 16 1
16 Oklahoma 54 15 -1 16 South Carolina 56 18 2
17 Georgia Tech 48 18 1 17 Arizona State 48 20 3
18 Columbia 46 20 2 T18 Auburn 38 17 -1
19 Florida 45 17 -2 T18 Texas 38 21 3
20 Mississippi State 43 21 1 20 Kentucky 32 15 -5
21 Northwestern 17 24 3 21 Mississippi State 30 19 -2
T22 Cornell 16 23 1 22 Arkansas 22 22 0
T22 South Carolina 16 22 0 23 LSU 20 25 2
24 Kentucky 11 19 -5 24 Texas A&M 18 23 -1
25 Oregon 10 25 0 25 Florida International 15 24 -1
Receiving Votes: South Florida (7), Tulane (5), UCF (4) Dropped Out: None
Receiving Votes: USC (3), TCU (1) Dropped Out: None

 

 

Fourth-ranked Baylor went into Austin and defeated No. 8 Texas for the 10th straight time after winning 4-1. The Bears got off to a quick start in doubles by going up a break on all three courts and despite a late push by Texas it wouldn't be enough. Juan Benitez and Will Little jumped out to a 4-1 lead at No. 1 but Texas's Yuya Ito and Harrison Scott would get it back on serve after breaking Little for 4-3. Baylor broke the Scott serve for 5-3 and then Benitez served it out to take it 6-3. Just a few minutes later Baylor would finish off the doubles point after Jimmy Bendeck and Johannes Schretter closed out George Goldhoff and Leo Telles 6-2 at No. 2. Bendeck and Schretter opened up a 4-0 lead and then exchanged service holds to clinch it.

Baylor kept the good times rolling in singles and took four opening sets including Jimmy Bendeck coming back from a break down to take the first set in a tiebreak at No. 5. Baylor's Max Tchoutakian made it 2-0 after rolling over Christian Sigsgaard 6-3, 6-1 at No. 2. Texas got on the board when George Goldhoff broke Will Little and then served out a 6-1, 7-5 win at No. 4. 

Baylor's Juan Benitez made it 3-1 with a straight win over Harrison Scott at No. 1. Benitez broke Scott for 4-2 in the first and a few games later he'd close out the set 6-3. Scott went up 2-0 to start the second set but Benitez broke, held, broke, and held to go up 4-2. Scott won the next three games to go up 5-4 but Benitez would take the next three to close it out 6-3, 7-5. 

Each of the three remaining matches had split sets but Baylor's Johannes Schretter was putting the hammer down on Yuya Ito at No. 3. Schretter took the first 6-4 but Ito rolled in the second taking it 6-1. The third set was all Schretter as he took 6-0 to give Baylor the 4-1 win. 

It's pretty amazing that Baylor hasn't lost in Austin since 1999 because Texas had had some strong teams over the 18 years.

 

 

#4 Baylor 4, #8 Texas 1
Apr 12, 2017 at Austin, Texas (Caswell Tennis Center)
Singles competition
1. #12 Juan Benitez (BU) def. #48 Harrison Scott (UT) 6-3, 7-5
2. #51 Max Tchoutakian (BU) def. #22 Christian Sigsgaard (UT) 6-3, 6-1
3. #78 Johannes Schretter (BU) def. #42 Yuya Ito (UT) 6-4, 1-6, 6-0
4. George Goldhoff (UT) def. Will Little (BU) 6-1, 7-5
5. Leo Telles (UT) vs. Jimmy Bendeck (BU) 6-7 (1-7), 6-1, 1-0, unfinished
6. Rodrigo Banzer (UT) vs. Constantin Frantzen (BU) 6-3, 5-7, unfinished
Doubles competition
1. #13 Juan Benitez/Will Little (BU) def. Yuya Ito/Harrison Scott (UT) 6-3
2. Jimmy Bendeck/Johannes Schretter (BU) def. #67 George Goldhoff/Leo Telles (UT) 6-2
3. Christian Sigsgaard/Colin Markes (UT) vs. Max Tchoutakian/Constantin Frantzen (BU) 5-4, unfinished
Match Notes
Baylor 21-4, 2-1 Big 12; National ranking #4
Texas 18-6, 1-2 Big 12; National ranking #8
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2); Singles (2,4,1,3)
T-2:16

Post-Match Quotes from Baylor's recap

TOP QUOTE #1
"I am really proud of the guys for the way they bounced back from a tough loss the other day. The guys came out in the next practice ready to focus and ready to get better. You saw a team today that was re-energized and responded to some adversity in a really first class way." -- head coach Matt Knoll on the match

TOP QUOTE #2
"This is a huge win. What a stupid league this is. It is just ridiculous. It just doesn’t get any easier. That’s why we all came to Baylor, because we want to play these kind of matches. It is great that the Big 12 is the best men’s tennis league in the country. It just makes guys better and it is fun.” - Knoll on Big 12 conference play

Post-Match Quotes from Texas's recap

Texas head coach Michael Center - 'We had a terrible start in doubles, and to me it set the tone for the match. I was really disappointed to lose serve on all three counts and go down a break. That put us in a hole right out of the gate not only on the scoreboard, but it just put us behind the 8-ball. We came back and had a chance at one doubles and we were on-serve at three. I thought we were playing better, but you can't give up those breaks and expect to win the doubles point. I was pretty disappointed. We had some chances in singles. We knew it would be tough at some spots, but we didn't execute well enough on some of the big points tonight. We never really grabbed the momentum and were just fighting uphill all night.'

 

 

While the men were playing in Austin the women were playing in Waco as No. 15 Baylor defeated No. 24 Texas 4-2. Baylor rolled through the doubles point by picking up 6-2 wins at No. 1 and No. 3 and then the teams split first sets in singles. Texas picked up straight set wins from Neda Koprcina and Anna Turati at No. 2 and No. 4 while Baylor's Theresa Van Zyl and Jessica Hinojosa won in straight sets at No. 5 and No. 6. 

Baylor senior Blair Shankle would get the clincher at No. 1 after outlasting Bianca Turati 4-6, 6-2, 6-4. Baylor has now won 19 of the last 21 matches in the series.  

#15 Baylor 4, #24 Texas 2
Apr 12, 2017 at Waco, Texas (Hurd Tennis Center)
Singles competition
1. #5 Blair Shankle (BU) def. #36 Bianca Turati (UT) 4-6, 6-2, 6-4
2. #76 Neda Koprcina (UT) def. Elizabeth Profit (BU) 6-2, 7-6
3. #119 Rhiann Newborn (BU) vs. #74 Petra Granic (UT) 7-5, 6-7, 4-2, unfinished
4. Anna Turati (UT) def. Angie Shakhraichuk (BU) 6-2, 6-1
5. Theresa Van Zyl (BU) def. Dani Wagland (UT) 7-5, 6-1
6. Jessica Hinojosa (BU) def. Daniella Roldan (UT) 6-2, 6-4
Doubles competition
1. Blair Shankle/Karina Traxler (BU) def. #65 Petra Granic/Bianca Turati (UT) 6-2
2. Elizabeth Profit/Theresa Van Zyl (BU) vs. Neda Koprcina/Anna Turati (UT) 3-5, unfinished
3. Angie Shakhraichuk/Jessica Hinojosa (BU) def. Daniella Roldan/Dani Wagland (UT) 6-2
Match Notes
Texas 10-7; National ranking #21
Baylor 17-5; National ranking #15
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1); Singles (6,4,5,2,1)

Post-Match Quotes from Baylor's recap
“That was a big win. It was a great effort from our entire team. The girls were really focused and motivated, and I’m proud our players.” -Head coach Joey Scrivano

“Anytime you win helps your self-esteem, but when you win like this it takes you to another level. Our players can get into a real battle and they can come out on top. These types of experiences are invaluable, and I’m really proud of our team for fighting from start to finish.” - Head coach Joey Scrivano

“Mental toughness is just character in action. They showed a lot of character today and that’s what you want; that’s what athletics is about. It’s about fighting through adversity and eating, and I’m very proud of our team today.” - Head coach Joey Scrivano

Post-Match Quotes from Texas's recap
Texas head coach Howard Joffe - "I definitely give our ladies a ton of credit for making a match of it in the end. That aside, we paid dearly for a miserable doubles performance. Clearly I did not have the team ready to play today."

  

  

Tulane finished its regular season with a perfect 11-0 record at home, 17-4 overall, after dismissing No. 36 SMU 6-1. The Green Wave won the doubles point with wins at No. 1 and No. 2 and then they took five first sets in singles and closed all five out in straight sets with Luis Erlenbusch getting the clincher at No. 5.

Tulane's next match will be a week from Friday in Orlando at the American Conference Tournament where the Green Wave will be no worse than the No. 2 seed. As it stands right now South Florida will be the top seed however if they lose at home to Memphis on Monday then Tulane would be the top seed. SMU's last regular season match will come on Sunday when it hosts Rice - the Mustangs will either be a No. 4 or No. 5 seed in the conference tournament and fill face Memphis.

Since the AAC doesn't play a round-robin schedule the seeding for the conference tournament is based off ITA ranking. So as of this minute this would be the seeds for next week's tournament. 

American Conference Tournament Seeds
1. South Florida (vs. Memphis/Monday)
2. Tulane (done)
3. UCF (done)
4. Memphis (at South Florida/Monday)
5. SMU (vs. Rice/Sunday)
6. Tulsa (at Oklahoma State/Friday)
7. Temple (Lehigh/Saturday)
8. East Carolina (Elon/Friday)
9. Connecticut (St. Francis NY/Saturday)
 
AAC Quarterfinals
#1 South Florida vs. #8 East Carolina/#9 Connecticut winner
#4 Memphis vs. #5 SMU
#3 UCF vs. #6 Tulsa
#2 Tulane vs. #7 Temple
 

#27 Tulane 6, #36 SMU 1
Apr 12, 2017 at New Orleans (City Park Pepsi Tennis Center)
Singles competition
1. #16 Constantin Schmitz (TLN) def. #93 Hunter Johnson (SMU) 6-4, 6-4
2. Sebastian Rey (TLN) def. #70 Ronald Slobodchikov (SMU) 6-2, 7-5
3. Samm Butler (SMU) def. Ewan Moore (TLN) 7-5, 6-0
4. Tyler Schick (TLN) def. Markus Kerner (SMU) 6-1, 6-3
5. Luis Erlenbusch (TLN) def. Arkadijs Slobodkins (SMU) 6-3, 6-3
6. Chi-Shan Jao (TLN) def. Yates Johnson (SMU) 6-4, 6-1
Doubles competition
1. Constantin Schmitz/Chi-Shan Jao (TLN) def. Markus Kerner/Yates Johnson (SMU) 6-4
2. Tyler Schick/Ewan Moore (TLN) def. Tony Russell/Hunter Johnson (SMU) 6-2
3. Ronald Slobodchikov/Samm Butler (SMU) def. Tim Ruetzel/Sebastian Rey (TLN) 6-3
Match Notes:
SMU 11-10; National ranking #36
Tulane 17-4; National ranking #27
Order of finish: Doubles (2,3,1); Singles (4,6,3,5,2,1)

 

 

Post-Match Quotes from Tulane's recap
"Love the effort by these guys today," Tulane head coach Mark Booras said. "They were focused and dialed in, from the first point in doubles, all the way through the last point in singles. We had almost a complete effort there with all straight-set wins. That's really saying something about their heart and ability, taking down a SMU squad that has some great wins this year."

"We wanted to finish strong heading into conference tournament," Booras added. "This last homestand we set some goals about how we are going to keep climbing as a team and this is one of the ways."

 

 

Prior to last year Pepperdine has never defeated Stanford (0-32) but after today's 5-2 win the Waves have now won two straight. Pepperdine came out and grabbed the early 1-0 lead after winning the doubles point with wins at No. 1 and No. 3. Pepperdine's No. 1 team of Christine Maddox and Mayar Sherif Ahmed broke for 4-2 and then three games later they'd serve it out to win 6-3. Stanford picked up a win at No. 2 after Melissa Lord and Caroline Doyle broke for 5-4 and then served it out for 6-4. In the decider at No. 3, Pepperdine's Jean Runglerdkriangkrai and Dzina Milovanovic jumped out to a 4-1 lead however Stanford's Emma Higuchi and Caroline Lampl came back to tie it at 4-4. Pepperdine held for 5-4 and then they broke to win it 6-4. 

Each team would take three first sets in singles and five of the six matches would finish in straight sets. Pepperdine's Mayar Sherif Ahmed made it 2-0 after winning 6-4, 6-1 at No. 3 but Stanford managed to tie it at 2-2 after Caroline Doyle won 7-5, 6-3 at No. 1 and Emma Higuchi won 6-1, 6-2 at No. 6. Pepperdine's Jean Runglerdkriangkrai made it 3-2 with a 6-3, 7-6 win at No. 6 and Laura Gulbe clinched it with a 7-5, 7-5 win at No. 4. 

 

 

#17 Pepperdine University 5, #10 Stanford 2
Apr 12, 2017 at Malibu, Calif. (Ralphs-Straus Tennis Center)
Singles competition
1. #54 Doyle, Caroline (STAN) def. #9 Stefani, Luisa (PEP) 7-5, 6-3
2. #21 Lahey, Ashley (PEP) def. #20 Lord, Melissa (STAN) 2-6, 7-6 (7-6), 6-1
3. #32 Sherif Ahmed, Mayar (PEP) def. #45 Davidson, Taylor (STAN) 6-4, 6-1
4. #103 Gulbe, Laura (PEP) def. #68 Lampl, Caroline (STAN) 7-5, 7-5
5. Runglerdkriangkrai,A (PEP) def. #108 Arbuthnott, Emily (STAN) 6-3, 7-6 (7-1)
6. #63 Higuchi, Emma (STAN) def. Milovanovic, Dzina (PEP) 6-1, 6-2
Doubles competition
1. #6 Maddox, Christine/Sherif Ahmed, Mayar (PEP) def. #67 Arbuthnott, Emily/Davidson, Taylor (STAN) 6-3
2. #40 Lord, Melissa/Doyle, Caroline (STAN) def. Lahey, Ashley/Stefani, Luisa (PEP) 6-4
3. Runglerdkriangkrai,A/Milovanovic, Dzina (PEP) def. Higuchi, Emma/Lampl, Caroline (STAN) 6-4
Match Notes
Stanford 15-2, 7-0 PAC-12; National ranking #10
Pepperdine University 14-4, 5-0 WCC; National ranking #17
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (3,6,1,5,4,2)

 

 

Other Wednesday Results:

  • #11 Auburn (W) won at #27 Ole Miss 4-0 - Auburn took the doubles point and picked up three quick straight set wins at 2, 3, and 6. 
  • East Tennessee State won at Middle Tennessee State 4-3 - David Biosca clinched the win at 4-2 with a straight set win at No. 1
  • VCU won at William & Mary 4-3 - Ignacio Rivero Crespo clinched at 4-1 with a straight set win at No. 6

 

If you want to see how these results impacted next week's rankings check out my real-time rankings which are available to all College Tennis Today subscribers

Read 1099 times Last modified on Thursday, 13 April 2017 11:32

3 comments

  • Comment Link Philip Thursday, 13 April 2017 11:43 posted by Philip

    I think Coach Knoll's quotes about the Big12 ("What a stupid league this is. It is just so ridiculous") were probably meant to be praiseworthy; but they can easily be taken out of context. :-)

  • Comment Link Jeff McMillan Thursday, 13 April 2017 14:28 posted by Jeff McMillan

    It's a little misleading to say the Big 12 is the best men's tennis conference. They only have 6 teams, 5 of which are very good and 1 pretty good. They do not have bad teams like other leagues simply because those schools don't have teams. If Kansas, KSU, ISU and West Virginia had teams I am sure there would be some bottom feeders in the Big 12 as well.

  • Comment Link jim lawson Sunday, 16 April 2017 23:02 posted by jim lawson

    Actually, what does the number of conference teams have to do with anything. With no bad teams in the Big 12, all conference matches are big-time match-ups. No freebies.
    TEAM RANKINGS based on top 25 this week:
    BIG 12: 4-5-8-9-19
    PAC 12: 6-7-12-15-23
    SEC: 10-11-16-17-22-24
    ACC: 1-3-13
    BIG 10: 2-14-21

    Top ranked teams have high rankings because they play killer schedules and get wins over other top teams.
    The win count is 9 for the next three weeks. Once you have a good win, it doesn't go away unless that team craters. You add up the points for your best 9 wins now and see what comes out.

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