Burdette, Frank, Buchanan/Rola Top First Campbell/ITA Rankings of 2012

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Burdette, Frank, Buchanan/Rola Top First Campbell/ITA Rankings of 2012

Florida women, USC men back at No. 1 in team rankings    

Burdette Rankings
Mallory Burdette photo by David Kenas
 

SKILLMAN, N.J. -- On Tuesday, the Intercollegiate Tennis Association released the first Campbell/ITA College Tennis Rankings of 2012, revealing the Top 125 singles players, Top 60 doubles pairs and Top 75 teams in NCAA Division I men's and women's tennis. For the complete lists, click here for the men's rankings and click here for the women's rankings. 

 

Stanford junior Mallory Burdette came away the biggest winner, securing the top spot in both the women's singles and women's doubles national rankings.  

 

After capturing the USTA/ITA National Summer Championships title, Burdette broke out this fall with a series of strong singles victories. The right-hander from Jackson, Ga., earned five fall wins over Top 15 players, defeating No. 4 Joanna Mather of Florida, No. 10 Denise Dy of Washington (twice), No. 12 Kristi Boxx of Ole Miss and No. 14 Diana Nakic of Baylor. 

 

Not far behind Burdette in the singles rankings is No. 2 Chelsey Gullickson of Georgia, a former NCAA singles champion who defeated three Florida Gators -- Mather, Sofie Oyen and Lauren Embree -- back-to-back-to-back to win the USTA/ITA Southeast Regional Championships.

 

One Gator Gullickson did not defeat this fall was No. 3 Allie Will, who won the Riviera/ITA All-American Championships in her lone appearance of the season. Will's teammate Mather is No. 4 following her dramatic run to the final of the USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships, during which she avenged her Regional loss to Gullickson.  

 

Two players from the Northwest Region are tied at No. 5 in the Campbell/ITA women's singles rankings: reigning NCAA singles champion Jana Juricova of California and Stanford sophomore Nicole Gibbs. In their only meeting of the fall, Gibbs edged Juricova in the semifinals of the USTA/ITA Northwest Regional Championships. She went on to beat her fellow Cardinal Burdette to win the title.

 

Juricova leads a talented Golden Bears' squad that features six players inside the Top 85.

 

Schools with 5+ players in Top 125 women's singles rankings

 

School      Players

California  (5) Juricova, (21) Susanyi, (32) Davis,
            (64) Estlander, (74) Schutting, (81) Goransson
Duke        (7) Capra, (35) Turewicz, (38) Mar,  

            (66) Clayton, (97) Mulholland, (118) Kahan

Virginia    (29) Fraser, (30) Hardenbergh, (75) Vierra,

            (76) Fuccillo, (85) Tomljanovic, (89) Peretz
Florida     (3) Will, (4) Mather, (25) Embree,

            (34) Oyen, (41) Cercone

UCLA        (8) Anderson, (62) Jones, (70) Montez,  

            (83) Dolehide, (112) Ray


Two weeks before they faced off in the Regional final, Gibbs and Burdette teamed to capture the Riviera/ITA All-American Championships doubles title. Along the way, they defeated the second-ranked team of Gullickson and Nadja Gilchrist (Georgia), the eighth-ranked team of Keri Wong and Josipa Bek (Clemson) and the 10th-ranked team of Will and Oyen (Florida). Those victories, combined with a semifinal appearance at the USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships, helped Gibbs and Burdette earn the No. 1 Campbell/ITA women's doubles ranking.

 

As in singles, Gullickson comes in at No. 2, playing alongside Gilchrist. The Bulldogs finished the fall with a 10-1 record, dropping only the All-American semifinal to Gibbs and Burdette. At No. 3 are USC sophomore Kaitlyn Christian and freshman Sabrina Santamaria, who made good on their at-large selection by winning the title at the USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships.

 

Rounding out the Top 5 Campbell/ITA women's doubles rankings are Kristi Boxx and Abby Guthrie of Ole Miss and Kristy Frilling and Shannon Mathews of Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish duo delivered Gibbs and Burdette their only loss of the season in the semifinals of the USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships.

 

There were no changes among the women's teams that finished in the Top 5 of the 2010-11 Campbell/ITA year-end rankings, with 2011 NCAA champion Florida, 2011 NCAA runner-up Stanford, Duke, North Carolina and UCLA appearing in that order. Miami (FL) fell from No. 7 to No. 11 in the nation, opening the door for another ACC school, Virginia, to enter the Top 10 at No. 9.

 

Also improving on their year-end rankings are USC (No. 19 to No. 16), Texas (No. 23 to No. 21) and Alabama (No. 28 to No. 23). Entering the Top 75 after finishing the 2010-11 season without a ranking are No. 68 Memphis and No. 75 Oklahoma State.  

 

Schools with biggest moves in Top 75 women's team rankings

 

School        5/30/10 Rank   1/3/11 Rank  Move

TCU           No. 59         No. 51       +8

NC State      No. 27         No. 34       -7 

UT Arlington  No. 66         No. 73       -7

Maryland      No. 34         No. 40       -6

Alabama       No. 28         No. 23       +5

Cal Poly      No. 44         No. 39       -5  

 

In the men's team rankings, Tennessee took the biggest tumble. With new players expected to fill all six of their singles spots, the Volunteers fell from No. 4 in the 2010-11 Campbell/ITA year-end rankings to No. 13. That, along with Texas A&M dropping from No. 10 to No. 11, allowed two schools to jump inside the Top 10: No. 9 UCLA and No. 10 Duke.

 

As expected, reigning NCAA champion USC and runner-up Virginia hold down the top two spots, while Mississippi State (No. 20 to No. 16), Oklahoma (No. 22 to No. 18) and Ole Miss (No. 28 to No. 24) each moved up four positions. 

 

A staggering seven schools are represented in the Top 10 of both the Campbell/ITA men's and women's team rankings.  

 

Schools in Top 10 men's and women's team rankings 

 

School        Men's Rank     Women's Rank

Virginia      No. 2          No. 9

Georgia       No. 4          No. 7

Baylor        No. 5          No. 6

Stanford      No. 6          No. 2 

Florida       No. 8          No. 1

UCLA          No. 9          No. 5

Duke          No. 10         No. 3 

 

Having finished the fall with titles at the ITA All-American and USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships, Mitchell Frank of Virginia and Chase Buchanan and Blaz Rola of Ohio State are No. 1 in the Campbell/ITA men's singles and doubles national rankings respectively.

 

Frank, a highly touted freshman with impressive junior results, defeated No. 3 Wil Spencer and four other seniors en route to the ITA All-American title in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He answered any questions about how his defensive style would translate indoors by hitting his serves harder and strokes flatter at the USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships in Flushing, N.Y.  

 

In a memorable three-set final, Frank knocked off No. 2 Dennis Nevolo of Illinois. Nevolo also extended Frank to a deciding set in the ITA All-American quarterfinals. Against opponents not named Mitchell Frank, the Illinois senior won all 11 matches he played during the fall. 

 

Few players, if any, were as active this fall as the third-ranked Spencer, who went 17-2. Besides reaching the ITA All-American final, the Georgia senior won the Southern Intercollegiate Championships on his home court in Athens and captured the consolation title at the USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships.  

 

At No. 4 in the men's singles rankings is Costin Paval of Oklahoma, a left-hander from Romania who showed off a ferocious forehand to reach the semifinals in Tulsa and the quarterfinals in Flushing. Kentucky senior Eric Quigley rounds out the Top 5 after winning the consolation title at the ITA All-American Championships and reaching the final of the USTA/ITA Ohio Valley Regional Championships.  

 

Quigley is one of six ranked Wildcats, while Paval heads a Sooner squad that features five players inside the Top 65. 

 

Schools with 5+ players in Top 125 men's singles rankings

 

School    Players

Kentucky (5) Quigley, (13) Musialek, (36) Rossi,

         (85) Jha, (95) Jomby, (111) Gomez

Oklahoma (4) Paval, (38) Mihov, (39) Siributwong,

         (53) Alcorta, (63) Webb  

USC      (12) Sarmiento, (16) Nguyen, (33) Hanfmann,

         (48) Gomez, (124) Grant

 

While each pair in the Top 5 of the Campbell/ITA men's doubles rankings posted impressive results this fall, no duo matched the dominance of Ohio State's Buchanan and Rola. On their way to titles in Tulsa and Flushing, the Buckeyes won three-setters over No. 2 Kevin King and Juan Spir (Georgia Tech), No. 3 Clifford Marsland and Ashley Watling (Tulsa) and No. 5 Nick Andrews and Christoffer Konigsfeldt (California).

 

Joining those teams in the Top 5 are Florida's Billy Federhofer and Nassim Slilam, who upset King and Spir in the quarterfinals of the USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships.

 

Besides a win over Federhofer and Slilam, the only thing missing for Buchanan and Rola this fall was a title at the USTA/ITA Midwest Regional Championships. That's because Buckeyes' Head Coach Ty Tucker paired his stars with different players. Buchanan and Peter Kobelt defeated Rola and Connor Smith in the final.

 

Coincidentally, the men's and women's doubles champions from the Northeast Region each jumped to No. 11 after not appearing in September's preseason rankings. Princeton's Matt Siow and Matt Spindler backed up their Regional title by winning the consolation draw at the USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships, while Boston College's Alex Kelleher and Olga Khmylev defeated the fourth-ranked Boxx and Guthrie to reach the quarterfinals in Flushing.

 

Several talented players expected to compete during the spring are unranked because of inactivity during the fall, including Bradley Klahn of Stanford and defending NCAA singles champion Steve Johnson of USC. Marta Lesniak of SMU, winner of the USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships, graduated in December and will not be returning for the spring season according to Mustangs' Coach Cosmin Cotet

 

In addition to the national rankings, Top 20 singles and Top 10 doubles rankings are available for each of the 12 regions on ITAtennis.com.

Frank Rankings
Mitchell Frank photo by Gene Boyers

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