Jan. 24, 2013
NASHVILLE – No. 39 Vanderbilt will face No. 6 Georgia Friday at 1 p.m. CT in the ITA Kick-Off Weekend at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex in Athens, Ga. The Commodores will be the No. 4 seed in the Athens Regional, while Georgia is the No. 1 seed. The match will not be a conference dual and will not factor into SEC play.
No. 32 VCU (No. 2 seed) will play No. 34 Minnesota (No. 3 seed) in the first match of the day at 9 a.m. Vanderbilt will either play Minnesota or VCU on Saturday in the final match of the ITA Kick-Off Weekend.
About the ITA Kick-Off
The annual ITA Kickoff Weekend features 15 host sites with four teams at each site vying to advance to the 2013 National Team Indoor Championships. The 15 teams that win their two matches this weekend will be invited to play in the ITA National Team Indoor Championships Feb. 15-18 in Seattle. Host University of Washington will earn an automatic bid to round out the 16-team field.
The other 14 regional sites are Southern Cal, Virginia, UCLA, Ohio State, Pepperdine, Kentucky, Duke, Stanford, Oklahoma, Mississippi State, Florida, California, Ole Miss, and Illinois.
Last Time Out
Vanderbilt dropped to then-ranked No. 52 Michigan State, 6-1, on Sunday, Jan. 20 at the Currey Tennis Center. Gonzales Austin and Suresh Eswaran won the lone doubles match of the contest, while Ryan Lipman recorded the only win in singles play. No. 17 Lipman defeated Drew Lied, 6-2, 6-3 to improve to 2-0 in dual matches so far this spring.
About Georgia (No. 1 Seed)
The sixth-ranked Bulldogs enter the weekend having yet to play a dual match this season. Three of Georgia’s top four singles players from a year ago are gone but the Bulldogs remain one of the nation’s elite programs. All three of Georgia’s returning starters are ranked inside the top 20 with KU Singh leading the way at No. 8 after an impressive fall season that was highlighted with a semifinal appearance at the ITA Men’s All-American Championship. Georgia also boasts the nation’s fifth best doubles team in Ben Wagland and Hernus Pieters.
About VCU (No. 2 seed)
Virginia Commonwealth enters the weekend ranked No. 32 - the second-highest in the field - and sporting a 4-0 record after a strong showing at the VCU 4x1 Invitational last week, where it’s victories came over Campbell (4-0), Georgetown (5-0), Richmond (5-0) and James Madison (4-1). The Rams are led by a trio of players in the singles poll, including Max Wennakoski at No. 45, Alexis Heugas at No. 67 and Jamie Vazquez Catoira at No. 113.
About Minnesota (No. 3 seed)
The Golden Gophers are ranked No. 34 heading into the Kickoff Weekend, and stand at 1-0 following a season-opening 6-1 win over Northern Illinois Jan. 20. Minnesota is led by Ruben Weber's 8-2 record, followed by a mark of 8-4 for Leandro Toledo and 9-4 for Rok Bonin.
Schedule of Play
Fri, Jan 25– VCU vs. Minnesota, 9:00 a.m.
Fri, Jan 25– Georgia vs. Vanderbilt, 2:00 p.m.
Sat, Jan 26– Consolation Match, 9:00 a.m.
Sat, Jan 26– Championship Match, 2:00 p.m.**
**Georgia will play the 2 p.m. match win or lose
The Commodores return home for a dual match versus Middle Tennessee State on Feb. 1, at the Currey Tennis Center.