May 9, 2013
NASHVILLE – Vanderbilt is set to begin NCAA Tournament play Friday, May 10, at 2 p.m. CT, versus the East Tennessee State Buccaneers at the Currey Tennis Center.
The Commodores enter the regional as the No. 1 seed and No. 16 overall seed in the tournament, while ETSU comes to Nashville as the No. 4 seed in the regional. Vanderbilt is 16-10 this season and ETSU is 13-6. The winner will advance to Saturday’s second round match versus the winner of Illinois and Georgia State at 2 p.m. CT. Illinois and Georgia State meet at 11 a.m. Friday in the first match of the day.
Vanderbilt in the NCAA Tournament
The Commodores are making their 12th appearance in the NCAA Tournament and seventh under current head coach Ian Duvenhage. Vanderbilt’s best NCAA Tournament run came in 2003 when the Commodores fell in the championship match to Illinois, 4-3. Last season, Vanderbilt was knocked out in the first round by Notre Dame in Columbus, Ohio. This marks the first meeting with ETSU in the NCAA Tournament. Should the Commodores advance to the second round, they would face either Illinois or Georgia State. Vanderbilt has faced Illinois three times in the postseason with Illinois winning all three matches. VU has never faced Georgia State in the tournament.
- Ryan Lipman leads Vanderbilt with 28 singles victories this season.
- Lipman is 6-5 this season versus ranked players and 18-6 in dual play.
- Kris Yee ranks second on the team with 24 wins on the season.
- Yee also leads the team with a 19-2 record in dual play this season.
- Three Commodores (Lipman, Yee and Gonzales Austin) have at least 20 wins on the season in singles.
- Lipman and Austin are ranked Nos. 10 and 48 in the ITA Singles Rankings.
- Lipman and Austin were named to the All-SEC First Team, while Yee earned All-Freshman Team honors.
- Vanderbilt is one of 14 schools that have both their men’s and women’s programs ranked inside the top 25.
- The Commodores are one of nine SEC schools to have both their men’s and women’s tennis teams in the NCAA Tournament.
About No. 2 seed Illinois (16-10)
Illinois went 16-10 this spring with an 8-3 Big Ten mark. In addition, the Illini secured two signature wins over No. 5 Duke and No. 7 Kentucky at home. The Fighting Illini men's tennis squad will be appearing in the NCAA Tournament field for the 18th straight season. Illinois is 38-16 all-time in the tournament, including a national championship back in 2003. Jared Hiltzik ranks No. 32 in the ITA singles rankings to lead the Illini. In doubles, Tim Kopinski and Ross Guignon are the 16th-ranked duo in the country, while Kopinski and Farris Gosea rank 75th.
About No. 3 seed Georgia State (15-10)
Georgia State (15-10) jumped back into the team rankings following an upset victory over No. 49-ranked MTSU in the Sun Belt Conference Championship final. The 4-3 comeback win secured a berth for Georgia State in the 2013 NCAA Men’s Tennis Tournament as an automatic qualifier. Victor Valente leads the Panthers as the No. 63-ranked player in the most recent ITA singles rankings. Valente is also ranked in doubles with Lucas Santa Ana at No. 60.
About No. 4 seed East Tennessee State (13-6)
ETSU makes its seventh consecutive trip and 11th overall to the NCAA Tournament. ETSU head coach Yaser Zaatini has led ETSU to nine of those appearances with his first as head coach coming in 2004. The Buccaneers have two wins in NCAA Tournament history, defeating Alabama in 2010 and Notre Dame in 2008. Three players have at least 20 singles victories for the Bucs, led by Rogerio Ribeiro’s 29-11 overall record.
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The winner of the Nashville Regional will advance to the NCAA Championships in Urbana, Ill., May 17-21, at the Khan Outdoor Tennis Complex hosted by the University of Illinois.