January 31st, 2017
Gator Teams Only Florida Survivors from ITA Kick-Off Weekend, Advance to Indoor Nationals
The University of Florida women’s and men’s teams were the sole state-of-Florida survivors at last weekend’s 9th annual ITA Kick-Off Weekend, Jan. 27-29, 2017, which took place at 23 Division I tennis facilities across the country.
The winning regional men’s and women’s team each advanced to next month’s ITA Division I National Team Indoor Championships at Yale (women’s) and Virginia (men’s).
In women’s play at the Florida Regional in Gainesville, the University of Florida cruised through to indoor nationals qualification, defeating DePaul 6-1 in their opener, then in the championship match downing Florida International 4-0. South Florida won their consolation match, defeating DePaul 4-2 after losing to Florida International in their semifinals 4-0.
The Florida State University women were blanked 4-0 by No. 7-seeded Ohio State at the Ohio State Regional, putting them out of national indoors contention. The Seminole women bounced back to win their consolation match, defeating Harvard 4-1.
The University of Miami women were also eliminated, but in heartbreaking fashion in a final that was delayed until Monday due to rain. Hosting the Miami Regional, the No. 12-seeded Hurricanes defeated Brown 4-0 in their first match, and on Monday fell to No. 22 seed Texas A&M 4-2.
“We simply didn’t show up at two positions today, I didn’t think, physically or mentally,” Miami head coach Paige Yaroshuk-Tews said. “To beat a team like this, you have to show up at every position and even when you do, it’s going to be anybody’s match. They’ve got some older kids on their team. The better team won today, that’s the bottom line.”
The Florida men powered through the Florida Regional in Gainesville, blanking UNC Wilmington 4-0 in their opener, and in the championship match cruising past Louisiana State University 4-0.
“It’s a new year and a new team, and we are going to really enjoy this season,” said head coach Bryan Shelton, who also has the No. 2-ranked recruiting class currently for next year. “I thought our guys competed hard this weekend and I’m glad that we have guaranteed ourselves a trip to the national team indoors…I also want to thank our fans and boosters for supporting us on this chilly weekend.”
LSU in their semifinal upset No. 24 University of South Florida 4-3. USF in the consolation match defeated UNC Wilmington 4-0.
The Florida State men lost their opener in the Texas Tech Regional, falling to No. 20 Mississippi State 4-3. In the consolation match they defeated Texas Tech 4-1.
For full results go to www.itatennis.com/Events/Kick-OffWeekend.htm.