April 28, 2015
— Georgia Tech Sports (@GTAthletics) April 28, 2015
THE FLATS – Georgia Tech’s men’s tennis team, coming off a strong performance in the ACC Championship in which it defeated two top-35 teams, received an at-large bid to the NCAA’s 64-team championship field Tuesday. The Yellow Jackets will travel to Oxford, Miss., May 8-9 along with host Ole Miss, Columbia and Alabama State.
REGIONAL INFORMATION – The Yellow Jackets will face Ivy League automatic qualifier Columbia (14-5) in the opening round at 1 p.m. Eastern time Friday, May 8, while the host Rebels (17-8) will meet SWAC automatic qualifier Alabama State (12-15). The two winners will square off in the second round at 2 p.m. Saturday, May 9, with that winner advancing to the round of 16, beginning May 14 at the Hurd Tennis Center on the campus of Baylor University in Waco, Texas.
Ole Miss is ranked 13th nationally, while Columbia is No. 20. The Yellow Jackets are familiar with the Lions, who participated in Tech’s MLK Invitational in mid-January. Tech won five of nine singles matches between the two teams, but Columbia won all three doubles matches. Tech is 3-0 all-time against the Lions in dual matches, with the last meeting occurring in 1971. The Jackets last met Ole Miss in 1988 and are 1-3 against the Rebels. This is Tech’s second trip to Oxford for an NCAA regional, having lost to Auburn in the opening round there in 2003.
The 64-team field includes 31 automatic qualifiers as conference champions and 33 at-large teams. Oklahoma is the No. 1 overall seed and one of the 16 hosts along with Baylor, Duke, Georgia, Illinois, North Carolina, Ohio State, Ole Miss, Southern California, Texas, Texas A&M, TCU, UCLA, Virginia, Virginia Tech and Wake Forest.
TEAM UPDATE – Georgia Tech (14-12, 4-8 ACC), No. 55 in the most recent ITA rankings, finished the regular season in 10th place in the Atlantic Coast Conference after knocking off 8th-ranked Duke in the regular season finale. But the Yellow Jackets advanced to the semifinals of the ACC Championship, defeating No. 35 Notre Dame, 4-0, in the opening round, then upending No. 14 Virginia Tech, 4-3, in the quarterfinals. No. 11 Wake Forest eliminated Tech, 4-0, in the semifinals.
TECH NCAA HISTORY – Georgia Tech has made the NCAA Championship field for the 11th time under head coach Kenny Thorne and the 15th time in program history. Tech is the field for the first time since 2011, when the Yellow Jackets advanced out of the regional in Atlanta to the round of 16 before being eliminated. That is the only time Tech has made it out of a regional in the current format of the championship. The Jackets’ deepest run in the NCAAs came in 1994, when Tech won three matches before being eliminated. Tech is 9-14 all-time in NCAA Championship competition.
HEAD COACH Kenny Thorne SAYS – “I’m thrilled for these guys. The way they finished the season was absolutely incredible. They deserve so much credit, and we’re so excited to be back in the dance. Tournament time is awesome, because you win, you advance. You lose, you go home, and that adds some intensity to every match. We said after we beat Duke that we had a lot of work to do, and now we sit here again and say we have a lot of work to do.”
ABOUT GEORGIA TECH MEN’S TENNIS
Georgia Tech’s men’s tennis team is in its 17th year under head coach Kenny Thorne. The Yellow Jackets have played in the NCAA Championship 14 times. Connect with Georgia Tech Men’s Tennis on social media by liking their Facebook page, or following on Twitter (@GT_MTEN). For more information on Tech men’s tennis, visit Ramblinwreck.com.