May 3, 2016
THE FLATS – Georgia Tech’s men’s tennis team, in the midst of its best season since 2011, has received an at-large bid to the NCAA’s 64-team championship, which was announced Tuesday. The Yellow Jackets will travel to Los Angeles, Calif., the weekend of May 13-15 along with UC Santa Barbara and UNLV where Southern California will host one of the NCAA’s 16 regionals.
TEAM UPDATE — Georgia Tech (16-8, 8-4 ACC) is ranked No. 33 in this week’s Intercollegiate Tennis Association rankings, and posted its best conference record since 2011, is in the NCAA Championship for the second straight year, finishing the regular season in fifth place. The Yellow Jackets went 11-1 at home, with the only loss to No. 1 Virginia, and went 1-1 in the ACC Championship.
REGIONAL INFORMATION — The Yellow Jackets will face the Big West automatic qualifier Gauchos (17-6), ranked 46th in the nation, in the opening round Friday, May 13, at 1 p.m. Eastern time, while Mountain West champion UNLV (15-9) takes on host USC (15-6) afterward at 4 p.m. ET. The winners will face off at 4 p.m. ET Saturday, May 14, for the right to advance to the NCAA Championship round of 16, which begins May 19 in Tulsa, Okla. The Trojans are the overall No. 10 seed and are ranked 11th in the most recent ITA rankings.
All 16 regionals will take place the weekend of May 13-15, with the survivor or each moving on to the NCAA Championship site.
The 64-team field includes 31 automatic qualifiers as conference champions and 33 at-large teams. Virginia is the No. 1 overall seed and one of the 16 hosts along with (in order of national seed) North Carolina, UCLA, TCU, Ohio State, Wake Forest, Georgia, Texas Tech, Florida, Oklahoma, Texas A&M, California, Northwestern, Illinois and Oklahoma State.
TECH NCAA HISTORY — Georgia Tech (16-8, 8-4 ACC) has made the NCAA Championship field for the 12th time under head coach Kenny Thorne and the 16th time in program history. Tech is the field for the second straight year, having been eliminated in the opening round last year by Columbia in Oxford, Miss. Under the current format of the championship, Tech has made it to the round of 16 at the championship site only once, in 2011. The Jackets’ deepest run in the NCAAs came in 1994, when Tech won three matches before being eliminated. Tech is 9-15 all-time in NCAA Championship competition.
HEAD COACH Kenny Thorne SAYS — “I didn’t look at it too closely, and I’ve stopped trying to predict. But it’s a good thing (to be heading to the West coast). This is about a good NCAA experience, and I think traveling that far will be a positive thing. These are all teams we don’t know as well, and they don’t know us. Obviously they’re all good. Santa Barbara won their conference title. We’ll get moving on our homework this week.”
ABOUT GEORGIA TECH MEN’S TENNIS
Georgia Tech’s men’s tennis team is in its 18th year under head coach Kenny Thorne. The Yellow Jackets have played in the NCAA Championship 15 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.