Rebels Earn 21st Straight NCAA Bid
The Ole Miss men’s tennis team earned its 21st consecutive NCAA Championship bid and will continue its season in South Bend, Ind., for the NCAA first and second rounds, as the field of 64 was revealed Tuesday.
The Rebels will face Northwestern in the first round either May 9 or 10, with the time to be announced. Notre Dame is the No. 13 overall seed, and will meet Green-Bay in the first round. The winners will meet in the second round for the right to advance to the NCAA Sweet 16 in Athens, Ga., May 16-21.
This marks the 23rd overall appearance for Ole Miss, all coming under head coach Billy Chadwick, who announced his retirement at the end of the season. The Rebels have made it every year since 1994.
“It’s always exciting to hear your name called, and we are really looking forward to going up to Notre Dame,” head coach Billy Chadwick said. “We’ve got a tough first round with Northwestern, but the guys are peaking at the right time, everybody is healthy and everybody is working hard. I like what I see.”
The Rebels, led by SEC Player of the Year, Nik Scholtz, picked up some big wins at the end of the season and in the SEC Tournament to close strong and keep the NCAA streak alive. Having beaten No. 8 Texas A&M and No. 20 Tennessee down the stretch, the Rebels are excited about the opportunity that awaits.
“We are really excited about our draw,” Scholtz said. “We definitely got one that’s beatable, and we’re going to work really hard these next two weeks to prepare for it. We faced some challenges at the end of the season, and I am really proud of the guys for stepping up and taking us to the NCAA Tournament.”
Northwestern, ranked No. 32 in the nation, ended the regular season 21-10 with a 4-0 loss to Ohio State in the semifinals of the Big Ten Tournament. The Wildcats are led by 46th-ranked Raleigh Smith, who is 13-10 at No. 1 singles.
Stay tuned to @OleMissMTennis for updates on the exact day and time of the match.
–Ole Miss Sports Information
Rebels Grab Sixth Consecutive NCAA Berth
The Ole Miss women’s tennis team earned its sixth consecutive and 17th overall NCAA Championship bid and will travel to Los Angeles for the first and second rounds. The Rebels will face Texas Tech in the first round Friday, May 9 at 12 p.m. CT.
The host Bruins of UCLA will meet Sacramento State in the other first round match. The winners will play Saturday, May 10 at 5 p.m. CT for the right to advance to the NCAA Sweet Sixteen May 16-21 in Athens, Ga.
“It’s exciting to go somewhere besides Georgia Tech,” said head coach Mark Beyers, jokingly referring to his team’s three straight NCAA trips to Atlanta from 2009-11. “We are proud of the girls; they’ve worked really hard this year. They definitely earned this NCAA bid.”
Ole Miss finished the regular season with a 13-9 overall record. The Rebels are led by junior Julia Jones, who earned All-SEC second team honors last week. The St. Petersburg, Fla., native posted a 26-10 overall record, 15-6 in dual matches. She went 8-5 in the SEC in singles and 7-3 in doubles. In her 26 wins, Jones has not dropped a set.
“We are excited to go to Los Angeles and play Texas Tech,” said junior Iris Verboven, who owns an 8-3 record at No. 6 singles this year for the Rebels. “We went there last year [for NCAAs], but we didn’t play Texas Tech. We’ve had some good practices since the SEC Tournament, and we are looking forward to playing again.”
Texas Tech, ranked No. 30 in the nation, finished the regular season with a 17-8 overall record. The Lady Raiders upset No. 18 Oklahoma at the Big 12 Championships. Lynn Kiro (28-6), Nikki Sanders (26-10) and Samantha Adams (22-11) have each won 20 matches this season to pace Texas Tech. Kiro is currently riding a 15-match winning streak.
–Ole Miss Sports Information
Ole Miss Tennis Teams Grab NCAA Tourney Bids