Patriots Flood First ITA Rankings of the Season

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

SKILLMAN, N.J. - After a busy fall season, The University of Texas at Tyler tennis teams found themselves all over the first set of national and regional rankings released by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association for the 2008-2009 season.

Both UT Tyler teams were ranked in the national and regional polls, while nine Patriots were ranked as singles, doubles or both.

In the women’s rankings, the Patriots came in at 29th as a team nationally and fifth regionally.

Senior Beth Launius (LaGrange, Texas) and sophomore Michelle Hagler (Austin, Texas) will enter the 2009 season as the No. 2 team in the West Region. The duo won the ITA Southwest Regional earlier this year and went on to finish sixth in the Division III portion of the Small College National Championships.

As singles players, Launius was ranked 10th, while Hagler finished 10 spots behind her partner at 20th.

Launius and Hagler were joined on the regional rankings by another Patriot duo, that of junior Brittany Ude (Corpus Christi, Texas) and sophomore Lauren Giovannini (Dallas, Texas), who came in at 11th. Individually, Giovannini broke into the regional rankings at 21st.

On the men’s side, the Patriots were ranked as the 21st best team in the nation and the sixth best team in the region. Sophomore Robert Sajovich (Austin, Texas) was the lone representative for the men on the National singles rankings, coming in at 19th.

Regionally, Sajovich was ranked fifth as a singles player, while senior Dustin Phillips (Houston, Texas) finished just three spots behind Sajovich at eighth. Junior David Ashlock (Arlington, Texas) rounded out the three Patriots on the region singles list at 18th.

In the doubles rankings, Phillips and Ashlock came in at seventh, while Sajovich and his partner, freshman Andrew Reznik (Southlake, Texas), were ranked 13th.

Both Patriot squads will kick off the 2009 season in a big way on February 14, by hosting a combined five matches at the Summers Tennis Center.

Both teams open their 2009 campaigns by taking on American Southwest Conference West Division foe, Schreiner, at 9:00 a.m.

The women will finish their day by facing off against Ouachita Baptist at 1:30 p.m., followed by Henderson St., at 6:00 p.m. The men will take on Southeastern Oklahoma between the two women’s matches at 4:30 p.m.