Seven PBC Men’s Tennis Teams Receive NCAA Tournament Berths
INDIANAPOLIS, IND – Seven Peach
Belt Conference men’s tennis teams earned spots in the 2011
NCAA Championships as the 48-team field was announced by the NCAA
national office. The southeast region will be split into two
preliminary round sites, hosted by overall #1 seed Armstrong
Atlantic State and #2 seed Columbus State. Flagler and
Augusta State will be playing at the AASU regional in Savannah
while Georgia College, Lander and Francis Marion will travel to
Columbus. The winner of each preliminary round tournament
will advance to the 16-team national finals in Orlando.
The regionals will begin on Sunday, May 1, and conclude on Tuesday, May 3. The national championships at Sanlando Park in Altamonte Springs, Fla., begin on Wednesday, May 11.
The Pirates (24-0) are the No. 1 seed in the Southeast Regional and will face the winner of Queens (NC) and Anderson on Monday, May 2, at 10:00 a.m. in one regional semifinal match. The other semifinal match pits No. 4 seed Flagler (11-7) against No. 5 seed Augusta State (16-8), also at 10:00 a.m. on Monday. Armstrong Atlantic State won the national championship in both 2008 and 2009.
Augusta State will be making their 10th all-time appearance at the NCAA regionals and eighth in the last 12 years. For Flagler, this marks the third consecutive season the men’s team has been selected for an NCAA regional tournament. In 2009, the Saints went 1-1 in the South Regional and last year went 1-1 in the Southeast Regional.
Flagler (11-7 overall), the No. 4 seed, faced Augusta State twice this season, both at Augusta, and the team split the matches. The Saints won the first time out 7-2 (Feb. 20), but the Jaguars knocked them out of the Peach Belt Conference Championships 5-4 in the semifinals (Apr. 16). The Saints are led by David Cotrone who is ranked No. 3 in NCAA Division II. He and Gino Ramirez form the nation’s No. 5-ranked doubles team.
Augusta State (16-8) is the No. 5 seed in the tournament. The Jaguars have gone 7-3 in their last 10 matches and advanced to the PBC Tournament championship match for the frist time in school history. Bernardo Fernandes is ranked No. 22, nationally, in singles play while the doubles team of Fernandes and Henrique Boturao are ranked No. 13 in the country.
For Columbus State, this is the 12th all-time selection for the Cougars who are coming off a remarkable run a year ago in which they advanced to the national semifinals for the first time in school history. The Cougars will face Peach Belt Conference foe and No. 7 Georgia College in the opening round on Sunday, May 1 at 1:00 p.m. at the Mary V. Blackmon Tennis Center on the Columbus State campus. CSU defeated the Bobcats earlier in the year cruising to a 9-0 win dropping just two sets in the match.
14th-ranked Francis Marion (10-7) earns an invitation for the fourth year in a row and the 15th time in the past 17 seasons. Francis Marion will face long-time rival Lander University (16-5) in one first-round match. The Bearcats are ranked 11th and defeated FMU 7-2 back on Feb. 18 in the two squads' regular-season match. AASU Bracket (PDF) | CSU Bracket (PDF) | NCAA Men's Tennis Page
NCAA Men’s Tennis Southeast Region #1
Hosted by Armstrong Atlantic State
Sunday, May 1
Queens vs. Anderson
Monday, May 2
Flagler vs. Augusta State, 10:00 am
Queens/Anderson at Armstrong Atlantic State, 10:00 am
Tuesday, May 3
Championship Match, 10:00 am
NCAA Men’s Tennis Southeast Region #2
Hosted by Columbus State
Sunday, May 1
Lander vs. Francis Marion, 9:00 am
Georgia College at Columbus State, 1:00 pm
Monday, May 2
Championship Match, 3:00