USC Women, Oklahoma Men Rank No. 1 in ITA National Team Rankings
Strong week vaults Trojans over Tar Heels
SKILLMAN, NJ (March 24) - The Oklahoma Sooner men remain No. 1 for the fourth-consecutive week while the USC Trojan women propelled themselves to the top of the rankings from No. 7 this week after scoring wins over conference rivals No. 3 California and No. 10 Stanford. Southern California, now 14-2, has seven wins over teams ranked in the Top 14 of the rankings, including two over California, two over Pepperdine, and against Stanford, Vanderbilt and Michigan. USC is the third team to be ranked No. 1 this spring, joining UCLA and North Carolina.
The 18-0 North Carolina Tar Heels continued their winning ways this week, defeating Wake Forest and Syracuse in conference play, but they could not match USC's point total and thus fell to No. 2.
No. 3 California and No. 4 UCLA lend a west coast vibe to the top of the rankings. California beat UCLA for the second time this season but also suffered a second loss to USC. UCLA rebounded from the loss to California and took out No. 13 Stanford. The Florida Gators, who are 15-1 this season with their only loss coming against North Carolina, defeated Ole Miss and Mississippi State this week but fell three spots behind USC, California and UCLA to No. 5.
Elsewhere in the Top 25, two perennial contenders are making their way back up the rankings. Texas A&M rose 15 spots this week to No. 15, cracking the Top 25 for the first time in over a month. The Aggies beat No. 6 Baylor, No. 9 Alabama and No. 49 Auburn this week and are riding a five-match win streak. Texas A&M hosts No. 5 Florida today at 2 p.m. Central time.
Also on the rise are the Duke Blue Devils, who moved from No. 24 to No. 17 this week after upsetting No. 8 Virginia. Duke is 6-0 in March after going 2-5 in February.
On the men's side, Oklahoma added to its resume by winning a trio of matches and capturing the title at the BNP Paribas Open Collegiate Challenge, presented by Oracle. The Sooners posted their second win over No. 3 Baylor in just over a month, and also registered victories against No. 28 Columbia and Purdue. Only two of Oklahoma's 17 wins have come against unranked opponents.
Up next for the Sooners are the TCU Horned Frogs, who vaulted eight spots up the rankings to No. 10 after recording five wins in a seven-day span. The Horned Frogs notably swept No. 4 Illinois last Monday, their second win over a Top 10 team in 2015. The Illini spent the rest of last week at No. 2, but fell to No. 3 this week. Sliding into the No. 2 spot is Baylor for the second time this season, as the Bears ousted No. 4 USC at the BNP Paribas Open Collegiate Challenge, presented by Oracle, before their loss to the top-ranked Sooners.
Another big riser has emerged from the Lone Star State in Texas A&M-Corpus Christi. The Islanders began this season with a 3-3 record but have since rattled off seven straight wins, surging from outside to Top 75 on March 3 to No. 40 this week, and were crowned champions at the 49th Annual HEB Tournament of Champions earlier this month. The Islanders have turned in ranked victories over South Alabama and a second triumph over UTSA since winning the HEB tournament, which helped propel them up 15 spots in this week's rankings.
In singles, two new players topped the rankings this week with UCLA's Robin Anderson becoming the fourth different player to rank No. 1 in the ITA Division I National Women's Singles Rankings this season. The 2014 Riviera/ITA Women's All-American Singles Champion beat No. 3 Carol Zhao and No. 4 Maegan Manasse over the weekend and has just one loss this season. Texas' Søren Hess-Olesen moved to No. 1 in the ITA Division I National Men's Singles Rankings, also becoming the fourth player to top the rankings this spring. The Longhorn senior is in the midst of a 17-match winning streak, with his last loss coming in October.
UCLA's Catherine Harrison and Kyle McPhillips reclaimed the No. 1 spot in the ITA Division I National Women's Doubles Rankings, while Georgia's Austin Smith and Ben Wagland are the top-ranked duo in the ITA Division I National Men's Doubles Rankings for the first time in 2014-15.
Conference Count: Men's Top 25: ACC, Big 12 and SEC - 6; Big Ten - 3; Pac-12 - 2; AAC and WCC - 1.
Women's Top 25: SEC - 7; ACC and Pac-12 - 5; Big 12 - 4; Big Ten - 2; MVC and WCC - 1.
Coming Up Next: The ITA Division I National Team Rankings will be released next on March 31. Complete ITA College Tennis Rankings can be found here.
|ITA Division I Rankings|
|Men's Top 25||Previous||Women's Top 25||Previous|
|1||University of Oklahoma||1||1||University of Southern California||7|
|2||Baylor University||3||2||North Carolina||1|
|3||University of Illinois||2||3||California||3|
|5||University of Georgia||5||5||University of Florida||2|
|6||University of Southern California||4||6||University of Georgia||4|
|7||University of Texas||8||7||Baylor University||6|
|8||University of Virginia||9||8||University of Virginia||8|
|9||Texas A&M University||7||9||University of Alabama||9|
|11||Ohio State University||11||11||Oklahoma State University||11|
|12||Wake Forest University||12||12||University of Michigan||13|
|13||University of Mississippi||13||13||Stanford||10|
|15||UCLA||19||15||Texas A&M University||30|
|16||Virginia Tech||16||16||University of Miami (Florida)||14|
|17||Vanderbilt University||17||17||Duke University||24|
|18||University of South Florida||21||18||University of Kentucky||20|
|19||Northwestern University||14||19||Clemson University||15|
|20||University of Florida||15||20||TCU||21|
|21||University of San Diego||30||21||University of Mississippi||17|
|22||Oklahoma State University||31||22||Ohio State University||22|
|23||University of Louisville||26||23||Texas Tech University||18|
|24||Louisiana State University||23||24||Arizona State University||19|
|25||Texas Tech University||24||25||Wichita State University||25|
About the ITA Rankings
As the governing body of college tennis, the ITA administers the ITA College Tennis Rankings (Singles, Doubles, and Team) that are designed to track the top men and women teams and singles and doubles players in NCAA Divisions I, II, III, NAIA, Junior Colleges and California Junior Colleges. For full rankings information, please visit www.itatennis.com/AwardsAndRankings/Rankings.htm.