Women's tennis opens the season ranked 73rd

Jan. 9, 2008

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - With the start of the regular season just three weeks away, the JU women's tennis learned Wednesday that they had earned a national ranking.

The Dolphins enter the 2008 season ranked 73rd in the country in the first Intercollegiate Tennis Association ranking, reflecting the Dolphins success last year in winning the Atlantic Sun Conference regular season and tournament titles.

Jacksonville made its first NCAA Tournament appearance last year and lost in the first round to Florida.

"We are excited to begin the 2008 season with the honor of a top 75 national ranking," said first year JU head coach Shane Wood. "The ladies had some tremendous results in the fall tournament season despite having an inconsistent practice and playing schedule due to the coaching change. They are also defending A-Sun champs and are excited about the challenge of trying to repeat as champions. Being No. 73 is nice, but we will look to better our position in the rankings and defend the Atlantic Sun championship this spring."

Jacksonville returns five of its six starters from last year's title team. Lena Willi headlines the group after an impressive fall campaign that followed a stellar junior season at the No. 2 position.

Joining Willi in returning for the Dolphins is a talented sophomore class of Iva Jaresova, Fernanda Carrero, Tatiana Soldatova.

Freshman Lina Xu will also make an impact after an impressive fall campaign.

The Dolphins open the 2008 season on Jan. 26 at Florida State.