SALEM, Va. – The Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) released its 2010 preseason men’s and women’s tennis coaches polls on Friday morning. The W&L women were picked to win the league, while the men were selected to finish second.
In the women’s poll, the Generals received all 11 first-place votes for a total of 121 points. They were followed by Bridgewater (90), Virginia Wesleyan (84), Hollins (83), Sweet Briar (77), Roanoke (72), Emory & Henry (57), Guilford (54), Randolph-Macon (51), Randolph (20) and Lynchburg (17).
Hampden-Sydney topped the men’s poll with 96 points and six first-place votes. The Generals received four first-place votes and totaled 94 points for second place. Bridgewater was third with 75 points and was followed by Roanoke (73), Emory & Henry (56), Guilford (50), Randolph-Macon (38), Lynchburg (30), Virginia Wesleyan (28) and Randolph (10).
During the 2010 season, W&L women will be seeking their eighth-straight championship. The Generals went 20-5 overall and 10-0 in the ODAC last season and they enter the spring ranked fifth in Division III according to the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) poll. W&L is led by senior Blair Brzeski (Westlake Village, Calif./Agoura) and sophomores Ellen Yeatman (Little Rock, Ark./Little Rock Central) and Jen Snyder (Highland Heights, Ohio/Gilmour Academy).
Brzeski is ranked ninth in the ITA Atlantic South Region Singles Rankings and she teams with Yeatman to form the 15th-ranked doubles team. Brzeski finished the 2009 season with an 11-1 singles record and an 8-0 doubles mark. Yeatman is ranked 17th in the region in singles after earning ODAC Rookie of the Year laurels last year when she finished 13-7 in singles and 14-4 in doubles. Snyder went 15-5 in singles and 7-0 in doubles a year ago and she enters the spring 23rd in the regional rankings.
The W&L men saw a string of 13-straight conference titles come to an end in last’s season’s title match won by Hampden-Sydney, 5-3. The Generals finished the 2009 season with a 15-6 overall record and a 9-0 ODAC mark. They will enter the spring of 2010 ranked 24th in the ITA Division III poll led by first-year Hayden White (Baltimore, Md./Towson), who is fifth in the ITA Division III National Singles Rankings. White won the ITA Atlantic South Region Singles Championship en route to finishing fourth at the ITA Small College Singles Championships during the fall. He currently has a 10-4 singles record and a 2-2 doubles mark for the year.
The men also return 2009 ODAC Co-Rookie of the Year Jeremy Becht (Woodstock, Ga./Etowah), who was 19-8 in singles and 14-9 in doubles competition last year.
Both squads have already begun their spring seasons and the women will return to the courts on Thursday as they participate in the ITA Indoor Collegiate Championships hosted by DePauw University on Feb. 25-28. The men will open with Johns Hopkins on Thursday at 5:00 pm. The men will play again on February 26 as they play host to Randolph-Macon (4:00 pm) and Virginia Wesleyan (6:30 pm).
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