VU men, women receive NCAA tennis invitations

Tuesday, April 29, 2008 at 4:04pm

Taking on the Hoosier state is the first order of tournament business for the Vanderbilt tennis teams.

The Commodores received invitations on Tuesday to both the NCAA 64-team men and women’s tournaments which open next weekend, May 9-11, at home sites.

The Vanderbilt women (18-5) received their 14th consecutive bid under coach Geoff Macdonald and will host a region for the 10th straight year.

The No. 11 seed Commodores will take on Indiana State in their first match Friday, May 9 at 1 p.m. on the Commodore courts. Kentucky and Boise State meet at 10 a.m., with the winners clashing Saturday at noon.

“We are delighted to host a region once again,’’ Macdonald said. “I don’t know much about Indiana State, they are a team that is sneaky good, someone a little under the radar.

“If we win that, it will be a war against Kentucky, we had a really tough match with them about two weeks ago, we won 5-2, but every match was close.’’

Winners of first and second-round matches in both men and women’s play advance to the Sweet 16, where both tournaments will be held at Tulsa, Okla., beginning May 15.

Nine SEC teams were invited each to both the men and women’s tournaments.

“It just shows the strength of the SEC,’’ Macdonald said. “If we can beat Kentucky, we have to play (No. 6) Florida to get where we want to be.’’

“I’m thrilled that we are getting to host again, particularly my senior year,’’ said All-SEC player Amanda Taylor, who is 5-0 over the past three years in NCAA tournament singles matches, without the loss of a set.

“It’s an opportunity for our fans to come out and see us in our last home matches,’’ said Taylor who, with a No. 23 ranking, is a lock for an NCAA singles invite when those bids go out today.

The No. 29 ranked Vanderbilt men (13-9), led by ace and All-SEC player Amanda Taylor, got a bid for the second straight year and travel to Oxford, Miss., for their region. The Commodores meet Indiana’s Hoosiers in their opener May 10 at 11 a.m., followed by host and No. 5 seed Ole Miss vs. Marist. Winners clash May 11.

“I don’t know much about Indiana, except I know they beat Michigan last week, which shows me they are dangerous,’’ said coach Ian Duvenhage. “Lately, we have been woeful in doubles and have had to pull out four of our six singles matches to win. To be successful, we’re going to have to lift up our doubles play.’’

Last year, Vanderbilt upset Tulsa, before losing to host LSU.

• On Monday, the Vanderbilt women’s golf team received a No. 9 seed and will compete in the NCAA East Regional in Athens, Ga. May 8-10. The top eight finishers advance to NCAA nationals May 20-23. The Commodores, who won the East Region last year, are led by junior Jacqui Concolino.

NCAA Women’s Regional

At Vanderbilt Currey courts

Friday, May 9: 10 a.m.-- Kentucky-Boise State; 1 p.m. -- Vanderbilt-Indiana State.

Saturday, May 10: Noon—Winners meet, second round.

Tickets: $5 general admission, $3 VU students.

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