By Jed Flemming, Athletic Communications and Media Intern
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – (Bracket) The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) has officially released the bracket for the 2018 NAIA Women's Tennis National Championship, May 15 - 19 in Mobile, Ala. The 38th annual event is hosted at the Mobile Tennis Center.
The field consists of 12 automatic berths, 11 at-large selections, and the host berth Mobile (Ala.). Automatic qualification is given to conference and unaffiliated grouping tournament champions.
At-large teams were determined by the NAIA Tennis National Selection Committee (NSC). The NSC consists of one representative from each geographic area, a representative from the National Administrative Council (NAC), the president of the Tennis Coaches Association and two at-large members. The committee evaluated teams throughout the year on various criteria.
The single elimination tournament commences with eight first-round matchups on May 15 starting at 8:30 a.m. CDT. The top eight seeds receive a first-round bye and begin action on May 16 at 9 a.m. The event concludes on May 19 with the championship match at 9 a.m.
Keiser (Fla.), for the first time in program history, is the No. 1 overall seed for the tournament. The Seahawks finished the regular season as The Sun Conference automatic qualifier with a 15-6 record. Keiser looks to improve their 18-11 championship record against the winner of No. 16 Westmont (Calif.) and No. 17 Union (Ky.).
Sitting right behind the Seahawks are the two-time defending champion Grizzlies of Georgia Gwinnett. Georgia Gwinnett looks for their third-straight red banner as they await the winner of No. 15 SCAD Atlanta (Ga.) and No. 18 Arizona Christian.
No. 9 Indiana Wesleyan leads all qualifiers with 19 appearances.
There are no new teams competing in the national championship this year.
Keiser (Fla.) and Georgia Gwinnett are the only teams in this season's field with a national championship.
For more information on the 2018 NAIA Women's Tennis National Championship, click here.