2015 NAIA Women?s Tennis Coaches? Top 25 Poll ? April 28
By Mike DeVader, Communications and Sports Information Intern
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Georgia Gwinnett looks to defend its national championship in mid-May and will do so as the No. 1-ranked team in the nation. The Grizzlies took the top spot once again in the 2015 NAIA Women’s Tennis Coaches’ Top 25 Poll, the national office announced Tuesday. They collected 342 total points and 11-of-13 first place votes to earn the mark.
The final regular-season Top 25 Poll will be revealed on May 4 at 4 p.m. CDT. The national qualifiers for the 2015 Men’s and Women’s Tennis National Championships on May 12-16 in Mobile, Ala., will be unveiled at 5 p.m. on the same day.
Today’s ranking is the 11th time in school history that Georgia Gwinnett is No. 1. The rating is also the program’s eighth top-billing in-a-row, dating back to the Postseason Poll on May 21, 2014. Georgia Gwinnett is now tied with former member Fresno Pacific (Calif.) for second-most consecutive No. 1s.
The Grizzlies (8-6) ran away from then-No. 3 Brenau (Ga.), 6-3, on April 24 to put a bow on the 2014-15 regular-season. Highlighting the day was the doubles team of Laura Wehner and Valeria Podda, who defeated Fatyha Berjane and Patricia Recalde Pacua of Brenau, 8-2. Georgia Gwinnett’s Chiara Di Salvo and Helga Pinones-Haltenhoff recorded an 8-1 win over Nathalia Bolivar and Kelley Cohron.
In singles competition, Podda beat Berjane, 6-3, 7-5, and Pinones-Haltenhoff and Victoria Svensson also took home singles victories.
No. 2 Auburn Montgomery (Ala.) (19-4) remained in second with 333 points and the final two first-place votes. Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) (15-7; 317 points) is third after jumping one spot following the school’s Mid-South Conference tournament crown over then-No. 18 Cumberland (Tenn.), 5-0.
The rest of the top five includes No 4. SCAD Savannah (Ga.) (14-4; 308 points) and fifth-ranked Xavier (La.) (15-9; 301 points) moved up from No. 7 in the April 14 release.
No. 7 William Carey (Miss.) vaulted into the top 10 from No. 18 after making the championship match of the Southern States Athletic Conference tournament against Auburn Montgomery (lost 5-0). The Crusaders defeated Brenau in the semifinals.
Westmont (Calif.) dropped further than any other program this week, falling from No. 11 to No. 20.
Twenty-second ranked LSU Alexandria (La.) finds itself in the Top 25 after toppling then-No. 10 Oklahoma Baptist, 5-3, on April 25. The win in the unaffiliated group (RRAC, SAC and MCAC) tournament punched LSU Alexandria’s ticket to the national championships.
The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences and the Association of Independent Institutions. For the entire 2015 NAIA Women’s Tennis Coaches’ Top 25 Poll schedule, click here.
Notes: (All information as of the 2000 season) After winning its first-ever national championship in 2014, Georgia Gwinnett earned its 11th all-time No. 1 ranking this week … No. 2 Auburn Montgomery (Ala.) leads all NAIA programs with 72 all-time No. 1 rankings… The Warhawks are followed by Brenau (Ga.) with 12, former-member Fresno Pacific (Calif.) with eight and Xavier (La.) with five… Auburn Montgomery topped each poll from Feb. 11, 2004, to May 1, 2010, a span of 47-straight No. 1 rankings, an NAIA record… The next closest streak is just eight by Georgia Gwinnett (currently ongoing) and Fresno Pacific, which garnered the top selection in all eight polls in 2011… Auburn Montgomery has been ranked among the top five since April 2, 2003… Three teams held the No. 1 ranking in 2014: Auburn Montgomery, Georgia Gwinnett and Xavier.
2015 NAIA Women’s Tennis Coaches’ Top 25 Poll (April 28)
|RANK||LAST WEEK^||SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES)||2014-15 RECORD||TOTAL POINTS|
|1||1||Georgia Gwinnett (11)||8-6||342|
|2||2||Auburn Montgomery (Ala.) (2)||19-4||333|
|3||4||Lindsey Wilson (Ky.)||15-7||317|
|4||5||SCAD Savannah (Ga.)||14-4||308|
|7||18||William Carey (Miss.)||12-7||278|
|10||12||Cardinal Stritch (Wis.)||21-2||237|
|15||16||Lewis-Clark State (Idaho)||7-12||197|
|23||22||Olivet Nazarene (Ill.)||16-7||106|
Others Receiving Votes Indiana Wesleyan 67; Aquinas (Mich.) 35; St. Thomas (Fla.) 31; Missouri Valley 28; Campbellsville (Ky.) 24; SCAD Atlanta (Ga.) 18; McPherson (Kan.) 18; Marian (Ind.) 16; Reinhardt (Ga.) 3.
^ 2015 NAIA Women’s Tennis Coaches’ Top 25 Poll (April 14)