FORT MYERS, Fla. – Coming off a successful FGCU-Hilton Garden Inn Invitational at the FGCU Tennis Complex over the weekend, the FGCU women’s tennis team was picked to finish fourth in the Atlantic Sun Conference preseason standings, as voted on by league coaches and announced by the conference office on Thursday.
This year’s fourth place preseason vote marks the highest position the Eagles have attained in their four seasons in the A-Sun, and is a four-spot improvement from the eighth place vote they received a year ago.
“This is the highest preseason ranking our program has received since joining the A-Sun and we are excited about the recognition,” said third-year head coach Jennifer Gabou. “I am really looking forward to how the competition plays out and what the final standings will look like at the end of the spring season.”
ETSU returned as the preseason favorite for the 2011 Atlantic Sun Conference season after a perfect 10-0 mark last season, followed by UNF, who claimed the 2010 A-Sun Championship over ETSU, and Stetson ahead of the Eagles.
As hosts of the three-day FGCU-Hilton Garden Inn Invite last weekend, the Eagles were able to come away with some big wins over players from nationally-ranked programs. FGCU was able to bring its singles win total to six, including a trio against members from nationally-ranked programs (No. 50 Purdue and two against No. 66 North Texas), and also notched a pair of doubles victories, highlighted by the second-place finish in Flight 5 by sophomores Bibiana Almeida (Porto, Portugal/Schiller International School) and Melissa Narzissenfeld (Tampa, Fla./Academy of Holy Names).
The Blue and Green turn their focus toward their Feb. 12 meeting with FAU in Boca Raton, Fla. at 2 p.m. Results and recaps of the event will be available at FGCUAthletics.com following the day’s competition.
Atlantic Sun Women’s Preseason Standings
6. USC Upstate
7. Kennesaw State
Women’s Singles Player of the Year
Aline Berkenbrock, UNF
Women’s Doubles Team of the Year
Carolina de los Santos and Unnati Purushotham, Stetson