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Men's Tennis Earns 17th-Place Ranking In ITA Poll

Japie De Klerk
Japie De Klerk
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Jan. 3, 2013

TULSA, Okla. - Junior Japie De Klerk and sophomore Alejandro Espejo earned top-100 national singles rankings while Tulsa checked in at 17th in the first Intercollegiate Tennis Association Rankings of the 2013 campaign, the organization announced today.

De Klerk, who snared the No. 34 spot, advanced to the quarterfinals of the ITA All-American Championships to earn a spot at the USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships and defeated three top-50 foes during the fall season. De Klerk began the fall season ranked No. 73 in the country. De Klerk is also the top-ranked player in the Central region.

Espejo earned his first national ranking of his career with a No. 69 showing in the polls, and was ranked No. 8 in the region. The third Golden Hurricane player to be ranked top-10 regionally was senior Clifford Marsland, who claimed the No. 10 spot.

In doubles, Espejo and De Klerk were tabbed at the No. 8 duo in the Central region.

The No. 17 national team ranking is the highest for the program since the 2009 season, when TU checked in at No. 17 the week of February 19th.

"We need to go out and prove ourselves as we get ready for the season," commented Director of Tennis and Head Coach Vince Westbrook. "We play a lot of top ranked team, it comes down to the matches and what we are capable of doing. We need our guys to be ready from the first match all the way to the first of March as we have a tough schedule. We have some experience, but with the schedule we play it will be tough, so we just need to be ready to go."

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