Gustavus Adolphus College plays host this weekend as the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference crowns a tournament champion in women’s tennis. The host Gusties captured their 17th consecutive league title and earned the top seed in this weekend’s tournament by going 10-0 in league play. The winner of this weekend’s tournament receives the MIAC’s automatic bid to the field of 47 teams for the 2008 NCAA Division III Women’s Tennis Championships, where Gustavus will serve as the host for this year’s championships.
Gustavus enters the tournament as the only MIAC team ranked nationally by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association. The 15th-ranked Gusties are also the fourth-ranked team in the Central Region, dropping one spot from the ITA’s final fall regional rankings. St. Thomas enters the weekend ranked 15th in the Central Region, after being unranked in the ITA’s final fall rankings.
Gustavus’ Jenni White and Sierra Krebsbach lead the list of ranked women’s players from the MIAC. White is ranked fifth regionally in singles, while Krebsbach is rated 12th. The pair is also the top-rated doubles team in the Central Region and finished third at the ITA Small College Championships. Three additional MIAC doubles teams are rated in the top-20 of the Central Region. Gustavus’ Sam Frank and Ali O’Neal are ranked ninth followed by Saint Benedict’s Megan Wrobel and Melissa Kampa, who are ranked 18th, and St. Thomas’ Dana Vilar and Allison Bruflodt, who are ranked 19th.
Gustavus finished atop the league standings with a perfect record for the 17th consecutive season, capturing the school’s 23rd MIAC title in the process. St. Thomas finished second with an 8-1 league mark, followed by Macalester (8-2), Saint Benedict (6-4), St. Olaf (5-5), and Carleton (5-5). Macalester was the biggest mover in the league standings from 2007 to 2008, improving six spots from ninth to third. The Scots finished 6-12 overall, 3-7 in the MIAC a year ago, but enter the 2008 MIAC Tournament with a 14-4 record overall and a 8-2 mark in the conference. Saint Mary’s (5-5), St. Catherine (4-6), Bethel
(2-8), Concordia (1-9) and Hamline (0-10) round out the standings.
This year’s tournament will begin at 12 p.m. Friday, April 25 with one first-round match on the Brown Outdoor Courts, followed by the second first-round match at 3 p.m. Play continues Saturday, April 26 with semifinal matches scheduled for 9 a.m. and the championship match slated for 2 p.m. on the Brown Outdoor Courts. In the event of rain, play will be moved to Gustavus’ Swanson Tennis Center. All matches contested outdoors will be played to completion. If weather forces the tournament indoors, matches will be played to decision.