Gustavus Adolphus College is hosting the 2011 USTA/ITA Midwest Regional Championship at the Swanson Indoor Tennis Center and the Brown Outdoor Courts this weekend in St. Peter, Minn. The Women’s Division III Midwest Region Championships will take place Friday, September 23 through Sunday, September 25.
The USTA/ITA Women’s Division III Championships at Gustavus will feature 18 of the top schools in the region. The singles and doubles champions from this weekend’s tournament advance to the Oct. 13-16 Intercollegiate Tennis Association National Small College Championships at the Copeland-Cox Tennis Center in Mobile, Alabama.
Sixty-five of the top singles and doubles players in the Midwest will take part in the tournament which will begin with singles matches on Friday morning at 9:00 a.m. Kathryn Scmidt of Carleton College is the #1 seed in the singles draw. Other seeds include second-seeded Megan Gaard of Gustavus, third seeded Kalla Schaefer of UW-Whitewater, and fourth seeded Michelle Schupbach of Coe College.
The doubles competition will begin on Friday immediately after the completion of the second round of singles play. Kathryn Schmidt and Anne Lombardi of Carleton are the #1 seeded doubles team. The remaining top-four seeds include the second seeded team of Megan Gaard and Alex Erickson of Gustavus, the third seeded team of Hollis McPeek and Kristina Naidicz of Carthage, and the fourth seeded team of Kalla Schaefer and Alexandra Bayliss of UW-Whitewater.
The Swanson Indoor Tennis Center, located on the west edge of the Gustavus campus, will serve as headquarters for the USTA/ITA Midwest Region Championships, with matches taking place at Swanson and the adjacent Brown Outdoor Courts.
The ITA National Small College Championships began in 1986 and annually crowns men’s and women’s singles and doubles national champions in each of the ITA’s four small college divisions (NCAA Divisions II and III, NAIA and Junior/Community College). These championships are the only national tournaments for singles and doubles at the NCAA Division II and NAIA level, and the only tournaments that combine all levels of Junior/Community Colleges (NJCAA Divisions I-III, and California Community Colleges). Participants are determined through these USTA/ITA Regional Championships, which serve as qualifying tournaments. The national champions from each division square off in the “Super Bowl” of Small College Tennis to determine the overall ITA National Small College Champions (who then earn berths into the ITA National Intercollegiate Indoor Championships, a Division I event, in November).
As the governing body of collegiate tennis, the ITA promotes both the athletic and academic achievements of the collegiate tennis community. The ITA, which was founded in 1956 and is based in Skillman, N.J., administers numerous regional and national championships, the ITA Collegiate Summer Circuit, presented by the USTA, and the ITA Rankings for men’s and women’s tennis at the NCAA Divisions I, II and III, NAIA and Junior College levels. The ITA also has a comprehensive awards program for players and coaches to honor excellence in academics, leadership and sportsmanship. The official ITA website is www.itatennis.com.
Along with USTA/ITA Midwest Regional, the Gusties will also host the Gustavus Fall Invitational. The Fall Invite will begin at 9:00 a.m. with the first four matches in Flight #1. All other singles matches will begin at 10:15 a.m.