St. Louis, Mo., Nov. 4, 2013 — The Washington University in St. Louis women's tennis team will begin its spring season ranked No. 12 in the NCAA Division III Women's Tennis National Rankings, as announced by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA).
Six-time defending national champion Williams College is ranked No. 1, followed by last year's runner-up Emory University at No. 2. Amherst College, Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges and Middlebury College were ranked third through fifth, respectively. Four other University Athletic Association (UAA) teams joined No. 2 Emory and No. 12 Washington U. in the preseason poll – No. 8 University of Chicago, No. 9 Carnegie Mellon University, No. 24 Brandeis University and No. 25 Case Western Reserve University. Washington U. is also ranked second behind Chicago in the ITA Central Region rankings.
Washington University finished with a 16-8 record a year ago, and advanced to the NCAA Division III Quarterfinals for the second time in school history. The 16 wins was the second-most in a single-season in head coach Kelly Stahlhuth's tenure. Stahlhuth enters her ninth season at the helm of the Bears' program with a 118-60 (.663) record and has led WUSTL to the NCAA Tournament each of the past six seasons.
The Bears return 10 letterwinners from last year's team, including sophomore Aly Coran, who received first-team all-UAA honors at No. 4 singles in 2013. Coran posted a 42-12 overall record in her first collegiate season, and teamed up with sophomore Jamie Silverberg to post a 12-2 doubles record, including a 9-1 mark over their final 10 matches of the season. The duo is ranked No. 15 in the ITA Central Region doubles rankings after posting a 2-1 mark at the ITA Central Region Championships in September. Silverberg is also the 11th-ranked singles player in the Central Region after advancing to the quarterfinals at the ITA Central Regional.
Freshman Rebecca Ho is ranked No. 5 in the Central Region after advancing to the semifinals at the ITA Central Regional. She and senior Betsy Edershile also garnered a No. 13 Central Region doubles ranking. Senior Theresa Petraskova, who spent the 2013 fall semester studying abroad, enters her final season one win shy of 100 career victories after playing at No. 1 singles and No. 2 doubles last year. Her doubles partner from a year ago, junior Hanna Newstadt has a 38-25 overall record in her first three seasons, and also started at No. 5 singles for the Bears much of last year.
Washington University begins the season with a match against No. 13 DePauw University Sunday, Feb. 16. The Bears rallied for a 5-4 win over the Tigers to secure their trip to the 2013 NCAA Quarterfinal. Washington U. is scheduled to play six regular-season matches against teams ranked in the ITA Division III top-30.