FMU Women ranked 23rd, Men #38 in final tennis polls

FMU Women ranked 23rd, Men #38 in final tennis polls

The Francis Marion University women's and men's tennis teams are ranked 23rd and 38th respectively in the final 2017 Oracle/Intercollegiate Tennis Association NCAA Division II Top 50 national polls that were released on Thursday.

The Francis Marion women appear in the final national poll for the 11th time in the past 12 seasons and the 18th time over the past 24 years, while the men appear for the 22nd straight year, and the 23rd of the past 24 seasons.

In the final individual ITA rankings, senior Samantha Koelliker is ranked 22nd among women's singles players and Koelliker and sophomore Marie Krueger are ranked 15th in doubles.  Senior Richard Ashforth is ranked 21st nationally for men's singles.

The FMU women finished 2017 with a 14-9 mark, tied for fourth during the Peach Belt Conference regular season, and made the program's ninth appearance in an NCAA Division II national tournament regional final over the past 11 years.

Five of the team's losses were to opponents appearing in the final Top-10 and two others were to a Division I opponent.

The Patriot men finished with a 7-9 record and tied for seventh in the regular-season PBC standings.  Seven of the team's defeats were to teams appearing in the final poll and one other was to a Division I opponent.

In 25 seasons, Patriot head coach Garth Thomson has amassed a 346-201 career coaching record at the helm of the Patriot women and a 337-188 men's mark.

Koelliker posted a 15-4 singles record playing at the No.1 position, and went 10-2 through a tough Peach Belt schedule.  Koelliker and Krueger registered a 16-7 doubles mark at the No.1 spot.

In the final Division II Southeast Regional rankings, Koelliker is fourth in singles and the pair is third in doubles.  Koelliker is a native of Vielbringen, Switzerland, and Krueger is from Leverkusen, Germany.

Ashforth posted a 12-4 singles record at the No.1 spot on the Patriot ladder, including four victories over nationally ranked opponents and was 7-3 in the rugged PBC. In his previous three years as a Patriot, he ranked 25th nationally in 2016, 14th in 2015, and 23rd in 2014.

A native of Durban, South Africa, Ashford is listed fourth in the final 2017 regional singles rankings.  Ashforth and sophomore Tarass Thevenaz teamed to record a 6-5 doubles mark and were ranked ninth in the regional rankings.  Thevenaz hails from Le Landeron, Switzerland.