DURHAM, N.C. – The 11th-ranked Duke men’s tennis team will make its 23rd consecutive appearance in the NCAA Team Championship and will serve as one of 16 host sites for first and second round play, as announced Tuesday, Apr. 29 by the NCAA.
The Blue Devils (19-6, 10-1 ACC) earned the No. 11 seed in the 64-team field and will welcome Elon (19-4), Tennessee (17-10) and Winthrop (16-9) to Ambler Tennis Stadium May 10-11 for regional action. The first match Saturday, May 10 between Elon and Tennessee will begin at 9 a.m., followed by Duke and Winthrop at 12 p.m. The winners of the two matches will face each other Sunday, May 11 at 2 p.m. to compete for a trip to the NCAA Championship May 15-26 at Georgia’s Dan Magill Tennis Complex in Athens, Ga.
Duke will host an NCAA Regional for the 13th time in program history and the fifth consecutive season. The Blue Devils own an overall record of 22-2 when hosting a regional round, including wins over Coastal Carolina and UNC Wilmington last season to advance to the round of 16. The program will be making its 23rd appearance in the NCAA tournament and owns an all-time mark of 44-23 in tournament competition. Duke has advanced to the NCAA quarterfinals in each of the past two seasons.
Head coach Ramsey Smith’s squad concluded the regular season on an eight-match win streak to finish second in the ACC standings. The Blue Devils will face Winthrop for just the third time in program history with Duke leading the series, 2-0. Duke holds a 10-1 advantage in the all-time series with Elon and is 8-12 historically against Tennessee, and suffered losses to both teams earlier this spring before taking off on a win streak during conference play.
“We are excited and honored to host the first and second rounds of the NCAA Championship,” Smith said. “Winthrop is playing well, having just won the Big South, and we know how good Tennessee and Elon are. Our team has built up some great momentum over the past six weeks and we are looking forward to the challenge.”
The Blue Devils, ranked 11th in the most recent Intercollegiate Tennis Association poll, boast three nationally ranked singles players in No. 30 Jason Tahir, No. 36 Fred Saba and No. No. 92 Bruno Semenzato. Saba and junior Raphael Hemmeler form the country’s 52nd-ranked duo in doubles, while Hemmeler is also listed 82nd with Semenzato.
Singles and doubles selections for the 2014 NCAA Individual Championships will be announced Wednesday, Apr. 30 at 6 p.m. on NCAA.com.
For more information about NCAA regional action in Durham, follow the Blue Devils on Twitter (@Duke_MTEN).