The USC men's and women's tennis teams have both locked in strong positions for the coming 2013 NCAA Team Championships. Both teams are hosting first and second rounds at Marks Stadium from May 10-12 in an effort to make return trips to the NCAA Round of 16 and beyond in Illinois later this month. The USC men (23-4) are defending a string of four straight national championships as they enter the 2013 tourney as the No. 4 seed. Back-to-back Pac-12 champs, the USC women (21-2) reached the semifinals last year and are the No. 5 seed in the women's bracket.
The plan of attack for action at Marks Stadium is to have the men's competition run May 10 and 11, and women's competition May 11 and 12. The USC men will welcome back two of head coach Peter Smith's former assistants, as Brett Masi's San Diego team and George Husack's Alabama squad will square off on day one of action before USC tangles with Sacramento State in the May 10 men's opening rounds. On the women's side, UC Irvine and San Jose State are slated for the first round, with USC and Sacramento State also squaring off on May 11.
The USC women boast the freshly crowned Pac-12 Doubles Champions Kaitlyn Christian and Sabrina Santamaria, two-time ITA National Indoor champs who just grabbed their second consecutive conference title last weekend. In the last round of ITA rankings, the Women of Troy had five players nationally ranked in singles: #2 Sabrina Santamaria, #9 Danielle Lao, #32 Zoë Scandalis, #76 Gabriella DeSimone and #112 Giuliana Olmos. That crew includes four 2012 ITA All-Americans in Christian, Santamaria, Lao and Scandalis.
The USC men are fully loaded with a whopping seven Trojans ranked in the nation's top-100: #4 Emilio Gomez, #17 Ray Sarmiento, #34 Roberto Quiroz, #65 Yannick Hanfmann, #80 Eric Johnson, #93 Jonny Wang and #94 Michael Grant. All juniors, sophomore and freshmen, the Trojans are young but experienced, with several members of USC's fourth straight NCAA title winning team still in the mix, led by the highly ranked Gomez, ITA All-Americans Sarmiento and Quiroz, and the 2012 championship clincher Hanfmann.
For more information, visit ncaa.com
The schedule for NCAA first and second round competition at Marks Stadium is below:
2013 NCAA MEN'S TENNIS
Friday, May 10 - First Round
11 a.m. -- San Diego (17-9) vs. Alabama (14-13)
2 p.m. -- No. 4 USC (23-4) vs. Sacramento State (17-12)
Saturday, May 11 - Second Round
3 p.m. -- winning teams play
2013 NCAA WOMEN'S TENNIS
Saturday, May 11 - First Round
9 a.m. -- UC Irvine (22-4) vs. San Jose State (19-5)
12 p.m. -- No. 5 USC (21-2) vs. Sacramento State (13-13)
Sunday, May 12 - Second Round
12 p.m. -- winning teams play