The nationally ranked Francis Marion University men's and women's tennis teams will open play in the 2013 Peach Belt Conference Tournament on Friday morning (April 12) at the Dr. Eddie Floyd Florence Tennis Center.
Admission to the three-day event is free.
The four women's quarterfinal matches will be played on Friday at 8 a.m., followed by the four men's quarterfinal matches at 11 a.m. Two women's elimination bracket matches will be played at 2 p.m., followed by two men's elimination bracket matches at 5 p.m.
The women's semifinal matches and the fifth-place match will start at 8 a.m. on Saturday morning (April 13), followed at noon by the men's semifinal matches and the fifth-place match.
The women's championship match and third-place match are set for Sunday morning (April 14) at 8 a.m., with the men's championship and third-place match at noon.
The 10th-ranked and third-seeded FMU women are 20-2 and will face 33rd-ranked and sixth-seeded Augusta State University (14-7) on Friday at 8 p.m. The Patriots defeated the Jaguars 7-2 on March 29 in Augusta.
Francis Marion's probable line-up for the tournament opener will be a singles order of No.1 senior Mona Blauen (17-3), No.2 junior Tereza Baranova (14-6), No.3 sophomore Julia Graf (18-2), No.4 junior Kimberley Hurter (17-5), No.5 freshman Lena Specht (18-1), and No.6 freshman Nora Westbye (10-1). The doubles line-up will consist of Blauen/Graf (18-3) at No.1, Baranova/Westbye (12-2) at No.2, and Hurter/Specht (11-1) at No.3.
Blauen has continued her climb up the career ranks at FMU, now occupying third place on the career singles wins list with a 65-10 mark and second place in all-time doubles victories with a 69-14 record. She is currently on a 10-match winning streak in singles play, while she has teamed with Graf to win 11 consecutive doubles matches. Westbye has won her last nine singles matches.
The 27th-ranked and sixth-seeded Francis Marion men finished the regular season with a 13-7 record and will meet eighth-ranked and third-seeded Columbus State University (15-2) in a quarterfinal match on Friday at 11 a.m. The Cougars edged the Patriots 5-4 in Florence back on Feb. 24.
FMU's singles line-up will include senior Alex Caspari (15-5) at No.1, sophomore Gavin Davison (10-7) at No.2, freshman Arnaud Holl (13-7) at No.3, sophomore Eimon Heywood (8-8) at No.4, junior Tim Ruepke (8-7) at No.5, and sophomore Marius Wahlier (10-5) at No. 6. The doubles roster will consist of Caspari and Davison (12-6) at No.1, Heywood and Holl (7-7) at No.2, and Wahlier and Ruepke (2-4) at No. 3.
An All-American in 2012 for both singles and doubles, Caspari owns career marks of 51-17 in singles and 49-25 in doubles. He is one of only five players in FMU history to reach 50 singles wins.
Armstrong Atlantic State University owns the top seeds in both tournaments. The top-ranked Pirate women (21-1) are the defending NCAA Division II national champions and have won four of the last five national championships and seven overall. The Armstrong men (19-1) are also the defending national champs and have captured three of the past five Division II titles.
Altogether, the Peach Belt Conference has produced 11 men's NCAA Division II national champions since the conference was organized in 1992.
Armstrong has won or shared 18 of the 21 PBC titles, while Armstrong and Lander University have combined to win 19 of the 21 PBC championships.
2013 Peach Belt Conference Men's and Women's Tennis Tournaments Friday, April 12 8 am - Match 1 Women's Quarterfinal #1 Armstrong (21-1) vs. #8 Lander (9-9) 8 am - Match 2 Women's Quarterfinal #4 Clayton State (8-9) vs. #5 Georgia College (14-9) 8 am - Match 3 Women's Quarterfinal #3 Francis Marion (20-2) vs. #6 Augusta St. (14-7) 8 am - Match 4 Women's Quarterfinal #2 Columbus State (18-2) vs. #7 USC Aiken (10-9) 11 am - Match 5 Men's Quarterfinal #1 Armstrong (19-1) vs. #8 Flagler (4-12) 11 am - Match 6 Men's Quarterfinal #4 Georgia College (17-4) vs. #5 Augusta State (11-9) 11 am - Match 7 Men's Quarterfinal #3 Columbus State (15-2) vs. #6 Francis Marion (13-7) 11 am - Match 8 Men's Quarterfinal #2 Lander (13-2) vs. #7 USC Aiken (10-6) 2 pm - Match 13 Women's Elimination Bracket 1/8 Loser vs. 4/5 Loser 2 pm - Match 14 Women's Elimination Bracket 3/6 Loser vs. 2/7 Loser 5 pm - Match 15 Men's Elimination Bracket 1/8 Loser vs. 4/5 Loser 5 pm - Match 16 Men's Elimination Bracket 3/6 Loser vs. 2/7 Loser Saturday, April 13 8 am - Match 9 Women's Semifinal 1/8 Winner vs. 4/5 Winner 8 am - Match 10 Women's Semifinal 2/7 Winner vs. 3/6 Winner 8 am - Match 17 Women's 5th-Place Match 13 winner vs. Match 14 winner 12 pm - Match 11 Men's Semifinal 1/8 Winner vs. 4/5 Winner 12 pm - Match 12 Men's Semifinal 2/7 Winner vs. 3/6 Winner 12 pm - Match 18 Men's 5th-Place Match 15 winner vs. Match 16 winner Sunday, April 14 8 am - Match 19 Women's 3rd-Place Match 9 loser vs. Match 10 loser 8 am - Match 21 Women's Championship Semifinal Winners 12 pm - Match 20 Men's 3rd-Place Match 9 loser vs. Match 10 loser 12 pm - Match 22 Men's Championship Semifinal Winners