Blue Raiders jump to No. 42 in latest rankings

Highest ranking since arrival of Borendame

January 31, 2013 · @MTAthletics

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MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - Middle Tennessee used a gutsy performance last weekend against then-43rd ranked Virginia Tech to jump four spots to No. 42 in the latest Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) rankings, released Wednesday.

MT lost to No. 5 Duke, 7-0 on Jan. 25 at the ITA Kickoff Weekend event, but turned the tide on Feb. 27 to knock off VT (now ranked 46th), 4-3 in the consolation finals on Jan. 27.  The No. 42 ranking is the highest since the arrival of head coach Jimmy Borendame.  Additionally, the Blue Raiders have gained over 100 spots in the poll in under two years.

This week, Middle Tennessee will take on Vanderbilt and Tulane in team duals on Feb. 1 and 2, respectively.

Vanderbilt, ranked 44th, will host Friday's match at the Brownlee O. Currey Jr. Tennis Center at 2 p.m., while MT will host Tulane on Saturday at Nashboro Village. Saturday's match is scheduled for 2 p.m.

"This weekend will be a tough challenge," head coach Jimmy Borendame said. "I hope we will have a strong contingent of Blue Raider fans at the Vanderbilt match and on Saturday versus Tulane. We will need our fans to come to both matches this weekend to support us."

Vanderbilt has two singles players ranked in the top 20 in the ITA rankings: No. 17 Ryan Lipman and No. 20 Gonzales Austin. Additionally, Kris Yee is 114th.

"Vanderbilt is very tough young team," Borendame said. "They arguably have one of the best No. 1 and No. 2 in the country and always play good doubles. "

Tulane, who battled MT to a 4-3 Blue Raider victory in New Orleans last year, will be led by Idan Mark (currently ranked No. 16 in ITA regional rankings).

"Tulane is a very good team as well and they have a solid No. 1 player," Borendame said. "We are not overlooking them at all."

Live stats for Friday's event are available here.  For Saturday's live stats, click here.

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