ITA Singles Ranking | ITA Doubles Ranking | 2012-13 Schedule
The national collegiate governing body released its annual preseason rankings Friday afternoon, and the Vols' top two returners both reached career highs in the top 125.
Libietis, who played all his matches at No. 1 singles and doubles as a freshman last spring, will enter the fall ranked 15th nationally. Reese is ranked No. 34. Both recorded 20 wins as freshmen while also forming the Vols' top doubles team.
Reese and Collins teamed up to win the ITA National doubles title at the ITA National Collegiate Summer Championships in mid-August to earn the pair a wild card into the ITA All-American Championships, the outdoor fall national event. Collins, a left-hander from Bowie, Md., transferred to Tennessee for his final year after Maryland disbanded its tennis program.
Libietis and Chaplin played just three matches together last year, but they were all wins. The two won the top flight of the Tennessee Fall Invitational. The No. 17 ranking is a career high.
ITA ALL-AMERICAN CHAMPIONSHIPS FIELD RELEASED
Based on their rankings, Libietis and Reese earned bids into the singles main draw of the ITA All-American Championships, the first major of the college tennis season in Tulsa, Okla. Libietis will likely be seeded in the 64-player tournament, which starts Oct. 4.
Tennessee is one of three schools to qualify multiple pairings to the main draw 32-team doubles tournament. Collins and Reese are likely going to be among the top eight seeded teams, and Libietis and Chaplin were also selected.
Collins, Chaplin and Brandon Fickey were selected for the singles qualifying draw, which starts Oct. 1. Edward Jones, Taylor Patrick and Colton Norton are slated for pre-qualifying, beginning Sept. 29.
Jones and Fickey are set for doubles qualifying.
Collins is the only Vol with main draw experience at the All-American. He reached the second round of doubles in last year's tournament with Maros Horny.
Tennessee has won three titles at the All-American in program history, two of them coming in 2009 when John-Patrick Smith won the singles title and teamed up with Boris Conkic a few hours later to win the doubles championship.
2012-13 SCHEDULE RELEASED
The Vols' 2012-13 season schedule was also released on Friday. Tennessee is set to open the fall individual season Sept. 21 at the Baylor Invitational in Waco, Texas.
The Vols will once again host the Tennessee Fall Invitational, a singles and doubles tournament that runs Oct. 12-14 at Barksdale Stadium on campus and at nearby Tyson Park.
Tennessee kicks off the team season Jan. 17 at home against Tennessee Tech, starting a six-match home stand for the Vols at Goodfriend Tennis Center.
From there, the Vols will be on the road for nearly two months, including two trips to Champaign, Ill. Tennessee travels to Illinois for the ITA Kick-Off Weekend on Jan. 25 in an attempt to qualifying for the ITA National Team Indoor Championships for the sixth consecutive year.
The Vols open the SEC schedule March 1 at Georgia, a rivalry match that has traditionally been a trophy-decider at the end of the regular season. Home SEC matches include tilts against South Carolina, Florida, Vanderbilt, Texas A&M, LSU, Alabama and Auburn.
The SEC Championships begin April 17 in Oxford, Miss. The Vols could make a third trip to Illinois in May because the Illini are hosting the final rounds of the NCAA Championships.
No. 6 - Hunter Reese/John Collins
No. 17 - Mikelis Libietis/Jarryd Chaplin
Main Draw Doubles
Hunter Reese/John Collins
Mikelis Libietis/Jarryd Chaplin
Edward Jones/Brandon Fickey