LSU's Chris Simpson and Mark Bowtell
Photo by:Steve Franz, LSU Athletics Staff Photographer
Men's Tennis Returns to ITA Top 20
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Published: April 09, 2013, 03:35 PM (CT)
by Palmer Black , Student Assistant SID

BATON ROUGE – The LSU men’s tennis team (13-9, 4-6 SEC) has jumped from No. 32 to No. 20 in the latest ITA poll after taking down then-No. 6 Tennessee (19-7, 6-4 SEC) 4-3 Sunday afternoon in Baton Rouge. This is the highest the Tigers have been ranked this season with their previous high being No. 23.
 
Sophomore Chris Simpson has also moved up to No. 52 in singles rankings, and senior Stefan Szacinski is making his season debut in the singles rankings at No. 104. Simpson clinched the victory over Tennessee with a dramatic come-from-behind victory over Tennessee’s Mikelis Libietis, the No. 4 singles player in the country. It was only Libietis’ second loss of the 2013 season and was his first loss in conference play this season. Szacinski earned his eighth straight singles victory when he took down Tennessee’s No. 30 Hunter Reese.
 
Simpson and Szacinski are also ranked No. 52 in doubles, and the duo of Szacinski and freshman Tam Trinh check into the doubles rankings for the first time this season at No. 65. Szacinski was paired with Simpson for the start of the season, but head coach Jeff Brown changed up the lineup and teamed him up with Trinh starting in mid-March. The duo of Szacinski and Trinh has compiled a 7-2 record in doubles this season, taking down three top 55 doubles pairs.
 
The University of Virginia (17-0) maintain their No. 1 ranking that they have held the entire season, and the SEC continues to make its presence felt in the rankings.
 
The SEC features four top 10 teams and 11 teams in the top 25, including No. 3 Georgia (17-4, 9-1 SEC), No. 6 Ole Miss (14-6, 7-4 SEC), No. 8 Kentucky (19-8, 6-4 SEC), No. 10 Tennessee, No. 11 Mississippi State (15-7, 5-5 SEC), No. 13 Vanderbilt (15-7, 6-4 SEC), No. 14 Texas A&M (14-11, 5-5 SEC), No. 17 Florida (11-9, 5-5 SEC), No. 18 Auburn (13-7, 5-5 SEC), No. 20 LSU, and No. 22 South Carolina (15-9, 5-5 SEC). Other SEC teams outside the top 25 include No. 33 Alabama (12-10, 3-7 SEC), and No. 54 Arkansas (13-14, 0-11 SEC).
 
This season, the Tigers have taken down four top 20 teams, including No. 6 Ole Miss, No. 10 Tennessee, No. 14 Texas A&M, and No. 17 Florida.
 
LSU takes on No. 11 Mississippi State this Wednesday, April 10 at 3 p.m. CT at the Dub. Admission is free and the first 100 fans will receive a free LSU tennis t-shirt. Free pizza and beverages will also be provided.
 
For up-to-date information and behind the scenes access on the Tigers, fans can follow the LSU men's team on Twitter @lsutennis, and follow head coach Jeff Brown @LSUCoachJBrown and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/lsutennis.
 
Men's National Team Rankings
Administered by the ITA
NCAA Division I Tennis
April 9, 2013
Rank School

1 Virginia
2 UCLA
3 Georgia
4 Southern California
5 Ohio State
6 Mississippi
7 Pepperdine
8 Kentucky
9 Duke
10 Tennessee
11 Mississippi State
12 Oklahoma
13 Vanderbilt
14 Texas A&M
15 Baylor
16 California
17 Florida
18 Auburn
19 Harvard
20 LSU
21 Tulsa
22 South Carolina
23 Texas
24 Michigan
25 Clemson

 

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