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State Tournament Next Up For Eastern Florida Tennis
April 10, 2014 - Three days of grueling tennis remain for Eastern Florida's women's tennis team as it closes its inaugural season at the Florida College System Activities Association/NJCAA Region 8 tournament at Sanlando Park in Altamonte Springs.
Doubles and singles play begins Friday and continues through Sunday. The top three finishing teams among the six competing – Eastern Florida, Florida State College Jacksonville, St. Petersburg College, State College of Florida Manatee-Sarasota, Hillsborough Community College and Broward College – advance to the NJCAA Division I national tournament in Tyler, TX in May.
Teams receive one point for each winner's bracket victory and a half-point for each victory in the back draw or relegation bracket in the double-elimination format. Players are seeded at singles positions one through six and doubles positions one through three.
In seedings announced Thursday night, Eastern Florida's No. 1 singles player Isabella Sella is the sixth seed and will play fifth seed Jazz Whittaker of St. Petersburg College. At No. 2 singles EFSC's Kasey Love is seeded fourth and plays third seed Astrid Omega of Broward College. At No. 3 EFSC's Kaila Cochran is seeded sixth and plays fifth seed Jenn Weissmann of State College of Florida Manatee-Sarasota. At No. 4 EFSC's Hope Fellows is seeded sixth and plays fifth seed Daviana Deaza of Broward College. At No. 5 EFSC's Erica Niesen is seeded sixth and plays fifth seed Julie Fernandez of Hillsborough Community College. At No. 6, EFSC's Laura Gorski is seeded third and plays fourth seed Deana Galbraith of Hillsborough.
At No. 1 doubles Sella and Cochran are the third seed and play fourth-seeded Bailey Palmer and Olivia Rolle of Florida State College Jacksonville. At No. 2 Love and Fellows are seeded fifth and play sixth seed Murphy Chloe and Miranda Talbert of State College of Florida. At No. 3 doubles Gorski and Fellows play Tarsha DeSouza and Deana Galbraith of Hillsborough.
Eastern Florida finished the regular season with a 3-11 record with just six players on its roster.
"I think overall, I think the expectations that we had were almost met," head coach Chuck Jacobs said. "I knew we were going to be strong at positions one, two and three. It was going to be a little weak on the four, five and six side. We knew that going into it. We tried to stay positive and have good expectations for them but that's just the way it panned out.
"I will say the players at the four, five and six spots have worked hard. They have improved tremendously. I think they are getting closer and closer to winning some matches. You just hope that maybe the whole season will come into full when we get to the tournament and they'll be able to pick off some matches here and there.
"All in all I'm happy as a coach but deep down inside its frustrating because I want better."
And better could come next season.
"We have a really good recruiting class coming in," Jacobs said. "We are going to have a full squad. We are going to have to make some tough decisions in the fall on what we do with some of the current players that we have. But all in all come fall and spring we've had a full year to recruit. We were very choosy on who we were getting. We had the ability to be a little bit picky because we had some good bran d recognition with our other sports. A lot of people want to come and play here. They like the school. We were able to be a little bit more choosy and get the best players we possibly can. We're very optimistic.
"The new courts (being built on the Melbourne Campus) will be awesome. Any match we go to it's the word on the street how we are getting these new courts. It's pretty exciting."