Tennis 'Cats; Lady 'Cats Climb in Final ITA Regional Rankings

Tennis 'Cats; Lady 'Cats Climb in Final ITA Regional Rankings

SKILLMAN, N.Y. -- Both West Virginia Wesleyan tennis programs climbed to their highest finishes in several years when the final Oracle/ITA Regional rankings were released this week.

The Bobcat men, having completed a 17-7 campaign with two MEC titles and a trip to the NCAA second round, jumped three spots to the No. 3 position. The team won 12 consecutive matches before bowing at Chowan in the NCAA regional finals.

In addition, the men compiled a 3.63 GPA in the classroom this past spring during their run.

The Lady Bobcats finished their season in the top ten, coming in at ninth regionally and narrowly missing an NCAA post-season tournament bid. The women were 11-7 overall, and 5-2 record in the MEC.

It was the first time in eight years that the Lady Bobcats garnered an ITA ranking in the final poll.

The women also led the athletic department once again with a 3.72 team GPA this past term.

For singles, MEC Freshman of the Year Rebekka Heigermoser ended her season ranked at No. 9 becoming the highest ranked Lady Bobcat since Paula Pimenta reached No. 7 in 2013.

Heigermoser earned a perfect 4.0 GPA during her first year with the Lady 'Cats.

On the men's side, Ramon Rodriguez (11th), Nathan Sabate (15th), and Lukas Laipold (18th) all remained ranked in the singles, while Rodriguez and Pedro Nassar entered at No. 10 in the doubles poll.

The duo won their five matches together, including key points in both of the NCAA regional matches. Sabate, a senior from Lleida, Spain, climbed into the rankings on the strength of his upset of No. 3 Baptiste Perrin of West Liberty in the Bobcats's NCAA regional win. Each of these four players also turned in GPAs above a 3.75 during the spring term.

The Bobcat men graduate seniors Sabate, Jacobo Rendon, and Timothy Stephens from this year's squad, while the women say goodbye to Pimenta and Sarah Cameron from their lineup.

The men return seven of their top 10 players next season, while the Lady Bobcats will bring back five of their top six from this spring.