Aug. 4, 2011
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -
Head men's tennis coach Billy Pate announced the 2011-2012 schedule on Thursday that includes 11 matches against teams advancing to the 2011 NCAA Championships. The schedule features one fall tournament in Tuscaloosa and 10 home dual matches, with six of those against Southeastern Conference competition.
"As usual, we have a very challenging schedule," Pate said. "In planning these contests, we set out to give our student-athletes the chance to play against the best in the country. The Southeastern Conference is typically regarded as the best tennis conference in the nation. In addition to the 11 matches we will have against league opponents, we also have a diverse schedule of tournaments and competition we'll encounter outside of the SEC."
The fall segment of the Crimson Tide's schedule starts off with a trip to Chicago to play in the Olympia Fields Invitational that will be held Sept. 16-18. That same weekend some of the Tide players will be attending the Duke Fab Four Invite in Cary, N.C.
The month of October starts with the Georgia Tech Fall Invitational, Oct. 1-3, as well as the D'Novo/ITA All-American Championships in Tulsa, Okla. The tournament runs from Oct. 3-9, beginning with the prequalifying draw. The Tide will then head to Auburn, Ala., for the USTA/ITA Southern Regional Championships Oct. 23-26. Alabama wraps up October by hosting the Crimson Tide Fall Championships, Oct. 28-30.
The fall schedule will conclude with a trip to Sarasota, Fla. for the Lakewood Ranch Clay Court Classic Nov. 11-13.
The spring portion of the Tide's slate opens up with the Central Florida Invitational in Orlando, Fla. running Jan. 6-8. Alabama will then appear at the SEC Indoor Championships Jan. 13-16, at a site to be determined. The Tide will open dual match play when it hosts Northwestern on Jan. 20.
The 2012 ITA Kick-off Weekend is next for Alabama where it will travel to Los Angeles Jan. 27-30. Alabama will face UCLA in the first match before taking on either Fresno State or UC Irvine the next day. Should Alabama come away with a win in both matches, the team would advance to the 2012 ITA National Team Indoor Championships in Charlottesville, Va., Feb. 17-20.
The start of February brings the Tide home to host TCU on Feb. 5, followed by a double header on Feb. 11, against Furman and Troy. Alabama then travels to Montgomery, Ala., for the Blue Gray National Tennis Classic on the last weekend of the month. The tournament consists of eight teams, three of which advanced to the NCAA Championship last season, and each team is guaranteed three matches.
Alabama begins SEC action the first weekend in March, heading to Starkville and Oxford to face Mississippi State and Mississippi. The next weekend the Tide hosts two conference opponents, matching up with LSU on March 9 and Arkansas two days later. On March18, Alabama visits Coral Gables, Fla. to challenge Miami, and then continues on to Nashville for a match with Vanderbilt on March 23. The Tide brings it back home to face Kentucky on March 25 followed by a trip to Columbia to compete with South Carolina to close out the month.
April begins with Alabama on the road taking on Florida before coming home to match up with Georgia on April 6 and Tennessee on April 8. Next, the team takes a short drive to Birmingham for a doubleheader
against UAB and Samford. The regular season closes when the Tide welcomes in-state rival Auburn on April 14.
The 2012 SEC Men's Tennis Championships will be played in Starkville, Miss., starting April 19 and running through the 22. NCAA tournament play begins with the first and second rounds on May 11 at 16 to-be-determined sites. The NCAA Championships will then take place May 17-28, in Athens, Ga.
"There's a great deal of excitement with the team we have along with the expected completion of our new indoor facility," Pate added. "We hope to open the 2012 dual match season in that venue on Jan. 20 against Northwestern."