Kentucky Voted No. 6 in the East; Georgia Overall Champ

Jan. 22, 2009

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - The Southeastern Conference announced the Women’s Tennis Coaches Preseason Poll, Thursday afternoon, in preparation of the start of the spring tennis season.

The Georgia Bulldogs were picked as the overall champion.  Last season, the Bulldogs went 22-5 and reached the round of 16 of the NCAA Championships.  They finished the year ranked No. 8 and won their second straight SEC Tournament title and fifth overall in school history.  Georgia is currently ranked sixth in the ITA Women’s Tennis Rankings.

The Bulldogs were also voted as the Eastern Division Champion, with Florida being voted second.  Vanderbilt was voted third, with Tennessee in fourth, South Carolina in fifth and Kentucky in sixth.

UK just came off a 4-3 win against No. 46 Marshall in Huntington, W. Va., extending the all-time series record to 11-0. Under fourth year head coach Carlos Drada, the Wildcats are now 6-0 in season openers since he took over the program in 2006.

Last season the Blue and White knocked off SEC foes, South Carolina, Alabama, Mississippi State, Tennessee and Ole Miss in the first round of the SEC tournament. Kentucky secured its 18th consecutive NCAA bid while grabbing the program’s 17th top-25 finish with a No. 22 ranking and 16-10 record.

On the Western Division side, Arkansas was picked to dominate, with Auburn in the No. 2 spot.  LSU came in third with Ole Miss in the fourth position.  Alabama and Mississippi State rounded out the list at fifth and sixth, respectively.

The preseason poll is voted on by the SEC Women’s Tennis Coaches and is based on a 6-5-4-3-2-1 count. The complete tally for the poll is below.   

2009 Women’s Tennis Coaches Preseason Poll

Eastern Division
1. Georgia  72
2. Florida  59
3. Vanderbilt  42
4. Tennessee   30
5. South Carolina 26
6. Kentucky   23

Western Division
1. Arkansas  72
2. Auburn  54
3. LSU   50
4. Ole Miss  35
5. Alabama  28
6. Mississippi State 13

Overall Regular Season Champion:  Georgia (11 votes); Arkansas (1)

UK holds its home-opener on Sat., Jan. 30 at the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex in a double-header against East Tennessee State and Eastern Kentucky at 9 a.m. ET and 2 p.m. ET, respectively.