AKRON, Ohio – The University of Akron women's tennis team was ranked eighth in the Midwest in the final Oracle/Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Division I rankings for the 2016-17 academic year.
Individually, junior Sophia Geier (Burgebrach, Germany) was ranked 11th among the Top 20 Midwest players.
"Individually and collectively this group of young women continues to impress and show just how valuable to the university and Akron community they truly are," said Akron head coach Brandon Padgett. "With all of the individual success that we saw this season, I am equally impressed with and extremely proud of this team for the outstanding accomplishments that they achieved this past season. It has been awhile since the team has broken into the year end Midwest Regional ranking as well. The Midwest Region is filled with strong Power 5 teams, so for this group to perform at the level they did all year long, and finish ranked where they did, is a testament to their talent and work ethic."
The last time the Zips were regionally ranked was an eighth-place rank in 2012-13. Seniors Prang Pantusart and Angelina Jogasuria became the first pair in school history to end the season nationally ranked (#43) while earning a No. 4 standing in the Midwest doubles rankings in 2013.
"We have not had an individual or doubles team finish the season in the Midwest Regional rankings since the 2012-13 season, so I am extremely proud of Sophia for making the list this year," Padgett continued. "More impressively, we had Ariadna Blinova (Riga, Latvia) finish the fall season regionally ranked, and Sophia was nationally ranked during the spring season as well, so they certainly set the bar high for us individually for next season!"
Akron finished the 2016-17 season with a 23-4 overall record and a second-place finish in the Mid-American Conference with 7-1 mark. UA set the school record with a 22-match winning streak (Feb. 4-April 22) and was undefeated in conference play until the final regular-season match.
Geier, who finished the year at 30-3 in singles action, including 23-2 this spring, was the 2017 MAC Player of the Year and a first-team All-MAC selection. Named the team's Most Valuable Player, Geier led the Zips at No. 1 singles with a 23-2 overall record, including 7-1 in MAC play this spring. She was named the MAC Singles Player of the Week three times. Recently named to the 2017 College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Academic All-District 5 At-Large team, Geier is a two-time Academic All-MAC selection and a two-time ITA Scholar Athlete. The team captain has 3.898 GPA in sport management.
Oracle/ITA Division I Women's Tennis Rankings
June 7, 2017
1. Ohio State
3. Notre Dame
6. Michigan State
10. Youngstown State