Furman Women Favored in SoCon Tennis

Championship at Champions Cub

Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - by B.B. Branton

On Tuesday, the Furman women’s tennis team took home important Southern Conference hardware – Player, Freshman and Coach of the Year honors.

But what the Paladins dearly want is to put their collective hands on the team championship trophy Saturday afternoon at the Champions Club courts.

The Paladins’ Debbie Southern is coach of the year and Ansley Speaks captured freshman and player of the year honors.

Furman has the No.1 seed, a 9-0 SoCon record, and is the solid favorite to win, but seeds 2-4  Samford, Chattanooga and Elon hope to have a voice, maybe a loud voice, in who wins on Saturday.

If You Are Going

SoCon Tennis Tournament:

Place: Champions Club in Rivermont

Wed-Sat.

Admission: Free

Go to SoCon.com for men’s and women’s brackets and results

Wednesday Schedule

Men’s Matches – both at 11 a.m. (new time from original schedule)

No.8 Davidson vs. No.9 UTC … No 7 Wofford vs. No.10 The Citadel

Women’s Matches - both at 3 p.m. (new time)

No. 8 Davidson vs. No.9 Wofford

No.7 App State vs. No.10 Western Carolina

Thursday – Quarters … Friday – Semis … Saturday - Finals

 

Preview of Top Four Women’s Seeds

No.1 Seed - Furman (16-5, 9-0) - beat No.2 Samford, No.3 Chattanooga and No.4 Elon, all 4-3

Led by Ansley Speaks – 2014 Freshman of the Year, 2014 Player of the Year …

Coach – Debbie Southern (30th season - 451 wins) ITA Women’s Collegiate Tennis Hall of Fame

Team: Speaks (15-5 in singles) is one of three starting freshmen and is joined by doubles players Katherine Oudin/Alex Moreno-Kaste on the SoCon first team … Speaks, Karlee Bryde and Blair Martin made the SoCon All-Freshman Team … Katherine Oudin is younger sister of Melanie Oudin who reached the U.S. Open quarters in 2009 and was U.S. Open mixed doubles champ ... the Oudin’s are relatives of the late Frank Willett who was a standout tennis player at Ga. Tech in the 1940s, moved to Chattanooga in late 1950s and was a top adult player throughout the South … 

SoCon Titles – 16 … last won it in 2008 …

No.2 Seed - Samford (18-2, 8-1) … comes in with 7 match win streak and 16 of last 17 … loss was at Furman … only other loss was to Auburn … beat UTC (4-3) and Elon (5-2)

Top Players - Stephanie N’tcha is first team All-SoCon singles and doubles (w/Kristen Lewis)

No.6 singles Lauren Caballero (12-4 in singles this spring) led Ravenwood (Tenn.) to a pair of D-I AAA state titles and she won two doubles state crowns

SoCon Titles - None

No.3 Seed - Chattanooga (17-4, 7-2) … 10-0 at home this season … and 13 straight over two years … last loss at home was to Furman (4-3), March 24, 2013 … 29-3 at home last three years … has first team All-SoCon players in Kayla Jones (singles) and Kaylene Chadwell/Alexa Flynn (doubles) …  senior Flynn has 74 career singles wins and 73 in doubles … Chadwell (Tenn.) and Kelsey Coots (Ala.) were prep state champions … Mocs beat Elon, 4-3, and lost to Samford and Furman, 4-3, both matches on the road.

Coach – Jeff Clark  (10th year; 130-93)   took team to SoCon semis in 2012 …

SoCon Titles – 5 (1984-85-86-88-90) … UTC won the inaugural SoCon title 30 years ago in 1984 … and claimed 5 of the first 7 … last title came in 1990

No.4 Seed – Elon (12-8, 6-3) … 8-1 at home … lost 4-3 to Furman …

Sr. Jordan Johnston is first team All-SoCon … has win over SoCon player of the year, Ansley Speaks …

In 2013… Elon beat Furman, 4-0, in semis and lost to College of Charleston in final ... No.4 Elon and No.1 Furman are in the top half bracket and should meet in Friday’s semis.

SoCon Titles - 0

contact B.B. Branton at william.branton@comcast.net


Ooltewah Horned Frogs Go From 6 Seed To Championship

The Ooltewah Horned Frogs won the OYA (9-11) Championship.   The Horned Frogs entered the tournament as a 6 th seed, but were able to pull of multiple victories en route to the championship game.  The Frogs claimed the championship with a hard-fought 30-21 victory.   Team members include Noah Camp, Ty Dearing, Hayden Choate, Sean Helferich, ... (click for more)

Higher Calling Wrestlers Repeat As State Champs

Following on the heels of the Cleveland Blue Raiders winning a third consecutive state championship, the Higher Calling Kids Wrestling Club also dominated the Tennessee AAU State Championship tournament held over the weekend in Cookeville. The club, coached by Josh Bosken, accumulated a total of 635.5 tournament team points, which is up from 440.5 points scored a year ago.  ... (click for more)

County Under Winter Weather Advisory; Hamilton County Schools On 2-Hour Delay

Temperatures were mild on Wednesday, reaching 74 degrees, but they began dropping as the day went on - leading to a winter weather advisory. The advisory goes into effect at 4 a.m. on Thursday and is to continue until 4 p.m. The forecast is for freezing rain and sleet. Hamilton County Schools will be on two-hour delay on Thursday . School officials said, "Based on the National ... (click for more)

Grand Jury Indicts Mark Kaylor In Alleged Beating Case; He Resigns From Red Bank Police; His Attorney Asks For Trial

A Red Bank officer was indicted on Wednesday by the Hamilton County Grand Jury on charges related to an alleged assault against a detainee. At the same time, Red Bank Police Chief Tim Christol said he had accepted the resignation of Officer Mark Kaylor. The Hamilton County District Attorney General’s Office earlier said it had reviewed the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation ... (click for more)

Women Don't Ask For Rape, They Ask For Justice

The stereotypical irrationality that women typically lie about rape has brought an enormous amount of social stigma to this population. Many like to think that rape is not a huge issue in the United States, and that the media blows it out of proportion. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) reported that approximately 17.7 million females in America have been raped, with 108,612 ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Happy Birthday, Mr. Berg

This past Monday we should have closed the Post Office, let kids out of school, and lowered our flags to half-mast. March 2 is the anniversary of Moe Berg’s birthday and the legendary Casey Stengel once said Moe was “the strangest man ever to play baseball.” Moe played major league baseball for 16 years, finishing with the Boston Red Sox in 1939 and a lifetime batting average of ... (click for more)