Tennis Players Sweep SEC Weekly Honors; Rankings Released

by LSUsports.net (@LSUsports)
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Tennis Players Sweep SEC Weekly Honors; Rankings Released

BATON ROUGE — The LSU men’s tennis team received both of the weekly honors handed out by the Southeastern Conference on Wednesday as junior Michael Venus was named SEC Player of the Week and Sebastian Carlsson was named SEC Freshman of the Week.

The weekly honors come after the Tigers (11-6, 4-4 SEC) put together their strongest weekend of conference play last week with a dominating win against 70th-ranked South Carolina, 6-1, on Friday and a thrilling upset win over eighth-ranked Florida, 4-3, on Sunday.

The team was also rewarded for its strong play by jumping three spots to No. 16 in the latest rankings released by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association this week.

Carlsson has now been named SEC Freshman of the Week three times. The SEC Player of the Week honor is a first for Venus.

Venus jumped from No. 74 to 47 in the singles rankings. The 6-3 junior captured two straight-sets victories this past weekend, including the biggest win of his career by handily defeating third-ranked Greg Ouellette of Florida, 6-3, 6-4. The win against the four-time ITA All-American proved to be crucial as LSU upset eighth-ranked Florida by a 4-3 margin. Venus owns five wins against ranked opponents this season.

Senior Jan Zelezny remained in the singles rankings as he was listed at No. 118.

After not being in the rankings, the duo of Venus and James Cluskey appeared at No. 30 in the latest doubles rankings. The Tiger tandem cruised in both of their matches this past weekend to push their team-best record to 12-3. The LSU pair finished the regular season a perfect 10-0 at home.

Carlsson clinched both of LSU’s victories this past weekend. Carlsson’s biggest win of the season came Sunday when he clinched the Florida upset in the last match with a 6-4, 2-6, 6-1 win against Erik Corace.

The 6-foot freshman clinched LSU’s win over 70th-ranked South Carolina by breezing past David Wolff, 7-5, 6-2. Carlsson leads the Tigers in wins this season with 22. 18 of Carlsson’s wins have come in straight-sets.

Carlsson and doubles partner Zelezny’s 8-3 win against Florida’s Geoffery Barton and Tyler Hochwalt proved to be crucial as Florida won on court two and LSU ended up winning by a 4-3 margin.

The Tigers will be on the road next weekend when they travel to Mississippi to take on Mississippi State on Friday and seventh-ranked Ole Miss on Sunday.

Men’s Team, Singles and Doubles Rankings
Administered by the ITA
NCAA Division I Tennis
April 1, 2008

Team
Rank  School  Avg 
1 Virginia  86.5
2 Ohio State  82.8
3 Georgia  79.3
4 UCLA  67.5
5 Southern California  67.2
6 Texas  67.1
7 Mississippi  63.9
8 Tennessee 56.1
9 Florida State  54.6
10 North Carolina  53.1
11 Florida  51.9
12 Tulsa  51.7
13 Pepperdine  48.6
14 Michigan  45.3
15 Baylor  42.1
16 LSU 41.8
17 Illinois  41
18 Texas Tech  38.6
19 Rice  36.5
20 Texas A&M  36.3
21 Oklahoma State  35.6
22 Arizona State  32.9
23 Washington  32.2
24 Alabama  31.8
25 Stanford  31.4