WALTHAM, Massachusetts – After finishing the 2016-17 seasons ranked among the top teams in Division III tennis, the Brandeis University women's and men's teams are once again among the Intercollegiate Tennis Association's Top 20 in the 2017-18 preseason poll. The women are ranked 19th, their best-ever preseason ranking by the ITA, while the men are 20th.
The Brandeis women are coming off a 15-5 season in which they tied the school record for dual-match wins in a season. The Judges return nearly their entire roster from last season, with five of their top six singles players and five of six doubles players – including senior Haley Cohen of Cherry Hill, New Jersey, who played Number 2 last season, and sophomore Sabrina Ross Neergaard of Port Orchard, Washington, who was the team's Number 1 singles and doubles player as a rookie, earning All-University Athletic Association honors - plus four newcomers, including sophomore transfer Diana Dehterevich, who joins the team from Division I Central Florida.
The Judges have eight matches scheduled against nationally-ranked Top 40 opponents, plus the always competitive University Athletic Association tournament at the end of the season. The UAA boasts all eight teams among the top preseason top 40, including second-ranked Emory. The Judges open their season this Saturday evening against Division I Bryant University. They follow that with a trip to California over February break, a trip that includes matches against No. 3 Claremont-Mudd-Scripps, No. 35 University of Redlands and No. 40 CalTech. Their first home match is March 24 against Trinity (Connecticut) College.
The Brandeis men were 12-8 last season and retained their No. 20 ranking after a fine fall season that saw sophomore David Aizenberg of Highland Park, Illinois, and rookie Anupreeth Coramutla of Monroe Township, New Jersey, establish themselves as one of the top doubles teams in New England. Aizenberg and Coramutla earned a spot as the No. 9 tandem in Division III after finishing as runners-up at the ITA New England regional and winning Bates's Wallach Invitational top flight. The Judges will look to replace three graduated seniors who earned All-UAA honors, but Aizenberg and junior Tyler Ng of Great Neck, New York, were second-team All-Association in doubles, playing the No. 2 spot. Ng was also an honorable mention All-UAA selection at No. 4 singles.
The Judges also boast a challenging schedule, with eight Top 40 squads on the slate and a UAA schedule that features seven teams in the top 30, including top-ranked and defending national champions Emory. The men also head to California in February, with a match against No. 12 Pomona-Pitzer on the slate. They open the home season on March 3 against Bates College.