Hogs’ tennis starts dual match part of season at No. 18

PHOTO BY RAZORBACK SPORTS COMMUNICATIONS

TEMPE, Ariz. — Following a successful fall season, Arkansas will enter the dual match portion of the 2017-18 campaign as the nation’s No. 18 ranked team, announced by Oracle and the Intercollegiate Tennis Association on Wednesday.

One of nine SEC teams featured in the top 25, the Razorbacks’ No. 18 ranking is their highest since opening at No. 14 in 2009.

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“We know that our successful fall season has us well positioned for a strong run this spring season,” coach Michael Hegarty said. “The excitement is high, and we look forward to growing throughout the spring to fulfill our potential.”

A national rankings panel voted on the top 25 teams, and will do so up to the ITA Division I National Team Indoor Championship in February. Upon the conclusion of the national event, team rankings will transition to the computerized system.

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The 2018 campaign will mark the Razorbacks’ 15th season under Hegarty, who is the program’s all-time winningest coach with 197 victories and the 2017 Wilson/ITA Central Region Coach of the Year.

Arkansas will return the bulk of its 2017 roster that finished No. 19 in the final national rankings with an 18-10 (7-6 SEC) record.

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Arkansas defeated 11 teams featured in the final national rankings, including No. 14 Auburn, No. 16 Texas A&M, No. 21 LSU and No. 24 Tennessee, and held a spot in the top 20 in each of the last 10 weeks of the season.

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