15th-Seeded Clemson Set to Take on Second-Seeded Florida

May 19, 2011

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More Coverage from Wednesday Recap | Ciolkowski’s Toughness | Postseason Guide 

CLEMSON, SC – The Clemson women’s tennis team, one of only three teams to reach the Sweet 16 going on the road for the first and second rounds, will take on second-seeded Florida (27-1) on Friday at 3:00 pm eastern in Stanford, CA. Clemson (21-10) is in the third round of the NCAA Tournament for the seventh time in the last eight seasons.

Live scoring and video will be available at The Gators and Tigers will appear on the Taube Family Tennis Center Stadium Courts.

Clemson owns a 24-17 all-time NCAA mark, and is 21-9 in the last ten seasons in the tournament.

The Tigers and Gators met earlier this season at the Round of Eight of the ITA Team National Indoor Championships, a 4-0 Florida win (read recap). The Gators won the SEC Championship and are ranked No. 1 in the most recent ITA Team Poll. Their lone loss came against undefeated Stanford, this year’s host.

The teams’ top doubles combinations have met three times during the school year, with Florida’s group of Allie Will and Sofie Oyen defeating Clemson’s Josipa Bek and Keri Wong in the ITA Individual Doubles Championship match. Bek and Wong downed the Florida duo on two other occasions, in the ITA All-American tournament, and during the round of eight dual match at the top flight.

Clemson has been in California since Monday, the day after knocking off Arkansas, 4-2, in Fayetteville in the second round. The Tigers practiced on Wednesday, and will work for a few hours on Thursday as well.

The Tigers have been on the road for nine days already, and have traveled more than 3,400 miles in that time.

Florida presents a tremendous challenge for the Tigers, as they feature six top-100 singles players and five in the top 55.

Clemson features three ranked players, including No. 11 Josipa Bek and No. 48 Keri Wong, each of whom has earned a bid to the NCAA Singles and Doubles Championships, which begin on May 25 at Stanford.

Bek has earned a national 9-16 seed in the 64-player singles field, and the duo are a national 5-8 seed in the 32-team doubles tournament after finishing the regular season ranked sixth nationally.

Sophomore Nelly Ciolkowski, who clinched the match for Clemson against Arkansas, comes in at No. 114 in singles, and will play at the No. 4 position.

Wong is playing some of her best tennis right now, as she won all four of her matches (two singles, two doubles) at the Arkansas Regional.

The winner will take on the winner of the Michigan and Miami matchup on Sunday.