NCAA Mens Tennis

Five Wildcats Featured in ITA Preseason Rankings

Five Wildcats Featured in ITA Preseason Rankings

TEMPE, Ariz. – The Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) announced the preseason national singles and doubles rankings on Monday, and five Wildcats were featured in the rankings.

Colton Smith led the way at No. 23. The Tenino, Wash., native garnered All-Pac-12 First Team honors in 2023 and concluded his sophomore campaign with a 26-11 singles record that included a 13-4 mark at the No. 1 singles spot. He tallied eight wins over nationally ranked opponents last year.

Gustaf Strom, also a 2023 All-Pac-12 First Team honoree, checked in at No. 50. The 2022-23 season saw him tally a 26-11 singles record, and 19 of those wins came during dual match competition. He posted a 17-3 record at No. 3 singles and went 2-0 when playing in the No. 2 spot.

The third Cats player to be ranked was Jay Friend at No. 87. He was one of three Wildcats to chart at least 25 singles wins in 2022-23, compiling a 25-9 overall singles record. Friend posted a combined 14 wins at the No. 5 and No. 6 singles positions.

Nick Lagaev was placed at No. 92 in the rankings. The graduate student concluded his 2022-23 season with 17 singles wins, nine of which came in dual match competition.

Herman Hoeyeraal rounded out the group of ranked Arizona players at No. 99. He charted a 23-win singles season in 2022-23 and defeated two nationally-ranked opponents. Hoeyeraal defeated 10 opponents at No. 4 singles and went 3-0 at No. 2 singles.

Arizona begins its fall season with the Wildcat Invite Sept. 15-17.

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