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Tough Schedule Preparing Tech Tennis for GAC

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Three non-conference tune-up matches remain for the Arkansas Tech tennis team before the Golden Suns enter Great American Conference competition.

The Golden Suns are 5-5 so far this season. Three of their losses have come to nationally-ranked opponents. Thirty-seventh ranked Drury University (9-3) defeated Arkansas Tech 6-3 at the Chartwells Women's Sports Complex on Monday.

Head coach Abby Davis and the Golden Suns will conclude the pre-conference portion of their schedule by facing LeMoyne-Owen College and Rhodes College on Thursday, March 22, and by hosting Northeastern State University for a 2:30 p.m. match at the Chartwells Women's Sports Complex on Tuesday, March 27.

Arkansas Tech will begin its inaugural GAC tennis schedule on Friday, March 30, with a match at Southern Arkansas University.

The Golden Suns were picked to finish second in the GAC in a preseason poll of the league's head tennis coaches. Harding University was the preseason favorite to win the inaugural GAC women's tennis title. Arkansas Tech defeated the Lady Bisons 5-4 in non-conference play at Searcy last Friday.

In fact, the Golden Suns are 4-0 in non-conference matches against fellow GAC members this season. Tech also owns wins over Henderson State, Southern Arkansas and Ouachita Baptist in non-conference play.

The Golden Suns' 2012 tennis roster consists of four seniors (Mariel Alvarez, Akanesi Fa, Rachel Stevens and Brittany Turner), three juniors (Maria Aleman, Nina Greenway and Jessica Velasaquez) and two freshmen (Aida Castany and Allison Grahl).

Once GAC play begins, those nine student-athletes will try to do something that Arkansas Tech has only done once before --- win a conference title in women's tennis. The Golden Suns were tennis champions of the Arkansas Intercollegiate Conference in 1995.

Click here to learn more about Golden Suns tennis.