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Xavier teams play Tuesday at NAIA national tourney
May 17, 2010

     NEW ORLEANS — Xavier University of Louisiana will continue its record-setting year in athletics and an impressive five-season run when its men's and women's tennis teams compete Tuesday in the NAIA National Championship at Copeland-Cox Tennis Center in Mobile, Ala.
     The Gold Nuggets (16-13), ranked 19th, will play No. 17 Indiana Wesleyan (21-3) in a first-round women's match at 9 a.m. The Gold Rush (12-13), ranked 16th, will play 17th-ranked Tennessee Wesleyan (11-4) in the men's first round at 1 p.m.
     It will be the first time that five Xavier teams compete in NAIA national tournaments during the same academic year. The men's and women's cross country teams did it in November, and the women's basketball team competed in March.
     The bigger picture is even brighter. Twenty-three times in the last five seasons Xavier teams won Gulf Coast Athletic Conference championships, and 17 times the Rush and Nuggets qualified for NAIA National Championships.
     Coach Alan Green's tennis teams have been as strong as any at Xavier during the last five seasons. Both programs have been in every final NAIA top 25 during that time, and they won a combined nine GCAC team championships.
     This is the second straight year that both Xavier teams will compete at the national tournament. The Nuggets are making their fifth appearance at this event, and the Rush will make its second.
     Neither Xavier team has lost a first-round match at nationals — the women are 4-0 — yet neither has advanced past the second round. Reaching the quarterfinals this time again will be formidable, as the defending champions and top-ranked teams — Auburn Montgomery's women and Fresno Pacific's men — have first-round byes and will await the XU-Indiana Wesleyan and XU-Tennessee Wesleyan winners on Wednesday.
     Seniors Anastesia Opata and Angelina Callis, both NAIA All-Americans a year ago, lead the Nuggets. Opata is a two-time GCAC Player of the Year.
     Leading the Gold Rush will be GCAC Player of the Year Steffen Giles-Osborn, a sophomore, and junior Hassan Abbas, the GCAC Newcomer of the Year.
     NOTES: The Weather Channel's Tuesday forecast for Mobile calls for mostly sunny skies, a high of 87 degrees and a 20-percent chance of rain . . . In the Intercollegiate Tennis Association's NAIA individual rankings announced May 7, Opata was 24th in women's singles, and the Opata-Callis doubles team was 25th. Giles-Osborn was 44th in men's singles.

 

 
Gulf Coast Athletic Conference
National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics

The Xavier Gold Rush and Gold Nuggets compete in Division I of the NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics) as a member of the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference (GCAC). Xavier fields men's and women's teams in basketball, cross country and tennis.

Department of Intercollegiate Athletics
Xavier University of Louisiana
1 Drexel Drive
Campus Box 92
New Orleans, LA 70125
(504) 520-7329 phone
(504) 520-7934 fax

 
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