University of Mary Washington sophomore Rachel Summers and juniors Derek Hagino and Patrick Hughes will compete at the Intercollegiate Tennis Association's Oracle Cup national championship, starting on Thursday in Rome, Ga.
Summers will compete in the Division III women's singles draw, and will face fourth seeded Claire Handa of the University of Chicago at 9:00 a.m. Hagino and Hughes will play in the Division III men's doubles draw, and will play fourth seeded Jeremy Yuan and Tyler Raclin of the University of Chicago at 3:30 p.m.
Four divisions of collegiate tennis converge on the Rome Tennis Center at Berry College in Rome, Georgia, to take part in the ITA Oracle Cup. The 2017 event gets underway on Thursday, October 11th, and runs through Sunday, October 15th.
The stakes for the 2017 event have been raised, with more student-athletes receiving an opportunity to qualify for the Oracle ITA National Fall Championships, where they will compete in the same tournament as the nation's top Division I players.
In previous years, only one singles player had earned that distinction, by winning the "Oracle Cup", which pitted the four divisional winners against each other for the right to play in the fall season's final tournament. This year, each of the four divisional champions (Divisions II, III, NAIA and JUCO) will be automatically entered in the Oracle ITA National Fall Championships, which takes place November 1-5, in Palm Desert, California.
Men's and women's doubles will still take part and compete for the Oracle Cup, with the winners of those draws moving on to the Oracle ITA National Fall Championships.
Formerly known as the Small College Nationals, the ITA Oracle Cup has history dating back to 1986, and it is the only singles and doubles national championship event for the Division II and NAIA levels. This year, more than 8,000 players took part in a total of 60 regional tournaments to gain entry into the ITA Oracle Cup field.
Each division represented will feature eight singles players and eight doubles teams, competing in their respective draws. Oliver Frank of Azusa Pacific and Camille Gbaguidi of SCAD won the Oracle Cup singles titles in 2016, and return as the No. 1 seeds in the Division II men and NAIA women's draws, respectively.
Head to the ITA Oracle Cup event page to view draws, daily recaps, photo gallery links, as well as find live scoring information. You can also follow the conversation on Twitter by following @ITA_Tennis and using the hashtag #OracleCup.