Trojan Tennis Locked Into Nation’s Top 10 To Start The New Year

    The ball drops on the 2016 tennis season, with both USC teams ranked in the nation's top 10.
    Jan. 5, 2016

    The USC men’s and women’s tennis programs will kick off their newest campaigns holding powerful top-10 rankings. The Women of Troy — NCAA semifinalists in 2015 — start the new year right where they left off, as the No. 2 team in the land. The USC men, meanwhile, are also locked in among the nation’s best, ranked No. 8 in the country to open the 2016 season’s action. The women also boast two doubles teams in the nation’s top-15, led by the senior-sophomore combo of Giuliana Olmos and Gabby Smith, who stand as the No. 4-ranked doubles pair. On the singles side, there are five USC women and six USC men standing tall in the national singles rankings.

    For Richard Gallien’s 2016 Women of Troy, the No. 2 national ranking is a significant upgrade from last season’s No. 14 start. It’s well deserved, however, as the USC women are coming off a run to the 2015 NCAA Semifinals, and the Women of Troy look strong once again for the season to come. Led by lone senior Giuliana Olmos — who ranks #42 in the nation in singles and is also ranked at two spots in doubles, including the #4 pairing with sophomore Gabby Smith — the USC women have two freshmen standing out in the national rankings alongside three ranked returners. Freshman Rianna Valdes is next in line at #48 in the nation, followed by sophomore Madison Westby at #49 and freshman Jessica Failla at #76. Junior Zoë Katz also is locked into the singles rankings at #114.



    In doubles, the #4 pairing of Olmos and Smith earned their status as fall champions at the Oracle/ITA Masters Championships. Smith also paired to marked success with freshman Failla in the fall, and the duo has thusly picked up the #13 ranking in the nation. Olmos weighs in for another set of rankings as a doubles pair alongside freshman Valdes. Together, the senior-freshman tandem is ranked #54 to start 2016.

    The USC men — with Peter Smith at the helm — also have a solid set of newcomers helping to drive the Trojans into 2016. NCAA Quarterfinalists last season, the 2016 Trojans have six players standing out in the nation’s singles rankings. Junior Nick Crystal leads them all with a career-best singles ranking of #41 after his strong fall efforts. USC’s veteran talent is balanced out with three freshmen also pulling up early singles rankings. Junior Connor Farren has grabbed the first singles ranking of his Trojan career, weighing in at No. 76, while USC’s lone senior, Max de Vroome, ranks #115. Those three newcomers are mixed in among the vets. Freshman Logan Smith is USC’s second-highest ranked player at #69 in the lang. Fellow freshman Jake DeVine has secured a spot at #83, and freshman Kalman Boyd sits at #104. The USC men do not have any ranked doubles pairs to start out 2016.

    2016 Oracle/ITA National Rankings
    (as of Jan. 5, 2016)

    USC WOMEN - #2

    Singles #42 Giuliana Olmos
    #48 Rianna Valdes
    #49 Madison Westby
    #76 Jessica Failla
    #114 Zoë Katz

    #4 Giuliana Olmos / Gabby Smith
    #13 Jessica Failla / Gabby Smith
    #54 Giuliana Olmos / Rianna Valdes

    USC MEN - #8

    #41 Nick Crystal
    #69 Logan Smith
    #76 Connor Farren
    #83 Jake DeVine
    #104 Kalman Boyd
    #115 Max de Vroome