Castellvi reclaims No. 1 ranking

After a few months absence, Lady Vol Vilmarie Castellvi has returned to the No. 1 ranking in women's collegiate tennis.

Castellvi is rated tops in the Omni Hotels Collegiate Tennis Rankings, administered and released by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) on earlier today. She entered last fall ranked No. 1, becoming the first player in program history to earn the coveted top rating. The Guaynabo, Puerto Rico, native entered the spring ranked fourth on Jan. 13 and then held a No. 3-billing for the rankings released on Feb. 26 and March 12 and 26.

Castellvi has compiled an impressive overall record of 36-4 in singles and is 21-1 at No. 1 singles in dual matches. She has been just as successful in doubles, combining with freshman Melissa Schaub for a 23-6 mark that includes a 16-5 record in dual-match play at No. 1 doubles. Castellvi and Schaub are rated fifth nationally in today's rankings.

Making Castellvi's 36-4 mark even more astounding is the fact that most of her victories have come against some of the nation's best players. She is 30-3 against Top 125 opponents, including a 13-1 ledger against the Top 25. The highest ranked player she defeated this season was then-No. 2 Kelly McCain of Duke. McCain is now No. 3.

Lady Vol teammate Crystal Cleveland made a huge jump in today's rankings, catapulting from 104 to 59. Cleveland pulled a stunning upset over then-29th-rated Zerene Reyes of Florida last week. Cleveland is 29-8 this season and 20-3 in dual matches. Junior Tammy Encina also appears in the ratings for the first time as a NCAA Division I player. She checks in at No. 82. A transfer from Cal State-Los Angeles, Encina was a regular in the rankings at the Division II level her freshman and sophomore years. Encina and sophomore Majen Immink are ranked No. 41 in doubles.

Castellvi and the rest of the ninth-ranked Lady Vols will wrap up the regular season this Saturday, when they host No. 6 Georgia at noon. The marquee matchup of the contest pits Castellvi against the nation's No. 2-ranked player, Agata Cioroch, at No. 1 singles.

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