INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The Franklin College men's tennis team has been chosen to earn a share of fourth place in the 2019 Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference (HCAC) standings, according to the league's pre-season rankings as voted on by the league's nine coaches.
Franklin collected 53 points to finish tied with Transylvania in the pre-season poll with both teams sitting behind Rose-Hulman, Earlham and Hanover in the rankings. The Grizzlies come into their championship season with a 2-4 record accumulated during a brief fall schedule.
Additionally, three Grizzlies were chosen as "Players to Watch" by the league in junior Blake Amonett, sophomore Jacob Zachary and senior Dean Elrod. Indianapolis, Ind.-native Amonett established himself as the team's top player in the fall, going 4-2 as the team's top singles player while also playing five matches at the top doubles spot. Amonett was a Second Team All-HCAC selection last spring after going 10-6 in singles play and 11-7 in doubles competition, leading Franklin in wins in both areas of competition.
Franklin-native Zachary slid in behind Amonett in the lineup, competing at either the No. 2 or No. 3 spot in singles play and one of the top two doubles teams in the fall. Another 2018 HCAC second team selection, Zachary went 8-10 as a singles player last year, accumulating a 5-3 record as the team's No. 3 singles player.
The team's lone senior, Elrod steps into competition this spring following a 6-7 2017-18 campaign. The Milan, Ind.-native slotted in as the team's No. 6 player last year, going 6-4 from that spot in the lineup while going 2-1 in doubles competition.
Franklin opens the spring season on Saturday, Feb. 16, traveling to Mount Vernon, Ind. for meetings with Cornell College and Millikin University.