Athens, Ga. - The NCAA conducted the draw for the women's tennis doubles national championships late last night following the conclusion of the team championship match and the 57th-ranked Stetson duo of freshman Carolina de los Santos (Montevideo, Uruguay) and Valentina Galbarini (Montevideo, Uruguay) have been matched up against Wichita State's Stephanie Dalmacio and Delia Damaschin in the first round. Dalmacio and Damaschin are ranked 40th in the latest ITA doubles national poll.
Galbarini and de los Santos, who will be Stetson's inaugural representatives in the NCAA Women's Tennis Championships, put together an 18-7 overall record in spring dual matches but made the most noise on the national tennis scene in the fall with a run to the semifinals of the ITA Southeast Region championships in Atlanta, Ga. in late October. The duo defeated then sixth-ranked Nadja Gilchrist and Chelsey Gullickson of Georgia for the highlight of the weekend. After the spring dual match season, de los Santos was named Atlantic Sun Conference Freshman of the Year and First Team All-Atlantic Sun while Galbarini was named to the A-Sun First Team for the third year in a row.
Just as Galbarini and de los Santos did from the A-Sun, Dalmacio and Damaschin earned an automatic bid to the doubles championships as the highest-ranked Missouri Valley Conference combination. The two Shockers did not actually compete together for the second half of the spring season but still formed a potent enough tandem to defeat the top pairs from three different Top 75 squads (BYU, Rice and Utah). Wichita State won the MVC championship for the fourth time in five years. Both Dalmacio and Damaschin earned All-MVC honors in singles and in doubles.
If the two Hatters advance to the second round of the 32-team bracket, they would face either the secondary seed (5-8) combination of Marrit Boonstra and Allie Will (Florida) or Michigan's Whitney Taney and Rika Tatsuno. Boonstra and Will are ranked fifth in the latest ITA release while Taney and Tatsuno come in at #19.
Doubles play begins at 10 a.m. Thursday, May 27; live stat links are available at http://www.ncaa.com/sports/c-tennis/champpage/c-tennis-div1-index.html