2019 Year in Review:
NCAAs debut at National Campus
Arthur Kapetanakis | December 12, 2019
As 2019 draws to a close, USTA.com is taking a look back at the top storylines, headlines and highlights from the year in American tennis. Here, we revisit a historic year in college tennis.
The Texas men and Stanford women will remember 2019 for the way the college season ended—with the NCAA Division I trophy raised above their heads. But the college game itself was a big winner this year, rising up a few levels behind backing from the USTA and Tennis Channel.
For the first time ever, the USTA National Campus in Orlando, Fla., hosted the Division I NCAA Championships, earning rave reviews from fans, players and coaches alike. For 10 days, college tennis took over the campus, as eight men's and eight women's teams battled it out for the title before the individual singles and doubles events. ADVERTISEMENT More than 50 hours of live coverage was broadcast on Tennis Channel throughout the event, a byproduct of a three-year partnership between the network and the USTA.
Whether they watched on TV or in person, viewers were treated to the sort of see-saw, head-on-a-swivel drama that only college tennis can provide. The Texas men claimed their first title by dethroning defending champs Wake Forest in the final, sweeping four singles points after dropping the doubles. As for Stanford, the Cardinal extended its NCAA record to 20 team titles, toppling No. 1 seed Georgia in a 4-0 final sweep.
Both champions finished atop the Tennis Channel/USTA College Tennis Top 25 poll as the unanimous No. 1 teams.
The campus also hosted the Division I individuals, with three Americans ending the year with trophies held high. It was a UCLA sweep in the doubles competitions, with Maxime Cressy and Keegan Smith taking the men's title, and Gabby Andrews teaming with Canada's Ayan Broomfield for the women's crown.
UCLA's co-ed club team was also victorious at Tennis on Campus in April.
Back at the USTA National Campus, College MatchDay continued to be a success in its third year on site. More than 15,000 fans have attended in those three years combined, with an average of more than 1,000 per match. After five event days during the 2019 spring season, all of which were broadcast on Tennis Channel, three more marquee matchups are set for 2020 at the campus.
To cap off this historic year in college tennis, Team USA won its second consecutive and ninth overall title at the Master'U BNP Paribas event in Grenoble, France. UCLA's Smith played a major role in the U.S. title run, teaming with Aleks Kovacevic (Illinois) for the clinching doubles point against Great Britain in the championship match.
Also representing the U.S. in France were Michaela Gordon (Stanford), Alexa Graham (North Carolina), Jada Hart (UCLA) and Alexandre Rotsaert (Stanford). All six team members will return to their respective campuses for the 2020 spring season, as they look to build on their international success in the new year.
For more American tennis highlights from 2019, check out our Year in Review page here.