The Seward County Community College womenís tennis team finished in 16th place at the NJCAA Tournament in Tucson, Ariz. Sophomore Erica Herrera and freshman Valerie Stevens placed in the round of eight, and freshman Alyssa Larson won the consolation bracket to highlight the top performances for the Lady Saints at the national tournament. It is the third straight year that SCCC has finished in the Top 20 at nationals, after finishing 14th in 2007 and in 10th in 2006. Hillsborough Community College won the NJCAA national championship with 45 points, followed by Tyler Junior College (44 points), Lee College (43 points), Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College (42 points) and Collin County Community College (39.5 points) to round out the top five.

Stevens, a Midland, Texas native won her opening match in No. 4 singles, 6-3, 6-4, over No. 4 ranked Lee College. She then advanced to the round of eight with a second round victory over Scottsdale Community College, 6-3, 6-1. Stevens was defeated by No. 5 ranked Abraham Baldwin, who advanced to the semifinals with a 2-6, 1-6 victory. Stevens finished her freshman campaign with an 8-6 singles record.

Herrera capped off a standout Lady Saint career in the round of eight at nationals with victories over University of Arkansas-Fort Smith (6-1, 6-2) in the opening round and with a win over Region VI foe Johnson County Community College, 6-0, 6-1, in the round of 16. Herrera, the No. 8 ranked player in her classification, was knocked out of tournament play by No. 2 Tyler J.C. (0-6, 1-6). Herrera posted a 10-4 record as a sophomore this year.

Larson played the most national tournament matches after losing her opening match to No. 7 Abraham Baldwin (2-6, 5-7), and then winning her next four matches to claim the consolation bracket championship in No. 6 singles.

Larsonís path in the consolation bracket began with an 8-2 victory over Muskegon C.C. She then defeated Central Alabama (8-2) and Snead State (8-4) to earn a berth in the consolation bracket finals. Larson defeated Meridian Community College by a narrow 9-7 margin in her final match of tournament play. Larson completed the season with an 11-5 overall singles record.

Other singles competition included No. 1 singles player Fabiola Wisnesky, who went 0-2 losing to Glendale Community College (2-6, 3-6) and Meridian C.C. (1-8). Sophomore Sanela Dejanovic finished her SCCC career with back-to-back losses at No. 2 singles against Cowley College (0-6, 0-6) and Mississippi Gulf Coast C.C. (4-8).

Freshman Juliana Boas was ousted in two straight matches dropping a 3-6, 0-6 decision to Florida Community College and with a 4-8 loss against Central Florida Community College.

Larson and Stevens picked up an opening round No. 2 doubles victory over Scottsdale C.C. (6-2, 6-4) before losing in the round of 16 to Florida C.C. (2-6, 6-3, 1-6) in three sets.

Dejanovic and Herrera, the two sophomores of the team, defeated Snead State in the opening round of No. 3 doubles play (6-2, 6-1) before exiting the tournament with a 0-6, 3-6 loss to No. 3 ranked Tyler J.C.

Wisnesky and Boas teamed at No. 1 doubles where they were defeated in consecutive matches, starting with a 3-6, 0-6 loss against Florida C.C., and they were shutout 0-8 against national champion Hillsborough C.C.