Shankle Begins NCAA Singles Action Wednesday

Posted at 5:55 PM, May 23, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-23 18:55:17-04

Baylor women’s tennis senior and Big 12 Conference automatic qualifier Blair Shankle begins 2017 NCAA Division I Women’s Singles Championship play at 8 a.m. (CT) on Wednesday, May 24, at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex in Athens, Ga. No. 3-ranked and No. 5 overall seed Shankle will face Tennessee’s Brittany Lindl in the opening round.

Lindl is ranked 42nd nationally after posting an 11-12 dual match record, going 6-12 at the No. 1 position and 5-0 in the No. 2 slot for the Lady Vols this season. Shankle enters the 64-player bracket with an 18-2 dual match record, competing at No. 1 singles all season for the Lady Bears.

Shankle is competing in the NCAA Championship as an individual in singles for the first time since her sophomore season and the second time in her Baylor career. In 2015, she fell in the opening round to No. 11-ranked Stephani Wagner of Miami.

Shankle, the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Most Improved Senior national award recipient, brings a nine-match winning streak into NCAA Championship play. She has compiled an 11-4 mark against ranked foes this year, besting each of the last six ranked opponents she has faced.

The Dallas, Texas, native is a three-time All-Big 12 singles and doubles selection and two-time doubles All-American. Shankle is line to earn her first-ever singles All-American award based on national ranking in her finale season.

In Baylor women’s tennis history, a player has reached the round of 16 12 times, the quarterfinal six times and the semifinal three times. Zuzana Zemanova made the national final twice in her career, winning the lone NCAA singles championship for the Lady Bears in 2005 when she upset No. 3 Audra Cohen of Northwestern. She became the first-ever unseeded singles player to win an NCAA individual title.