McCullough ranked 35th in singles in ITA national rankings

McCullough ranked 35th in singles in ITA national rankings

TEMPE, Ariz. --- Tusculum University junior Annie McCullough is ranked 35th in singles in Division II in the first Oracle/Intercollegiate Tennis Association women's national rankings of the 2018-19 season.

McCullough is also ranked seventh in the ITA Southeast Region after winning 10 of her 11 matches during the fall portion of the Pioneers' 2018-19 schedule.

The Belfast, Northern Ireland native defeated four Division I opponents during fall tournaments, while winning the A Draw singles title at the Grizzly Open at Georgia Gwinnett College in mid-October. McCullough was also a quarterfinalist in the ITA Southeast Regional Championship, taking her only loss to 10th-ranked Luise Sachs of Columbus State.

McCullough opened fall competition with a 6-1, 6-0 win over Marylin Roustand of King in the Pioneers' 7-0 victory over the Tornado on Sept. 19. At the ITA Southeast Regional, McCullough beat 46th-ranked Candace Paya of Columbus State 6-4, 6-3 in the round of 16 to move into the quarterfinals.

At the Western Carolina Invitational, McCullough earned a pair of straight-set wins while playing number-one singles for the Pioneers. She beat Lauren McCall of Western Carolina 6-4, 6-2 and defeated Sydney Patton of Presbyterian 6-1, 7-6.

During competition at the Grizzly Open, McCullough beat Lea Krajcovicova of Alabama State 7-5, 6-0 in the round of 16, then won three straight matches in tiebreakers to claim the singles championships. She beat Reka Szentes of Alabama State 6-7, 6-3, (10-4) in the quarterfinals, then beat a pair of NAIA ranked opponents from Georgia Gwinnett to win the title. McCullough defeated 24th-ranked Ceire Mullins 6-4, 2-6 (10-8) in the semifinals and 13th-ranked Henar Munoz 6-3, 1-6, (11-9) in the final.

McCullough has a career dual match singles record of 37-4 and has won 22 consecutive matches dating back to the 2017 season. She was ranked as high as 55th in Division II in last year's ITA national rankings.

The Pioneers went 21-3 last season and picked up their first victory in the NCAA Division II Tournament since 2003. Tusculum finished the year ranked 14th in the final ITA Division II poll of the season after reaching as high as 13th during the regular season.

Tusculum will begin its spring dual match schedule on Saturday, Feb. 9 at home against Virginia-Wise.