Winner of the last 12 consecutive Upper Midwest Athletic Conference men's tennis championships, the College of St. Scholastica was picked to repeat its league title again in 2009, according to a pre-season poll voted on by the conference's coaches. The Saints received 25 points and five first-place votes to lead the pack of six UMAC tennis teams. St. Scholastica returns only two of last year's 10 letter winners. However, one of those returning individuals is junior Dillon Sterle, who was chosen as the UMAC Player of the Year in 2008 after going 6-2 in singles play.
Northwestern College came in second in the poll, trailing St. Scholastica by four points at 21. The Eagles, who took second in the 2008 UMAC standings, return four of the team's six starters from a year ago. Most of those returners will move up in singles play though, as Northwestern's Nos. 1 and 3 singles from last year departed due to graduation.
Coming in third place in the poll's results was Martin Luther College, who earned 15 points. The Knights return senior Jonathan Kehl, who went 7-1 in doubles action last season. Martin Luther wrapped up its 2008 UMAC schedule in third place.
Bethany Lutheran College (12 points), the University of Minnesota-Morris (10 points) and new UMAC associate member North Central University (seven points) rounded out the final three teams of the preseason poll.
After the conference regular season, all six teams will come together for the UMAC conference tournament, which will be held on May 1-2, 2009 at the Baseline Tennis Center on the campus of the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, Minn.
25 Points - College of St. Scholastica (5 first place votes)
21 Points - Northwestern College (1 first place vote)
15 Points - Martin Luther College
12 Points - Bethany Lutheran College
10 Points - University of Minnesota, Morris
7 Points - North Central University