Two-time defending Minnesota state class A singles champion Alexa Palen has signed a National Letter of Intent to play women’s tennis at the University of Minnesota.
Palen, who starred at Rochester Lourdes High School, went undefeated for her high school team the past two seasons and is the top-ranked player in the U.S. Tennis Association’s Northern Section. She is a five-start recruit according to tennisrecruiting.net and is ranked No. 58 in the country. Palen was also a member of five state team championships at Lourdes.
“We are extremely excited that Alexa chose to attend Minnesota,” said Gophers’ coach Tyler Thomson. “She is an excellent athlete with a very versatile game, and she will strengthen our team immediately. We’re very eager for her career as a Gopher to begin.”
Palen dropped only one game in four matches at the state tournament this season and also won all four of her matches in straight sets as a junior. She was a finalist in the K-Swiss National Open in Chicago in 2007 and won the National Open in Minneapolis in 2007. Palen also reached the round of 16 in the Summer Hard Courts national tournament in 2007.
She will become the fourth member of her family to play college tennis as her sisters, Jill and Alyssa, played at Iowa State and her sister, Lindsey, was a Division III national doubles champion at Gustavus Adolphus.
Palen joins a Gopher squad that finished 15-11 overall in the spring of 2008.