Stafford OVC Freshman of the Year, four earn all-OVC tennis honors

Stafford OVC Freshman of the Year, four earn all-OVC tennis honors

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. -- The Tennessee Tech men’s and women’s tennis were both represented on Ohio Valley Conference all-conference teams which were released by the conference office on Thursday.

Nick Stafford of the men’s squad was named the OVC Freshman of the Year in addition to garnering All-OVC second-team honors. Alex Chen and Josh Girling were both named first-team all-OVC as the Golden Eagles were one of just two teams to have multiple players appear on the top honor squad.

On the women’s side, Leydi Zora picked up All-OVC second-team honors in her first season as a Golden Eagle.

Stafford finished his freshman campaign with a 17-6 record overall, combining his fall and spring season records. Stafford had an impressive fall as he compiled a team-best 7-2 record during the team’s tournament schedule. This spring, Stafford has gone 10-4 in dual meet matches including a 5-2 mark in conference action.

A native of Melbourne, Australia, Stafford played primarily at the No. 3 singles position while teaming with Girling at No. 1 doubles. Girling and Stafford went 5-1 in doubles during OVC play, the best mark on the team.

Girling earns his first career all-conference recognition after being the only Golden Eagle to post a perfect 7-0 record in OVC singles action. Girling, a junior from Winchester, England, compiled a 15-9 record between the fall and spring seasons and finished the dual meet season strong, winning his last six matches.

Chen also earned the first all-conference honor of his career as he played atop the TTU lineup nearly the entire season. A sophomore from Samarkand, Uzbekistan, Chen had a 9-3 dual meet record at No. 1 singles and a 15-9 overall record between the fall and spring seasons. In doubles action, Chen teamed with Lloyd Harris for much of the dual meet season as the tandem finished 3-2 at the No. 2 position.

Zora was the lone women’s player to earn all-conference honors after she went 4-5 at the No. 1 singles position during conference play for the Golden Eagles. A junior transfer from Arkansas State in her first season at Tech, Zora went 7-13 overall in singles action and finished her season on a high note with a straight-sets win in her final match. A Floridabianca, Colombia, native, Zora also went 4-8 in dual meet doubles matches, including a 3-5 mark during OVC play.

Zora and the TTU women finished their 2010 season with a 3-12 overall record and 2-7 mark in the conference.

Women's 1st Team All-Conference
-Vanja Tomic, APSU
-Carolin Weikard, APSU
-Martina Dessbesell, JSU
-Viviane Marani, JSU
-Martie Wahl, UTM
-Anna Winkelmann, UTM

2nd Team All-Conference
-Michelle Liew, APSU
-Mariana Pagan, APSU
-Myriem Mhirit, EKU
-Madeleinne Antero, MOR
-Ashley Canty, MUR
-Nikole Novikova, SEMO
-Leydi Zora, TTU

Women's Player of the Year - Vanja Tomic, APSU
Women's Freshman of the Year - Carolin Weikard, APSU
Women's Co-Coach of the Year - Malik Tabet, APSU and Steve Bailey, JSU

Men's 1st Team All-Conference
-Henrique Norbiato, APSU
-Jeff Rutherford, EIU
-Alex Das, EKU
-Hugo Klientovsky, EKU
-Nik Schroeder, EKU
-Axel Sunberg, JSU
-Alex Chen, TTU
-Josh Girling, TTU

2nd Team All-Conference
-Sean Bailey, APSU
-Carles Pons, EKU
-Brian Kenyon, JSU
-Nenad Marcec, JSU
-Nathan Martin, MOR
-Renaldo Domoney, MUR
-Nick Stafford, TTU

Men's Player of the Year - Alex Das, EKU
Men's Freshman of the Year - Nick Stafford, TTU
Men's Coach of the Year - Rob Oertel, EKU