|Three 49ers earn All-Atlantic 10 honors|
NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – The Charlotte women’s tennis placed three of its members on the various All-Atlantic 10 squads as announced by the league office Tuesday morning. Representing the 49ers on the all-league squads were First Team honoree Alexandra Zinn, Second Team choice Natsuko Takayanagi and All-Academic pick Lisa Grosselius.
Zinn captured a First Team nod for the third-straight season after concluding her career this spring. The Trelleborg, Sweden, native registered a 5-9 singles record in dual matches, playing exclusively at the No. 1 slot. She added an 8-3 dual match doubles ledger, including a perfect 6-0 mark at the No. 3 position.
Zinn battled through injuries to capture a three-set decision over her opponent from Wofford March 19 and then capped her home career with convincing fashion, disposing of Furman’s top player April 11 in straight sets and only dropping five games in the straight-set victory.
She concluded her career with 66 doubles wins, placing fourth in the school record books. She paired with freshman Jessica Pérez for the 6-0 mark as the No. 3 pairing, helping the Niners earn the doubles point in 12 of the team’s 18 matches.
Zinn joins Ana Spivakovsky and Andrea Rivera as the only players in program history to garner at least three All-Atlantic 10 accolades in their careers. Zinn and Spivakovsky, a four-time representative, are the only two to be named to the First Team at least three times.
Takayanagi earned her second-straight All-Atlantic 10 honor after an 11-6 dual match campaign, playing all but one of her contests at the No. 2 slot. The Fukui, Japan, product won seven of her last eight decisions, including both matches at the Atlantic 10 Championships, April 18-19. Her straight-set victory over her foe from Rhode Island in the tournament’s opening round clinched the win for the Niners.
She won a pair of three-set contests, knocking off her opponents at USC Upstate in the opener, against Wofford and at Davidson in the regular-season finale. Takayanagi carried a season-best four-match win streak into the home finale, which included set-tiebreaking triumphs in three of nine sets during the span.
In doubles, she won five times during the dual matches, mostly playing at the No. 2 spot with freshman Tyler Baker late in the year. The pair clinched the point for Charlotte in the Atlantic 10 Championship quarterfinal meeting with Richmond. She also posted back-to-back positive decisions with Zinn to open the spring season, also at the No. 2 slot.
Grosselius collected her first All-Atlantic 10 plaudit and the sixth overall Academic Team award in program history, becoming just the fourth player to be tabbed to the squad.
The Mölndal, Sweden, native formed one-half of the 49ers’ most successful doubles pairing, with senior Anna Ekelund. The duo registered a 13-2 dual match ledger, all at the No. 1 position to anchor the top tandem for head coach Michaela Gorman.
Between Feb. 2 and March 19, the twosome was victorious in all eight of its decisions, which included a shutout over its opponents from Campbell and dropping just one game in an in-state match at East Carolina. The tandem also picked up triumphs in its two A-10 Championship contests, despite being pushed to a tiebreaker in the opening round against Rhode Island.
After a slow start to singles play, she rallied for a three-set win against her opponent from Appalachian State. Using the victory for momentum, Grosselius went on to ride a three-match win streak and then concluded with five triumphs in a six-match stretch through the lone regular-season Atlantic 10 contest with Dayton, March 28.
Perhaps her best victory of the campaign came in the regular-season finale at Davidson April 12. With the match tied 3-3, it came down to her contest with the Wildcats’ Stephani Synn. The two traded set wins with respective 7-5 scores heading into the deciding set. Synn built a 5-1 cushion, but not to be outdone, Grosselius rallied to tie it 5-5 and went on to capture a 7-6 thriller, clinching the overall team victory against the cross-county opponent.
Charlotte finished the season with an 11-7 record, reaching double-digit wins for the eighth time in Gorman’s 10 years. The 49ers will graduate five seniors from this year’s squad, including Zinn, but five returners and two newcomers will be part of the program when it returns to the courts in 2013-14 as members once again of Conference USA.
2013 All-Atlantic 10 Teams
Alexandra Zinn, Charlotte
Amy Simidian, Fordham
Leah Pascarella, George Washington
Galina Chernykh, Rhode Island
Melissa Kandinata, Richmond
Casey Robinson, Saint Joseph’s
Stephanie Hollis, Saint Louis
Alicia Doms, Temple
Cindy Chala, VCU
Yukako Noi, VCU
Alex Brinker, Xavier
Katie Pleiman, Xavier
Natsuko Takayanagi, Charlotte
Judy Li, Duquesne
Lana Robins, George Washington
Yuliana Motyl, Massachusetts
Jessica Podlofsky, Massachusetts
Anna Abadias, Richmond
Aurora Davis, Saint Joseph’s
Yana Mavrina, Temple
Olga Barscheuskaya, VCU
Salome Kvitashvili, VCU
Olga Terteac, VCU
Daniella Patton, Xavier
Lisa Grosselius, Charlotte
Karolina Wojciak, Rhode Island
Elizabeth Sims, Richmond
Mia Elmore, Saint Louis
Stephanie Hollis, Saint Louis
Katie Pleiman, Xavier
Most Outstanding Performer: Cindy Chala, VCU
Most Outstanding Rookie Performer: Alex Brinker, Xavier
Coach of the Year: Eric Toth, Xavier