Overall Record: 11-7
CAA Record: 2-1
Final ITA Ranking: #69
Highest 2012 ITA Team Ranking: #38, Feb. 22 (School Record)
Tere-Apisah's Final Singles Ranking: #38
Tere-Apisah's Highest Singles Ranking: #34 (Mar. 14)
2012 ITA All-American: Abigail Tere-Apisah
2012 NCAA Singles Championship Participant: Abigail Tere-Apisah (CAA Automatic Qualifier)
CAA Championship Finish: L, 4-3 in CAA Championship semifinals vs. #43 VCU
CAA Player of the Year: Abigail Tere-Apisah (19-2 Singles Record)
All-CAA First Team Singles: Abigail Tere-Apisah
All-CAA First Team Doubles: Whitney Byrd and Maryna Kozachenko (7-2 Record)
All-CAA Second Team Singles: Whitney Byrd (12-6 Record)
GSU All-Academic Team: Martina Ondrackova
ATLANTA--The Georgia State women's tennis team suffered a heartbreaking end to its 2011-12 team season, but watched one of its own take significant strides towards ensuring Georgia State remains a nationally-recognized name in collegiate women's tennis.
Sophomore Abigail Tere-Apisah capped the GSU women's tennis team's 2011-12 campaign with a Cinderella performance at the 2012 NCAA Women's Singles Championship. The Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, native won two matches vs. ranked opponents to advance to the Round of 16 to become GSU's first All-American in women's tennis history. Tere-Apisah finished the season with a 19-2 singles record, including six wins vs. nationally-ranked opponents, to set a new single-season school record for victories.
GSU soared to new heights in 2011-12 by achieving its highest ITA ranking in school history of No. 38 on Feb. 22. The season ended with a narrow 4-3 loss in the CAA Championship match, the third time in the last four years the team has reached the finals. GSU defeated three nationally-ranked opponents on the way to earning an 11-7 record.
The Colonial Athletic Association recognized several GSU players for their success last season. Tere-Apisah earned the CAA Player of the Year, Most Outstanding Performer at the CAA Championship and All-CAA First Team Singles honors. Other first team honorees were junior Whitney Byrd and sophomore Maryna Kozachenko, who were All-CAA First Team Doubles selections. Byrd also took home All-CAA Second Team Singles honors.
Byrd, along with freshmen Masa Grgan and Chaimaa Roudami, formed a valuable corps of newcomers that provided much-needed depth this season. Byrd, a former NAIA All-American, sat out the 2010-11 season due to NCAA transfer rules but roared out to a 12-6 singles record and All-CAA laurels in 2011-12. Byrd and Kozachenko, who were paired up midway through the season, posted a 7-2 record while playing in the No. 2 doubles position.
Grgan and Roudami comprised a formidable duo at the bottom of GSU's singles lineup. Grgan posted a 10-6 mark playing in the No. 5 slot while Roudami went 13-5 and was a solid point at the No. 6 position. Kozachenko was another solid point for Georgia State last season after she posted six wins in the No. 4 singles position.
Georgia State returns Byrd, Grgan, Kozachenko, Roudami and Tere-Apisah to its lineup next season but loses two valuable seniors. Tereza Lerova earned six singles wins in her final season at GSU in the No. 2 position. She also formed a strong No. 1 doubles pair with Tere-Apisah on the way to a 6-3 record. Martina Ondrackova, the Most Outstanding Performer during GSU's CAA Championship run in 2009, ended her career by forming one of GSU's strongest doubles pairs this season. Ondrackova teamed with Grgan to amass a 7-6 record in the No. 3 position. Ondrackova finished her career with 21 doubles victories while Lerova won 22 singles matches and went 30-21 across her three seasons at GSU.
Following the successful team season, Tere-Apisah made a successful run of her own in the NCAA Singles Championship. She took down nationally-ranked opponents in the first two rounds before dueling with the No. 1-ranked player in the country. Tere-Apisah became the first GSU tennis player on the men's or women's side to earn All-America honors and the 21st All-America honoree in Georgia State history.
The Panthers, led by head coach Miha Lisac, begin preparations for the 2012-13 season. Three student-athletes will join GSU prior to fall tournaments beginning in August. Visit the women's tennis page on www.GeorgiaStateSports.com to follow all the offseason news.