GSU Tennis sweeps Sun Belt Player of the Week awards
ATLANTA--Georgia State swept the men's and women's tennis Sun Belt Player of the Week awards for the second time this season with senior Victor Valente garnering top men's honors and junior Abigail Tere-Apisah taking home the women's award on Wednesday.
Valente earned the award after setting a school record in doubles play with senior Lucas Santa Ana. The duo knocked off the No. 3-ranked tandem in the most recent ITA National Doubles rankings in Georgia Tech's Juan Spir and Vikram Hundal last Thursday. Valente and Santa Ana trailed 6-4 at one point after having their serve broken but broke in the next game and never looked back en route to an 8-6 win. It was the highest-ranked doubles opponent a GSU doubles pair has defeated in school history.
The win improved Santa Ana and Valente to 11-0 in doubles this season and it was their first over a nationally-ranked opponent in their careers. The win was also the first doubles victory for a GSU team over a nationally-ranked opponent since 2009. That year GSU's Nejc Podkrajsek and Martin Shishkov defeated Nebraska's No. 17-ranked Calin Paar and David Bendheim.
Tere-Apisah went 2-0 in singles and doubles matches last week and notched her ninth singles victory, and her fifth against a nationally-ranked singles opponent, of the spring. She defeated Tulane's No. 102-ranked Klara Vyskocilova 6-3, 7-5 last Sunday and Kennesaw State's Virginie Stein 6-4, 7-6 (9-7) on Friday. Her singles victory on Sunday was the 50th of her career.
Tere-Apisah also went 2-0 in doubles play with sophomore Masa Grgan last week. The two first defeated KSU's Alexandra Apostu and Stein 8-4 on Friday before winning an 8-2 match against Tulane's Vyskocilova and Ipek Birol. Tere-Apisah is currently ranked No. 22 in the ITA National Singles rankings and No. 51 with Grgan in the ITA National Doubles rankings.
Both teams are back in action this Saturday. The men's tennis team, led by first-year head coach Joerg Barthel, hosts Louisiana Lafayette for its second Sun Belt Conference contest of the season on Saturday at 3 p.m. The match will take place at the Blackburn Tennis Center. The women's tennis team, led by sixth-year head coach Miha Lisac, takes on Winthrop at 10 a.m. on Saturday in Rock Hill, S.C.
Live stats will be provided for the men's tennis match courtesy of GeorgiaStateSports.com. Visit both team's pages later this week for a preview of their Saturday matches.