Choo Freshman and Scholar-Athlete of the Year, Zaatini Coach of the Year
MACON, Ga. (April 18, 2013) – Going undefeated in Atlantic Sun play, the ETSU women’s tennis team was guaranteed at least some recognition when the league released its postseason honors and awards on Thursday. The Lady Bucs certainly were not denied.
Freshman Lyn Yee Choo (Kuching, Malaysia) topped the list, being named both Atlantic Sun Freshman of the Year and Scholar-Athlete of the Year. Choo was subsequently put on the All-Atlantic Sun First Team, Freshman Team and Academic All-Conference Team. Director of ETSU Tennis Yaser Zaatini took home another top award, being named the A-Sun Coach of the Year for his first time as head of the women’s program and fourth time overall.
“It’s an honor, but I also have to take the extreme privilege of dividing this award,” said Zaatini, who is in his third season as head coach of the women’s program. “None of the team’s successes can be accomplished without Travis [Sandlant], Ricky [Rojas], Jonathan [Berhane] or Jessica [Giuggioli]. This is a team effort. As being a tenured person, I get a lot of the credit, but there is no doubt that the staff we hired are perfectly capable of doing this and without them none of the success would be possible.”
Two more Lady Bucs joined Choo on the first team with senior Antonia Kolovou (Larisa, Greece) and junior Giulia Andreazza (Balneario Camboriu, Brazil) completing the trio. Freshman Anna Gerbasi (Caracas, Venezuela) joined the party, making the second team and all-freshman team. The pairing of Choo and Gerbasi – ranked No. 63 in the latest ITA National Doubles Poll – earned second team doubles honors, as did Andreazza and junior Sofia Espana (Mexico City).
Keeping with its new-found tradition of honoring student-athletes for achievements both academically and athletically, the Atlantic Sun Academic All-Conference team was unveiled, highlighted by Choo being named Scholar-Athlete of the Year. The redshirt freshman carries a 4.0 GPA in pre-pharmacy through two semesters at ETSU. Andreazza was also named to the list with a 3.98 GPA in business.
Choo’s bundle of postseason awards are well earned, posting a record of 30-7 overall, 17-1 over the spring and 8-0 in Atlantic Sun play. She is a perfect 2-0 in the No. 2 spot and 9-0 at the No. 3, carrying a 15-match winning streak into this weekend’s tournament championship. With two victories, she will tie former Lady Buc Sandie Knight for the most wins in a single season (32-9, 2006).
ETSU’s newest sensation also teams with classmate Anna Gerbasi (Caracas, Venezuela) at No. 1 doubles, where the two hold a 24-8 overall record and perfect 8-0 mark in A-Sun play. Choo and Gerbasi carry a 12-match winning streak into the weekend.
Kolovou’s first team honors come in the midst of a 22-11 campaign, 14-3 dual, 7-1 A-Sun, where she has gone 12-2 in No. 1 singles matches. Kolovou’s lone A-Sun loss came in the regular season finale last weekend, but her dominance has been felt by the rest of the league and many non-conference opponents.
Andreazza garners first team honors for the second year in a row, going 6-1 in conference singles action. Andreazza boasts an 8-1 spring mark in No. 2 matches to go along with another win the No. 3 hole. She and Espana earned the second team doubles honors by teaming to go 5-0 in conference play and 6-1 on the spring season. The pairing has won its last six matches.
Gerbasi’s singles honors result from her undefeated 7-0 A-Sun season, along with a 20-9 overall record and 11-4 spring record. Gerbasi is primarily ETSU’s option on court four, where she went 7-1 in the spring.
Aside from Andreazza, all honors are the first for each of the respective Lady Bucs as Kolovou, Choo, Gerbasi and Espana are all in their first competitive season with ETSU.
The Lady Buccaneers look ahead to the 2013 Atlantic Sun Tournament Championship, beginning Friday from the ETSU Tennis Complex. ETSU is the No. 1 seed and will start play in Saturday’s semifinal round.
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