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WTENNIS: UGA Collects ITA Regional Awards
Katarina Jokic, Jeff Wallace, Drake Bernstein and the entire University of Georgia women’s tennis team were among the Southeast Region Award winners for 2021, the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) announced Monday.
A six-time All-American, Jokic was named the ITA Southeast Region Senior Player of the Year. She becomes the 12th Bulldog to win this award and first since Lauren Herring in 2015. A native of Novi Grad, Bosnia, Jokic graduated with a degree in risk management. She led the 2021 Bulldogs to a final national ranking of No. 4. Georgia went 23-2, captured the SEC regular season and tournament crowns and advanced to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Championships. A two-time Honda Award finalist, she posted a 27-2 singles record and 15-7 mark in doubles in 2021. She finished the season ranked No. 5 in singles and No. 4 in doubles with Ariana Arseneault. In her career, Jokic went 95-19 in singles and 77-33 in doubles.
For the fifth time in his career, Wallace was tabbed as the Wilson ITA Southeast Regional Coach of the Year. For Bernstein, it marks the fourth time he has been named the ITA Assistant Coach of the Year for the Southeast Region in his 10 seasons with the Bulldogs.
Also, the Georgia team received the ITA Community Service Award for its efforts. Some of the team’s activities included being a part of the Food2Kids Snack Drive, distributing groceries to needy residents as part of mobile pantry drive, helping with the Dawgs for Pups Coat Drive plus volunteering at Special Props, which offers an adaptive tennis program designed for children and adults with intellectual disabilities.
Georgia’s regional winners are now under consideration for the national awards which will be announced by the ITA on Monday, June 21st.
MTennis: Billy Rowe Earns ITA Awards
Georgia men’s tennis graduate Billy Rowe was named the southeast region recipient of the Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s Arthur Ashe Leadership and Sportsmanship Award as well as the Rafael Osuna Sportsmanship Honor, the ITA announced Monday.
Rowe is the fourth Bulldog to earn the prestigious Arthur Ashe Award, joining current Georgia associate head coach Jamie Hunt (2009), Jamie Laschinger (1996) and Walker Duncan (2019). Rowe is Georgia’s first-ever winner of the Rafael Osuna Sportsmanship honor.
“I knew when Billy transferred here we were getting a great player and an outstanding young man,” head coach Manuel Diaz said. “He exceeded my expectations in every way. Billy clinched some of our biggest wins of the year, including the NCAA victory against sixth-ranked North Carolina. When you watch Billy and his teammates celebrate in that moment, it gives you a glimpse into the admiration the guys have for him. He is a leader and will be successful in anything he sets out to accomplish.”
A native of Coronado, Cailf., Rowe was a two-selection to the Southeastern Conference Community Service Team during stops at Vanderbilt and Georgia. He totaled close to 100 career singles wins and finished second on the team with 17 triumphs this past season.
The 2019 ITA All-American transferred to Georgia last spring. He came up big when it mattered most during the 2020-21 campaign, delivering a team-best five match-clinching victories, including against No. 14 NC State, No. 20 Kentucky and No. 6 North Carolina.
Rowe was a seven-time member of the SEC Academic Honor Roll. He owns a bachelor’s degree in economics with a minor in business from Vanderbilt and recently graduated with a Master of Science in business analytics from the University of Georgia.
Billy Rowe Photo Gallery – CLICK HERE
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