Women’s Tennis Lands Five on All-Conference Teams

May 15, 2018

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – Five George Washington women’s tennis student-athletes have received Atlantic 10 postseason honors, the league announced on Tuesday. Junior Maria Siopacha was named Co-Most Outstanding Performer and also earned a spot on the First Team and All-Academic Team. Melis Bayraktaroglu, Marie-Louise Decamps, Sara Grubac and Julia Herlogsson all received Second Team nods. Decamps was also recognized for the third straight year on the All-Academic Team.

The Colonials’ eight postseason honors ranks first in the conference and matches the program-record eight awards received at the conclusion of the 1994 season.

“Words can't express how proud I am of this team,” said head coach Torrie Browning. “Their work ethic and dedication is unparalleled. All of this would not be possible without the tireless work and dedication of our assistant coach, Petra Ferancova, and our strength coach, Colin Kidwell. These recognitions and awards are a true reflection of the girls putting in the work day in and day out.”

Siopacha garners a trio of All-Conference honors after a standout season, in which she tallied an 19-9 record playing exclusively at the No. 1 position. The Limassol, Cyprus, native finished the spring season on an eight-match win streak, including a 4-0 mark against conference opponents, and paced the team with a 19-11 doubles record. The business economics and public policy major also helped lead the squad to a program-best 6-1 A-10 record while boasting a 3.71 GPA in the classroom. Earlier in the year, she also defeated William & Mary’s Rosie Cheng, who at the time was ranked #86 in the ITA rankings. Siopacha is GW’s second-ever Most Outstanding Performer, joining Helen Andrews, who earned the honor in 1997.

“For Maria to be named Co-Most Outstanding Player, First Team All Conference and make the All Academic Team goes to prove she is one of the best tennis student-athletes in the conference,” said Browning. “She has improved so much, and it's truly been amazing to see her progress. More importantly, she has shown she knows how to balance being a high-level student as well as a high-level athlete.”

Decamps earns her third career All-Academic nod and first Second Team recognition after tallying a team-best 19-13 singles record, including a perfect 7-0 mark against A-10 opponents. The Sao Paolo, Brazil, native won the singles consolation Leadership Flight Title at the Hokie Invite in the fall and went on to go 14-8 in dual-match singles play in the spring, closing her career on a seven-match win-streak. Off the court, the economics major owns a 3.98 GPA and was recognized by the Athletics Department as the Female Senior Academic Award winner.

“This is Marie's first all-conference recognition which is long overdue,” said Browning. “ Also, it is not surprising that she made the All Academic Team again. She has shown once again that she truly is the definition of what it means to be a student-athlete. For her to be recognized for her athletic and academic performance in her senior year is a great way to cap off her career here at GW.”

Herlogsson tallied a stellar freshman campaign with an 18-11 overall singles record and 13-6 mark in spring play at the Nos. 3, 4, and 5 positions. The pre-business administration major opened the spring season on a five-match win streak and went on to finish the season with an 8-1 record playing at No. 4.

Grubac earns her second career Second Team honor after posting an 11-10 singles record, including a 5-2 mark against conference opponents. The Belgrade, Serbia, native defeated Harvard’s then-ranked Neha Gupta to clinch GW’s 4-3 victory over the Crimson in the Colonials’ spring season opener. Grubac was then recognized as the A-10 Player of the Week on January 24.

Bayraktaroglu lands on the Second Team after tallying an 11-10 overall singles record playing at the top three positions. The sophomore also posted a 5-3 record in A-10 action and helped the squad to the semifinal round at the A-10 Championship with her 6-0, 6-0 win over Dayton. In doubles play, the Istanbul, Turkey, native ranked third on the team with a 13-9 mark and captured the most doubles victories over A-10 opponents (5-3).

“For Melis and Sara, this is their second all-conference recognition and just goes to show how consistent and solid they have been,” said Browning. “They both still have a tremendous upside and will only get better. Last but not least, for Julia as a freshman to get her first all-conference recognition is a tremendous accomplishment. She will only continue to get better.”



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