Senior Katrina Schwab (Spokane, Wash.) was named Great West Player of the Year for Women's Tennis Sunday, just a short time after leading the Redhawks to a second place finish at the Great West Conference Championships in Harlingen, Texas. Schwab also made First Team All-Great West along with teammate Lindsey Newman (Freeland, Wash.), while Sarah Lucas (Las Vegas, Nev.) was named Second Team All-Great West.
"It's a huge honor and I'm blown away to have received it," said Schwab about the title. "It's something you don't actually think you'll get. I feel blessed and overwhelmed right now."
Schwab was a mainstay at the top of the Redhawks lineup this season, playing 26 of the team's 27 matches at either number one or number two singles. She won nine individual matches over the dual season, none bigger than her 6-3, 6-0 victory over Ghizelene Doballah of Northern Arizona on Senior Day, April 15. "That was my best tennis of my collegiate career," said Schwab of the straight-set victory. "Something clicked while playing; it was like I wasn't going to give her a point."
Seattle U women's tennis head coach Mark Frisby noticed that mentality as well. "Katrina's greatest attribute is that she always finds ways to win, even against people who have played a lot longer than her," he said.
She also played number one and number two doubles the entire year with partner Corinne Wurden (Poulsbo, Wash.). Together they compiled 13-13 record with a couple of 8-1 victories against teams from Weber State and Eastern Washington.
After four years at Seattle U, Schwab has a final record of 54-56 in singles matches and 62-49 in doubles. "She will be an enormous loss to the program," Frisby said. "She has an integrity and competitive drive that I've never seen before."
Joining Schwab on the conference's first team is Newman, a junior transfer from Skagit Valley Community College. Newman has been the most consistent player for the Redhawks, compiling a 21-6 individual record and seeing time in the first three spots in the lineup. Newman compiled two long winning streaks on the year, a seven-match streak from Jan. 28 to Feb. 10, and a 10-match streak that began March 16 and will continue over to next season. She was the only Redhawk to win both her singles matches at the conference championships with a 6-2, 6-2 win over Dana Nazarova of Texas-Pan American and a 6-3, 6-1 victory over Nina Mayevska of New Jersey Institute of Technology.
Rounding out Seattle U's All-Conference honors is Lucas, who was named Second Team All-Great West. Lucas also compiled a winning record on the year, going 16-7 in the fourth, fifth, and sixth singles positions. She also had a seven-match individual winning streak this season, going without a loss from Jan. 28 to Feb. 11. She also ended the year on a five-match winning streak and claimed a victory at the conference championships, a 6-2, 6-1 decision over Blanca G. Izaguirre of UTPA.
The conference also tabbed Carolina Zanotta of NJIT as Newcomer of the Year and Jack Barton of Chicago State as Coach of the Year Sunday. North Dakota's Stephanie Petsis, Chicago State's Rosalina Tejoprayitno, and NJIT's Monika Graff and Ksenia Kuzmenko make up the rest of the all-conference first team. Joining Lucas as Second Team All-Great West are Julian Mannix of CSU Bakersfield, Rosalia Tejoprayitno of Chicago State, Carolina Zanotta of NJIT, and Nazarova and Wanda Beguelin of UTPA.
The Seattle University women's tennis team will leave the Great West for the Western Athletic Conference July 1st, 2012. They will compete in the WAC next year and will be fully eligible for NCAA postseason play.