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MEAC Announces Tennis All-Conference Honors

Courtesy: MEAC Media Relations
          Release: 04/18/2017
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Courtesy: MEAC Media Relations

Hampton’s Juan Araoz and Kristina Titova were named the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference’s (MEAC) 2017 Men’s and Women’s Tennis Players of the Year, as voted on by the conference’s head coaches and sports information directors.

Araoz was also named the men’s Rookie of the Year, while South Carolina State head coach Hardeep Judge was selected as the men’s Coach of the Year.

Haley Mullins of Hampton was chosen as the women’s Rookie of the Year, while Lady Pirates head coach Rush Cole was named the Coach of the Year.

Araoz earned both honors as the topped the Pirates’ lineup this season at the No. 1 singles position. He finished the regular season 11-2 overall and was undefeated, 4-0, in MEAC Northern Division play. In doubles, he and teammate Matthew Foster-Estwick went 7-5 overall in the No. 1 spot, 2-2 in conference play.

Araoz was named MEAC Rookie of the Week and MEAC Athlete of the Week once each this season.

Judge led the South Carolina State men to a MEAC Southern Division regular-season title this year. He guided his team to an undefeated divisional record, 5-0, and a 7-7 mark overall. The Bulldogs look to defend their championship title under Judge’s leadership.

Joining Araoz on the men’s All-MEAC First Team are South Carolina State’s Jakub Vitek and Vladyslav Yanchenko, Florida A&M’s Walner Espinoza and Courage Okungbowa and North Carolina Central’s Gabriel Cucalon.

Titova finished with a 9-4 singles record at the No. 1 position to lead all singles players in the conference. She also posted a 5-1 mark in MEAC Northern Division play. Titova teamed up with Mariam Mitaishvili for an 8-3 No. 1 doubles record, including a 5-0 mark in MEAC play.

Mullins, a one-time MEAC Rookie of the Week, saw most of her singles action at the No. 4 spot this season. She finished the year with a 5-1 MEAC Northern Division record. At No. 3 doubles, she was a combined 4-5 with partners Mikaela Pierce and Anastasiia Romanova.

Cole earned his first MEAC Coach of the Year award after leading the Lady Pirates to their first Northern Division regular-season title since 2009. In his third season as head coach, he guided Hampton to an undefeated 6-0 mark in the MEAC Northern Division and a 10-4 mark overall.

Titova is accompanied on the women’s All-MEAC First Team by teammate Mariam Mitaishvili, South Carolina State’s Intissar Rassif and Marketa Marcanikova and Bethune-Cookman’s Mina Matsuba and Matea Roki.

The 2017 MEAC Men’s and Women’s Tennis Championships begin with women’s play on Thursday, April 20 at 8:30 a.m., with the men starting at 1:30 p.m. The championship concludes on Saturday with the women’s final beginning at 9 a.m., followed by the men’s title match at 12 p.m.

All matches will be held at the Folkes-Stevens Tennis Center on the campus of Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Va.


2016-17 Men’s and Women’s Tennis
All-MEAC Teams
As voted on by the league’s head coaches and sports information directors


Player of the Year:
Juan Araoz, Hampton
Rookie of the Year: Juan Araoz, Hampton
Coach of the Year: Hardeep Judge, South Carolina State


Name School Class Hometown
Juan Araoz Hampton Fr. Pilar Buenos Aires, Argentina
Jakub Vitek South Carolina State Jr. Czech Republic
Walner Espinoza Florida A&M Sr. Panama City, Panama
Gabriel Cucalon North Carolina Central So. Guayaquil, Ecuador
Vladyslav Yanchenko South Carolina State Jr. Ukraine
Courage Okungbowa Florida A&M Sr. Wesley Chapel, Fla.


Name School Class Hometown
Theofanis Kontopoulos North Carolina Central Fr. Corinthos, Greece
Frederico Nani Florida A&M Fr. Cordoba, Argentina
Alexsander Stupar South Carolina State Sr. Serbia
Jose Plazas Bethune-Cookman So. Bogota, Colombia
Ondrej Labik Morgan State Fr. Czech Republic
Charles Hudson Hampton So. Wellington, New Zealand

Player of the Year:
Kristina Titova, Hampton
Rookie of the Year: Haley Mullins, Hampton
Coach of the Year: Rush Cole, Hampton


Name School Class Hometown
Kristina Titova Hampton So. Novobirsk, Russia
Intissar Rassif South Carolina State Sr. Morocco
Mina Matsuba Bethune-Cookman Sr. Mie, Japan
Matea Roki Bethune-Cookman Jr. Toronto, Canada
Mariam Mitaishvili Hampton Jr. Tbilisi, Georgia
Marketa Marcanikova South Carolina State Sr. Czech Republic


Name School Class Hometown
Cherise Slocombe Hampton So. Barbados
Jessica Josiah Howard Sr. Sacramento, Calif.
Andjela Vasic South Carolina State Sr. Serbia
Dominique Henry Florida A&M Sr. Miami, Fla.
Dajana Cvjetkovic Norfolk State Jr. Bijeljina, Bosnia & Herzegovina
Kayla Price Morgan State Jr. Charlotte, N.C.