Mertens, Hruba Notch Final Tennis Weekly Awards Of 2016
Top notch singles play netted the final 2016 tennis weekly awards for UC Irvine senior Nico Mertens and Hawai‘i freshman Marina Hruba.
Mertens Defeats Nationally Ranked Player
Stepping up at No. 1 singles for UC Irvine, senior Nico Mertens (Hilden, Germany) captured Big West Men’s Tennis Athlete of the Week honors with two solid singles victories.
He battled back from a one-set deficit to dispatch Fresno State’s Nikolas Papic, 4-6, 6-2, 6-2 and help the Anteaters take a 4-3 road victory.
Despite a 4-3 loss at UC Davis in the regular season finale, Mertens did his part to avert the setback, taking down the nation’s No. 108-ranked player in Alec Adamson. Mertens dealt Adamson a 6-2, 6-4 defeat to improve to 10-7 on the year in singles duals. Mertens, typically the No. 2 player on the squad, moved up to No. 1 due to last minute lineup changes.
Others nominated: Bryce McKelvie (UC Davis); Kyle McCann (UC Riverside); Cody Rakela (UC Santa Barbara)
Hruba Improves To 16-1 In Duals Matches
Hawai‘i freshman Marina Hruba (Prague, Czech Republic) earned Big West Women’s Tennis Athlete of the Week honors after winnng her sixth match in a row and helping the Rainbow Warriors defeat UC Davis on the road.
She defeated Aggie No. 2 singles counterpart Kristy Jorgensen, 6-2, 6-1, to improve to 16-1 in dual matches this season. Hruba also teamed with partner Sarah Gealer to knock off Kamila Kecki and Frederique Sleiffer, 6-1, at No. 3 doubles.
Hruba is closing in on having the highest, single-season winning percentage in UH history. She is currently at .950, with the record .935 held by Rose Thomas in 1981.
Others nominated: Mari Taslagyan (CSUN); Jessie Lee (UC Davis); Sarah Gong (UC Irvine)