ELON, N.C. – The Elon University men’s tennis team will complete its brief two-match road trip tomorrow afternoon, March 25, in Statesboro, Ga. with a 2:30 p.m. match against the Georgia Southern Eagles.
ELON vs. GEORGIA SOUTHERN: Entering the 13th match of the series between Elon and Georgia Southern, the Phoenix holds an 8-4 record over the Eagles. Each of the eight wins came from 2006 to 2012, including a SoCon Tournament victory in 2008. But last season, Georgia Southern edged the Phoenix at the Jimmy Powell Tennis Center by a score of 4-3.
LOOKING BACK: Elon moved to 4-0 in the Southern Conference yesterday, March 23, on the road in Charleston, S.C. against The Citadel with a 7-0 sweep of the Bulldogs. No Elon player dropped more than five games in the match while Stefan Fortmann picked up his sixth straight singles win with a victory on court No. 2. The 7-0 score marks the third time in four SoCon matches Elon has swept its opponent. The only team the Phoenix did not sweep was Davidson on March 9. The Phoenix topped the Wildcats 6-1 at the Jimmy Powell Tennis Center.
PHOENIX IN THE POLLS: In the latest Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) national polls released March 18, the Phoenix checked in at No. 39 while Silverman individually sits at No. 38. The mark is a program-best, which tops the previous best set earlier this season when the Phoenix checked in at No. 40 in the country. Since the start of the season, Elon has jumped 25 spots in the national rankings from its initial spot of No. 64.
SOCON PLAYERS OF THE WEEK: This season, the Southern Conference has honored five players with the league’s Player of the Week award. Four of those awards have gone to Elon players—Silverman, Kaufman and Fortmann. Silverman was the first player to win the award this year on Feb. 18. The senior has picked up wins this season against Duke’s Jason Tahir, who was ranked No. 52 in the nation individually while Duke was No. 7, in Elon’s upset of the Blue Devils on Jan. 17 and Samford’s Elliot Barnwell on two separate occasions. Kaufman went a combined 4-0 in singles and doubles throughout the two matches against Brown and Chattanooga that led to the honor on March 4. Fortmann was named the Player of the Week March 11 after breezing through singles matches against Samford and Davidson, winning each match by a score of 6-2, 6-2. He followed that up with the award a week later with winning the award again after going 3-0 for all matches played March 10-16.
KOWALSKI HONORED: Junior Brian Kowalski became the third Elon athlete throughout the 2013-2014 academic year to be named the Southern Conference Student-Athlete of the Week on Jan. 22. The honor came after Kowalski won the decisive match against No. 7 Duke, one that gave Elon the upset of the Blue Devils on Jan. 17. Nathan Dean of the men’s soccer team, Sam Coffer of the women’s basketball team andFrida Jansaker of the women’s tennis team are the other three Elon athletes to earn the award.
FRIENDS OF JACLYN: On March 9, both the men’s and women’s tennis teams held Friends of Jaclyn Day at the Jimmy Powell Tennis Center to raise awareness for pediatric brain tumors. A week later, a very special guest named Jake Ingham joined the Phoenix family when the 12-year old signed a contract with the teams. Ingham is expected to return to Elon later this season for some of the teams’ remaining home matches.
LOOKING AHEAD: The Phoenix will come home on Wednesday, April 2, for a match against the UNC Greensboro Spartans. The match at the Jimmy Powell Tennis Center is set for 3 p.m. The Spartans dropped their first SoCon match of the season Saturday, March 22, on the road against Furman in Greenville, S.C.