April 28, 2011

YPSILANTI, Mich. -- Senior Anastasia Dracheva made Miami Tennis history Thursday night, becoming the school's first four-time all-conference selection. The Moscow, Russia, native joined junior Megan Martzolf was a second-team choice.

First-year head coach Anca Dumitrescu was named the league's Coach of the Year, marking the third straight year that Miami's mentor has won the award. The RedHawks won their third straight regular-season title, finishing 17-5 overall and 8-0 in the MAC.

Joining Dracheva and Danesis on the first team were Player of the Year Zara Harutyunyan (Akron), Freshman of the Year Nina Sujashvili (Western Michigan), Christine Chiricosta (Bowling Green) and Diana Popescu (Buffalo).

Dracheva, on the first team all four of her seasons, holds a 24-7 record this year, including 19-3 and dual matches and 8-0 in league play. Danesis is 22-10 overall with a 17-5 mark during the spring.

In addition to Martzolf, All-MAC second team honors went to Angelika Jogasuria (Akron), Maggie Remynse (Western Michigan), Prang Pantusart (Akron), Miriam Westerink (Eastern Michigan) and Ashley Frey (Toledo).

Bowling Green's Christina Chiricosta and Buffalo's Diana Popescu shared the honor of winning the Leann Grimes Davidge Sportsmanship Award. The award is presented to the player who has displayed outstanding sportsmanship in MAC competition. Chiricosta, a senior from Avon Lake, Ohio, leads the Falcons program all-time in wins and served as No. 1 singles and No. 1 doubles. Popescu also served as No. 1 singles and No. 1 doubles for the Bulls.

Miami begins defense of its 2009 and 2010 MAC Tournament Championships Friday morning at 10 a.m. The top-seeded RedHawks take on No. 8 Ball State at Ypsilanti High School. The Cardinals defeated Northern Illinois 4-0 in Thursday's first-round match.

2011 Women's Tennis All-MAC

Zara Harutyunyan, Akron
Anastasia Dracheva, Miami
Stephanie Danesis, Miami
Christine Chiricosta, Bowling Green
Diana Popescu, Buffalo
Nina Sujashvili, Western Michigan

Angelika Jogasuria, Akron
Megan Martzolf, Miami
Maggie Remynse, Western Michigan
Prang Pantusart, Akron
Miriam Westerink, Eastern Michigan
Ashley Frey, Toledo

COACH OF THE YEAR: Anca Dumitrescu, Miami

FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR: Nini Sujashvili, Western Michigan

PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Zara Harutyunyan, Akron
LEANN GRIMES DAVIDGE SPORTSMANSHIP AWARD: Christine Chiricosta, Bowling Green/Diana Popescu, Buffalo