Nov. 18, 2015
THE FLATS – Georgia Tech women’s tennis head coach Rodney Harmon has announced that Nadia Gizdova, Kenya Jones and Nami Otsuka have all signed National Letters of Intent to join the Yellow Jacket program beginning in the 2016-17 season.
“I am very excited about this year’s class,” Harmon said. “They have been very successful at national and international junior events throughout their tennis careers. Each of the young ladies has also excelled in the classroom which is very important.”
Nadia Gizdova, Columbia, MD.
Nadia Gizdova, a native of Columbia, Md., is ranked as the No. 33 recruit by the Tennis Recruiting Network and was tabbed as a five star recruit. Gizdova is ranked as the No. 2 recruit in the state of Maryland and the No. 6 recruit in the Middle Atlantic. She attends the Junior Tennis Champions Center.
“We are excited to have Nadia join our program,” Harmon said. “She comes from one of the top tennis academies in the US – the Junior Tennis Champions Center in College Park, MD. Nadia has played some great tennis over the past six months reaching the singles final at the ITF Events in San Juan, PR and Austin, TX. She also won the doubles title at the ITF Austin tournament.”
Gizdova has an IMG Tennis RPI of 25 while her strength of schedule was tabbed at 28. In the USTA Standings she is ranked No. 58 while having an ITF Ranking of 728. Gizdova has an overall ranking of 54-26 while going 9-15 against Blue-Chips. She is 16-7 against five star recruits and 20-2 against four star recruits. Throughout her career, Gizdova has competed in multiple tournaments, winning the USTA Regional Tournament Segment in Philadelphia, Pa., in 2012.
She recently advanced to the quarterfinals of the Wichita Falls ITF Tournament. At the end of September, Gizdova recorded five-straight two-set victories at the Austin ITF Tournament to make it to the finals before falling to Ellie Douglas in three-sets. She also finished as the runner up in the Cop Coqui tournament in Cabo Rojo in Puerto Rico.
Kenya Jones, Memphis, Tenn.
Kenya Jones hails from Memphis, Tenn., and is ranked as the No. 14 recruit nationwide by Tennis Recruiting Network. Jones is a Blue Chip recruit and attends White Station High School. Jones is ranked as the No. 1 recruit in the state of Tennessee and the No. 3 recruit in the Southeast Region. Both her IMG Tennis RPI and schedule strength are ranked at No. 7
“Kenya is one of the most talented prospects in the nation,” Harmon said. “She is the #14 ranked recruit on TennisRecruiting.net. Kenya has some tremendous results against a number of the best players in the nation.”
She is ranked No. 26 in the USTA Standings and has a 31-10 overall record. She is 3-8 against fellow Blue Chips and 20-2 against five-star players. Jones kicked off the 2015 year winning the USTA’s Southern Winter Level 1 Championship in both Singles and Doubles. In November of 2014, Jones advanced to the finals of the USTA National Selection Tournament in doubles before falling in the championship match.
Jones’ father, Sonia, played tennis at Jackson State (1987-88) and Rust College (1990-91) and she has an older sister Kayla who is a senior on the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga women’s tennis team.
Nami Otsuka, Norcross, Ga.
Nami Otsuka, a native of nearby Norcross, Ga., is ranked as the No. 34 overall recruit by Tennis Recruiting Network and the No. 1 recruit in Georgia. She checks in at No. 8 in the Southeast Region and is a five-star recruit. Otsuka has a IMG TennisRPI of 20 and her strength of schedule is ranked at No. 30. In the USTA Standings she is No. 91.
“Nami is a local product who is coached by her father and former Georgia Tech men’s coach, Gary Groslimand,” Harmon said. “She had a big win last week against the reigning, US 16 and under singles champion, Abigail Desiatnikov at the ITF Atlanta event. I am so happy to keep our local pipeline open for top talent now that we will be graduating both of our Atlanta natives, Megan Kurey and Kendal Woodard after this season.”
Otsuka has an overall record of 49-21 and is 8-9 against Blue-Chips. She tallied a 15-7 record against five star recruits and is 18-1 against four-stars.
In the beginning of September, Otsuka won the singles title at the USTA Southern Clay Court Level 1A tournament, winning six-straight matches, including picking up a three-set victory against the No. 56 Emma Kurtz in the quarter finals. She also advanced to the doubles final at the same tournament alongside her partner Katherine Muzik, but the tandem fell in the finals and finished as runners-up.
In June, Otsuka advanced to the doubles finals in the Southern Closed BG 18’s Championship but fell in here-sets in the finals. Otsuka attends the Tennis Academy of the South.