June 28, 2012
Atlanta – Georgia Tech senior Jillian O’Neill was named the ACC Women’s Tennis Scholar-Athlete of the Year and five Yellow Jackets were selected to the All-ACC Academic women’s tennis team conference commissioner John Swofford announced Thursday.
Joining O’Neill on the All-ACC Academic Team were senior Lynn Blau, junior Elizabeth Kilborn, senior Caroline Lilley and freshman Jasmine Minor. This is Blau’s third selection to the team, while Kilborn and Lilley received the award for the second time. O’Neill and Minor were each selected for the first time.
“At Georgia Tech, we have continuously had a tradition of excellence in the classroom and on the court,” assistant coach Alison Silverio said. “Again this year, our program convincingly delivered a standout performance in the classroom.”
Not only did the Georgia Tech women’s tennis team have five student-athletes receive All-ACC Academic honors, but the team finished with the highest team GPA, 3.71, in school history.
“This is certainly a tribute to our team and the academic staff’s hard work and dedication to continue the standard of excellence at Georgia Tech,” Silverio continued. “Lynn, Elizabeth, Caroline, Jillian and Jasmine are very well deserving of the All-ACC Academic honors. Their efforts and diligence in the classroom are examples of the exceptional student-athletes we have at Georgia Tech.”
O’Neill is the just the second Yellow Jacket to earn ACC Women’s Tennis Scholar-Athlete of the Year, joining Kristi Miller in 2008. O’Neill is a three-time member of the Dean’s list (including the 2012 spring semester) and earned a spot on the ACC Honor Roll, which will be announced later this summer.
In her two years at Georgia Tech, O’Neill won 54 singles matches, earned two bids to the NCAA Singles Championship and was named All-ACC first team both years. This season, O’Neill garnered ITA All-America honors after earning a top 16 seed and finishing the year ranked No. 12 in the Campbell/ITA College Tennis Rankings.
The Montreal, Canada, native led the Yellow Jackets with 30 wins and posted a 17-9 mark playing from the No. 1 position in the Tech lineup. O’Neill tallied 16 wins over ranked opponents and went 8-3 in ACC singles matches. O’Neill earned a trip to the NCAA Doubles Championship with partner Alex Anghelescu. The duo posted a 17-12 record, including 10 wins over ranked opponents, and finished the year ranked No. 23.
“Congratulations to Jillian on receiving the ACC Scholar-Athlete of the Year award,” Silverio said. “She was a stellar example to her teammates and showed a true commitment to success on and off the court this year. We are extremely proud of our program’s academic achievements.”
Blau tied O’Neill for the team lead with 30 singles victories, including an impressive 10-1 mark at No. 6 singles. Kilborn finished her junior campaign with a 25-19 singles record and recorded eight wins over ranked foe, including the clinching win in a comeback win at No. 9 Northwestern. Blau and Kilborn partnered for a 29-13 doubles record and a final ranking of No. 54.
Lilley battled through injuries to post a record of 16-10 record. The Portland, Ore., native graduated with a degree in management in May and finished her collegiate career with a perfect 4.0 GPA. Minor, a freshman from Mundelein, Ill., finished with a 26-10 singles record and went 6-3 in ACC play.
The ACC Scholar-Athlete of the Year awards were established in September, 2007 to be awarded annually to the top junior or senior student-athlete in their respective sports. Candidates for the awards must have maintained a minimum 3.0 grade point average for their career as well as a 3.0 for each of the last two semesters.
Fans are encouraged to follow Georgia Tech women’s tennis on Twitter, @GT_WTEN, and like the Yellow Jackets on Facebook, GTWomensTennis, for an inside look at the program.