May 9, 2005
ATLANTA – Head coach Bryan Shelton, assistant coach Nannie de Villiers and ACC Rookie of the Year Kristi Miller were named ITA Regional Award Winners, as announced by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association Monday afternoon. The three Yellow Jackets are now eligible for the national awards, which will be presented May 22nd in Athens, Ga.
Shelton, the 2005 ACC Coach of the Year, earned the Wilson/ITA Coach of the Year award for the South Region after guiding the Yellow Jackets to a 19-3 record this season, including the first ACC Championship in Georgia Tech tennis history. de Villiers, the South Region ITA Assistant Coach of the Year, earned the honor in just her second season under Shelton, and has been a vital part of the program’s success over the past two seasons.
“I think that Nannie has given us a little bit of an edge on the court with her ability to keep things fresh while also giving the girls a little kick when they need that as well,” said Shelton. “She has given us a spark whenever we’ve needed it this season and I think she is well deserving of the award because she has been such an asset to this program.”
“I think that the coaching awards that we have both received have come because of how well the team has done this season. We can credit our entire team for these two awards.”
Miller, the 2005 ACC Rookie of the Year and one of three Yellow Jackets to earn all-ACC honors, was named the ITA Rookie Player of the Year for the South Region after leading Tech to its first ACC Championship, playing in the No. 1 singles and doubles position. The freshman from Marysville, Mich. has recorded a Tech-record 38 singles victories this season, and currently stands tied with her doubles partner, Alison Silverio, for most doubles wins in a season, with 26 in 2005
“Kristi is going to need a new trophy case after this season,” joked Shelton. “Seriously, she keeps on going and has gotten stronger as the season has progressed, so it is nice that everyone is recognizing her good play and effort throughout the season.”
The Yellow Jackets will begin NCAA Tournament play this weekend when they host the first and second rounds at the Bill Moore Tennis Center. The Yellow Jackets will play the Winthrop Eagles at 2 p.m. Friday in the first round, and should they win, they would face the winner of the Mississippi State-Pepperdine match at 11 a.m. Saturday.