NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – Dayton’s Jordan Benjamin was named the Atlantic 10 Conference Men’s Tennis Player of the Week while teammate Jade Kawamoto was named the Women’s Player of the Week. Also honored was Davidson’s Axel Fries, who was named the Men’s Rookie of the Week and George Washington’s Melis Bayraktaroglu who was named the Women’s Rookie of the Week. The awards were based off performances from Feb. 13-19.
Benjamin put together a 4-0 week against Atlantic 10 opponents Saint Louis and Duquesne. The sophomore from Fairport, N.Y., won 6-4, 7-6 at No. 1 singles against Saint Louis, and followed that up with a 6-3, 6-3 victory at No. 1 against Duquesne. To add to the week's success, Benjamin teamed up with fellow sophomore Lorenzo Rollhauser to go 2-0 at No. 2 doubles. The duo took down Saint Louis 6-3 to open the weekend and then defeated Duquesne 6-4.
Kawamoto continued her great season over the weekend, going 2-0 in both singles and doubles in the opening weekend of conference play for the Flyers. The Greenwood, Ind. native was victorious at No. 4 singles against Saint Louis, 7-6, 6-1, and then again against Duquesne 6-2, 6-1. The junior teamed with Mandy Marchant to defeat both Saint Louis and Duquesne at No. 2 doubles by a score of 6-4.
Fries continued his impressive freshman season by winning his team-leading eighth straight singles match and added a doubles victory in Davidson's match vs. Presbyterian. The Stockholm, Sweden native, teamed with J.B. Gough to secure the doubles point by win a 7-4 tie-breaker decision at No. 1. Fries then nailed down an 11-9 super tie-breaker win to determine his match at No. 5 singles, splitting his first two set by the counts of 4-6 and 6-3. Fries is now a team-best 9-1 on the season, with seven of those wins coming at No. 5.
Bayraktaroglu posted a stellar week on the court to help the Colonials grab three wins in three days with three singles and two doubles victories. On Friday, the freshman took a straight-set win over her No. 3 singles opponent from Towson. Then on Saturday, the Istanbul, Turkey native began her day with a doubles win at No. 1 before another straight-set win at No. 3 singles. To end the weekend, the rookie helped the Colonials take the doubles point with an efficient win at the top spot before claiming her third solo triumph in three days at No. 3, this time in three sets.