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May 1, 2014

Downing's Rookie of the Year tops Marlins' All-ODAC honors

FOREST, Va. -- Virginia Wesleyan College's men's tennis program has produced the Old Dominion Athletic Conference's (ODAC) Rookie of the Year for the second consecutive season.

ODAC coaches have selected Kenny Downing (Washington, D.C./Homeschooled) as the top rookie in the league after an impressive season that has produced a 14-3 record at No. 2 singles and a 14-5 mark with sophomore Graham Wilson (Newport News/Menchville) at No. 1 doubles.  Wilson was the 2013 ODAC Rookie of the Year.

Wilson and Downing have also been named to the All-ODAC first team at their respective flights and picked up second team honors in doubles. Sophomore Tyler Chang (Hvre de Grace, Md./Tome School) and rookie Brendan Kelleher (Baltimore/Towson) also impressed coaches enough to both earn second team honors at No. 5 and No. 6 singles, respectively. The awards are the second in a row for Wilson and Chang.

Downing, who put together a 10-match winning streak during the season, finished 9-1 against ODAC competition. His overall record of 14-3 is the third best in VWC history at the No. 2 flight and the best ever at the flight by a rookie.  The 14-5 doubles mark produced with Wilson is the sixth best in VWC history in the top flight.  It his also the third highest victory total in the flight, trailing only the 20 wins recorded by Eric Caudill and Jeff Zenisek in 2006 andDrew Tomajczyk (Providence Forge/Homeschooled) and Wilson last season.

Wilson followed his impressive rookie campaign with a standout sophomore season, compiling a 14-4 mark at the No. 1 flight. He finished the season on a four-match winning streak and has improved his two-year singles mark to 37-10, matching the seventh-highest win total in VWC history.

Chang ran up an 11-4 singles record at No. 5, marking the second highest victory total in VWC history at that flight. His 12 victories overall included 11 in straight sets.  Chang put together a seven-match winning streak during the season.

Kelleher emerged as another standout rookie for the Marlins, completing his first intercollegiate season with an 11-3 record.  He was the only VWC player to finish the season undefeated against ODAC competition, posting an 8-0 record, all in straight sets.

Virginia Wesleyan enjoyed its winningest season since a 17-2 finish in 2006, closing the 2014 campaign at 15-5.  The recorded including a 10-2 mark against ODAC foes, a runner-up finish in the ODAC championship tournament, and a regional ranking from the Intercollegiate Tennis Association.  The Marlins are currently No. 17 in the Atlantic South region, with two more rankings to be released.

2014 ALL-ODAC MEN'S TENNIS AWARDS
ODAC Player of the Year: Taylor Shamshiri, Jr., Washington and Lee
ODAC Coach of the Year: Charles Gray, Randolph-Macon
ODAC Rookie of the Year:
Kenneth Downing, Fr., Virginia Wesleyan
ODAC/Farm Bureau Insurance Scholar-Athlete: Michael Holt, Jr., Washington and Lee

All-ODAC First Team
#1 Singles: Taylor Shamshiri, Jr., Washington and Lee
#1 Singles: Graham Wilson, So., Virginia Wesleyan
#2 Singles: Kenneth Downing, Fr., Virginia Wesleyan
#2 Singles: Michael Holt, Jr., Washington and Lee
#3 Singles: Christopher Hu, Jr., Washington and Lee
#4 Singles: Jordan Krasner, Fr., Washington and Lee
#5 Singles: Brian Krouskos, So., Washington and Lee
#6 Singles: Sam Borowsky, So., Washington and Lee
#1 Doubles: Michael Baxter, Sr., and Ryan Byrd, Jr., Randolph-Macon
#1 Doubles: Michael Holt, So., and Taylor Shamshiri, Jr., Washington and Lee
#2 Doubles: Brandon Larsen, Jr., and Thomas Rishcoff, Fr., Bridgewater
#3 Doubles: John Kirby, So., and Jordan Krasner, Fr., Washington and Lee

All-ODAC Second Team
#1 Singles: Brandon Larsen, Jr., Bridgewater
#1 Singles: Turner Votipka, Jr., Guilford
#2 Singles: Kyle Hartfield, Fr., Bridgewater
#3 Singles: Christian Lynn, Jr., Bridgewater
#4 Singles: John Adam, So., Randolph-Macon
#5 Singles: Tyler Chang, So., Virginia Wesleyan
#6 Singles: Brendan Kelleher, Fr., Virginia Wesleyan
#1 Doubles: Kenneth Downing, Fr., and Graham Wilson, So., Virginia Wesleyan
#1 Doubles: Erik Meiler, So., and Turner Votipka, Jr., Guilford
#2 Doubles: Sam Borowsky, So., and Christopher Hu, Jr., Washington and Lee
#3 Doubles: Sam Churchill, Sr., and Kyle Hartfield, Fr., Bridgewater

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