KAPSHAI NAMED BIG SKY MVP WHILE BACA, DELGADO AND MELIUK EARN FIRST TEAM HONORS
OGDEN, Utah - Sacramento State sophomore women's tennis player Tatsiana Kapshai was named the Big Sky Conference MVP, while sophomores Clarisse Baca and Maria Meliuk, and freshman Rebeca Delgado earned first team all-Big Sky honors, as announced by the conference today.
Kapshai becomes the third Hornet woman in the last eight years to earn Big Sky MVP, joining Margarita Karnaukhova (2003-06) and Katrina Zheltova (2007-09), who had won the award the previous seven years. The native of Minsk, Belarus was a perfect 8-0 in Big Sky Conference play, all at the No. 1 singles position, in her first season with the Hornets. Her moment of Big Sky dominance occured on March 30th as she posted a pair of 6-0, 6-0 road victories at Idaho State and Weber State. Kapshai finished the regular season 16-7, which included a 9-3 mark at the No. 1 position, with two of her loses coming to ranked opponents in three sets. This included a three set clash with California's Jana Juricova, ranked No. 2 at the time by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association, where she fell 0-6, 6-4, 4-6. She was also an impressive 19-4 in doubles play, including 8-0 in Big Sky matches. She went 13-2 with her regular partner, Delgado, and the tandem went a perfect 7-0 at No. 1 doubles.
Meliuk earned first team honors for the second straight season. Also a native of Minsk, Belarus, Meliuk went 6-0 in Big Sky play, which included a 3-0 record at the No. 2 position and the same record at the No. 3 singles spot in the Hornets lineup. She finished the regular season 5-2 at the No. 3 singles position. Meliuk was 17-4 in doubles play, which included a 7-0 mark inside of the Big Sky. She constructed a 7-0 record with Baca and a 7-2 mark with senior Aileen Tsan in doubles competition for the spring.
Baca earned first team all-Big Sky honors for the first time in her career, having been named to the second team during her freshman campaign in 2009. A two-time conference player of the week, Baca posted a 6-0 mark in Big Sky competition, and finished the regular season 14-0 at the No. 3 and No. 4 singles positions. The native of Chihuahua, Chihuaha, Mexico is currently riding a 12 match winning streak, which includes a pair of straight set triumphs at the No. 4 position in the Big Sky Tournament. Baca was 16-5 in doubles play, and was also 6-0 in Big Sky action. She did not have a regular partner, having played with four different partners in the spring, but she did post a 7-0 mark with fellow sophomore Meliuk.
In her first season at Sacramento State, Delgado also was pegged to the first team after posting a 16-5 overall record and a 5-1 mark in Big Sky Conference play. For the spring season, Delgado collected a 7-3 mark at the No. 2 position, a 4-0 record at the No. 3 spot in the order, and a 5-2 tally at No. 4 singles. The native of Mazatlan, Sinaloa, Mexico constructed a 14-4 mark in doubles, which included a 13-2 mark with her regular partner Kapshai.
The Hornets will learn where and who they will play in the first round when the NCAA makes its selections on Tuesday, May 4. Selections will be aired live on ESPNews that day between 2:00 and 3:00 p.m. PDT. The first round of the tournament will take place on May 14, with the second round to follow on May 15.