Big West Announces 2018 Women's Tennis All-Conference Team
2018 Big West Women's Tennis All-Conference Team
For the second straight season, Hawai‘i captured two of the major awards with Petra Melounova being named Big West Player of the Year and Jun Hernandez Big West Coach of the Year. Cal State Fullerton standout Genevieve Zeidan garnered Freshman of the Year accolades as the 2018 Big West Women's Tennis All-Conference Team was announced Wednesday.
Melounova became the seventh individual in Big West history to capture back-to-back Player of the Year hardware. Prior to Melounova, Pacific's Jenifer Widjaja earned the honor in 2010 and 2011. Melounova starred for the Rainbow Wahine with a 14-3 singles dual record at the No. 1 position, including wins in her last eight contests. Her biggest win of the season came on March 25 when she defeated the nation's 10th-ranked singles player, Stanford's Michaela Gordon, 6-2, 6-3. Melounova played a huge role in UH's first Big West Tournament title with a 3-0 record at Indian Wells Tennis Garden, upending three fellow all-conference first team recipients in Lena Pacholski (Long Beach State), Palina Dubavets (UC Santa Barbara) and Genevieve Zeidan (Cal State Fullerton). She went 9-1 against Big West opposition for the season. The native of Havlickuv Brod, Czech Republic achieved a high national ranking of No. 65 in the Oracle/Intercollegiate Tennis Association poll. She will qualify for the NCAA Women's Tennis Singles Championship for the second year in a row as the nation's current No. 80-ranked player.
Zeidan made history as the first Cal State Fullerton recipient of Freshman of the Year honors. The native of Taipei, Taiwan was instrumental in helping the Titans to program firsts – a trip to the Big West Tournament finals and a 20-win season. Zeidan played between No. 1 and No. 2 singles, amassing a 20-6 dual match record, including a perfect 10-0 mark at No. 2. Zeidan won 12 straight matches at one point. She finished 8-3 against Big West opponents, counting regular season and tournament matches, and helped the Titans achieve the No. 3 seed in the conference tournament, which tied a program record. Zeidan also was the only Big West individual to defeat Player of the Year Petra Melounova of Hawai‘i. Zeidan spent time this season ranked among the nation's top 125 in the Oracle/ITA singles poll, reaching a high of No. 97.
One year after guiding Hawai‘i to its first regular season Big West championship, Hernandez took the program to its first Big West tournament title in 2018. The 11th-year mentor – sixth as a member of the Big West – helped the No. 4 seed Rainbow Wahine defeat a gauntlet of tough teams at Indian Wells Tennis Garden to capture the crown. UH, the lowest seed in tournament history since No. 7 Pacific in 2000 to win the title, knocked off No. 5 seed Long Beach State, top seed UC Santa Barbara and No. 3 seed Cal State Fullerton out in the desert. Earning his second straight Coach of the Year honor, Hernandez has UH in its second NCAA Tournament all-time – and first since 2012. Hawai‘i finished 6-2 in Big West play for a three-way tie for second place. The 'Bows enter the NCAA's 13-6 overall and on a seven-match winning streak. During his Big West tenure, Hernandez has coached two Players of the Year – Cindy Nguyen (2015) and Melounova (2017, 2018) and three Freshmen of the Year – Viktoria Malova (2015), Marina Hruba (2016) and Melounova (2017).
The complete listing of the 2018 Big West Women's Tennis All-Conference Team is located at the link above.