Wilson ITA Coach of the Year

Francisco Gallardo | Tennessee Wesleyan University

Francisco Gallardo has taken the Tennessee Wesleyan Men’s Tennis program to new heights. In the spring of 2023 under the direction of Gallardo, the team won both the AAC regular season and conference tournament titles. He led the team to their first ever NAIA National final in Mobile, AL by defeating the No. 1 team in the nation in the semifinals and he was named the AAC Coach of the Year. Currently Tennessee Wesleyan has a record of 19-1 and has won both the 2024 AAC regular and 2024 AAC conference tournament titles. Gallardo was named the 2024 AAC Coach of the Year, his sixth time in his career. Gallardo’s teams have been awarded with the ITA Community Service and Outreach Award in previous years. Each year, his teams have performed more than 50 hours of community service and have worked with the city of Athens, Tennessee to grow the sport of tennis in the city by providing free tennis clinics for the community.

ITA Assistant Coach of the Year

Hugo Robuchon | William Carey University

Hugo Robuchon exemplifies excellence as a tennis assistant coach through his dedication, knowledge, and passion for the sport. With his keen eye for technique and strategy, he guides players to reach their full potential on the court. His supportive demeanor fosters a positive learning environment, inspiring confidence and growth in his athletes. Through his commitment to their success, Hugo elevates the team dynamic and instills a love for tennis that extends far beyond the game itself.

ITA Arthur Ashe Leadership & Sportsmanship

Bryce Ware | Kansas Wesleyan University

In his three years at Kansas Wesleyan, Bryce Ware posted a career record of 121 wins and 30 losses. Ware was named KCAC player of the year two times, and is currently ranked in the top 10 in the ITA singles rankings and top 40 in the ITA Doubles rankings. Bryce maintained a 4.0 GPA his entire college career and will be graduating in 3 years with a business administration degree. Ware has been very involved in the community of Salina where he has been a youth group leader, and has also gave out tennis lessons to many kids in the Salina area. In addition, Ware is heavily involved in community service where he has been in charge of a winter coat drive and a canned food drive.

ITA Rookie of the Year

Islam Orynbassar | William Carey University

In his first year on the team, Islam Orynbassar was the SSAC Conference Champion. He was awarded the SSAC Freshman of the Year and SSAC Player of the Year awards. Orynbassar was ranked as high as No. #8 in the nation and had a career high win over No. 2 Aleksa Ciric (GGC) 6-4, 6-2.

ITA Most Improved Player

Hugo Abril | Arizona Christian University

Hugo Abril played No. 1 singles and doubles for the second straight year. In singles last year, Abril posted an 8-8 record and in doubles, a 7-9 record. This year, Abril went an impressive 11-2 in singles and 9-4 in doubles. Abril participated in the Fall ITA Regional tournament for the first time this year, reaching the semifinals in singles and the final in doubles. At the ITA Cup in Georgia, Abril and his partner went 2-1 in doubles for the week with wins over two teams that finished the previous year ranked in the top-15 nationally, and the loss to the eventual ITA Cup champions. At the start of the year, Abril had WTN of 17.4 and by the end of the season, 13.1. In just his second year, Abril was voted team captain unanimously by his teammates and undoubtedly will retain that title going into next year.

ITA Senior Player of the Year

Alex Gurmendi | Georgia Gwinnett College

This year, Alex Gurmendi secured the most wins in program history at Georgia Gwinnett College and currently holds a 13-1 record at the No. 1 singles. Throughout his career, Gurmendi has stayed in the top 8 nationally and has even held the No. 1 ranking nationally. Gurmendi won the ITA Indoor Nationals and Super Bowl in the ITA Fall Championships. Gurmendi has always represented GGC to the highest standards and his sportsmanship is top tier.

ITA Player to Watch

Zinovii Nahirniak | William Woods University

Zinovii Nahirniak went from playing No. 4 singles last year as a freshman to splitting time at the No. 1, 2 and 3 singles spots this year as a sophomore. Alongside his partner, Nahirniak was ranked No. 2 in the country in doubles. Last season, Nahirniak did not post a ranking while this year, he was ranked as high as No. 20.

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