May 14, 2013
LOS ANGELES - UCLA's Billy Martin was named Pac-12 Coach of the Year and Dennis Novikov was named Pac-12 Player of the Year, as the Conference released its men's tennis awards for the 2013 season on Tuesday.
Martin, who is in his 20th season at the helm of the Bruin program, earned the award after leading UCLA to a 26-1 overall record heading into this week's NCAA Round of 16 in Champaign, Ill. UCLA is the top-seeded team at the tournament and is seeking its first national championship since 2005. The Bruins finished this Pac-12 season with a perfect 7-0 record, claiming both the Pac-12's regular-season and tournament championships. It marks the third time that Martin has been named coach of the year, also winning the award in 1996 and 2012(co).
Novikov, who played the most matches at the No. 1 position for the Bruins this year (14), takes an 18-10 overall singles record into this week's round of 16 showdown against Vanderbilt. He did not lose a match in Pac-12 play this year, earning first-team All-Pac-12 honors. He is currently listed at No. 27 in singles and No. 47 in doubles (w/Marcos Giron) in the ITA rankings. He is the first UCLA player to be named conference player of the year since Benjamin Kohlloeffel in 2007.
Marcos Giron also received some good news on Tuesday, as he was named the ITA's Southwest Region Player to Watch, meaning he is now up for the national award that will be released later this month. Giron is currently listed at No. 25 in singles and No. 47 in doubles (w/Novikov) in the latest ITA rankings. Giron leads the Bruins in singles victories this season, compiling a 31-10 overall record. He also leads the team in wins over ranked opponents with 13.
2013 Pac-12 Conference Honors
Pac-12 Coach of the Year: Billy Martin, UCLA
Pac-12 Player of the Year: Dennis Novikov, UCLA
Pac-12 Doubles Team of the Year: Chris Konigsfeldt/Campbell Johnson, CAL
Pac-12 Freshman/Newcomer of the Year: Campbell Johnson, CAL
The All-Pac-12 teams were released last week. They can be found HERE.