Green Bay Earns Top Honors at Horizon League Tennis Awards Banquet
ANN ARBOR, Mich. (GreenBayPhoenix.com) – Green Bay junior Michael Tenzer (Neuried, Germany) and head coach Mark Thomas took home top honors at the Horizon League Tennis Awards Banquet on Thursday evening at Weber’s Restaurant and Boutique Hotel in Ann Arbor, as Tenzer was selected as the Horizon League Player of the Year for the second year in a row Thomas also repeated as Coach of the Year.
In addition, sophomores Leopold Gomez Islinger (Weiden, Germany) and Howard Scott (Exeter, England) joined Tenzer as members of the All-Horizon League First Team. The awards were voted on by the league’s coaches.
Tenzer, Gomez Islinger and Scott each posted perfect 6-0 records in Horizon League play this season at the top three singles spots, leading Green Bay to an undefeated conference record (16-7 overall) and the No. 1 seed in this weekend’s 2014 Horizon League Championship. It marks the first time in school history that the Phoenix has landed three players on the six-member first team, and it is the third straight season that Green Bay has had at least two first-team honorees.
“Tonight was a nice way to reflect on the success that we’ve had during the season,” Thomas said. “These awards speak volumes about how far the program has come. Winning the regular season was our first goal, and those three guys really led us this year and helped us accomplish that goal by pulling out several tough matches. It’s nice to congratulate them on their accomplishments tonight, and then we’ll move on and get focused on our first Horizon League tournament match on Saturday.”
Tenzer becomes just the third player in league history to win back-to-back Player of the Year awards, and is the first from Green Bay to do so. The only other Green Bay player to receive the honor was Tim Prudlow in 2006.
Tenzer went 16-4 in singles play during the regular season, including a 10-4 mark at No. 1 and a 6-0 record against league opponents. He was twice recognized as Horizon League Player of the Week, and also teamed up with Scott to form one of the league’s top doubles teams. The duo accumulated a 14-6 overall record – going undefeated in conference play – and was ranked as the No. 40 doubles pair in the country after beating the No. 8 tandem from Drake.
“It’s been a great year for Tenzer,” Thomas said. “Going undefeated in the conference in both singles and doubles and achieving a national doubles ranking was extremely impressive, and it was great to see him bounce back after being injured in the fall. He is one of the best players that I’ve seen in this league, and we are very happy that he’s wearing a Green Bay uniform.”
Thomas earns Coach of the Year honors for the second consecutive season and the third time (2011) in his six years at Green Bay. The Phoenix posted an undefeated conference record for the second year in a row, and the team’s 16 wins are tied for the second-most in a season in school history (19-7 in 2012).
“I have to give credit to our guys and my assistant coach Bryan Vescio for the Coach of the Year award,” Thomas said. “There are a lot of people involved in the Green Bay men’s tennis program, and I’m very fortunate to be surrounded by great people who help us succeed both on and off the court.”
Gomez Islinger owns an astonishing 19-2 singles record in 2014, playing the majority of the year at the No. 2 spot (13-1). He ended the regular season with eight straight victories, and has won nine of his last 10 contests. Gomez Islinger was also honored as Horizon League Player of the Week on Feb. 17.
Scott also finished the regular season strong, winning eight of his last 10 singles matches, including seven in a row. The sophomore is 13-8 on the year and 8-2 at the No. 3 spot. Scott also teamed up with Tenzer for a 14-6 doubles record and helped garner a national ranking.
Top-seeded Green Bay will have a first-round bye in the weekend’s Horizon League Championship, which will take place at the University of Michigan Tennis Center. The Phoenix will play the winner of No. 4 Valparaiso and No. 5 UIC on Saturday at 2 p.m. CT.
Green Bay finished runner-up at last year’s championship after earning the program’s first Horizon League tournament title and first NCAA berth during the 2012 season.2014 Horizon League Men’s Tennis Awards
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