July 11, 2014
SKILLMAN, N.J. -- Five Vols were named ITA Scholar Athletes, the college tennis governing body announced this week.
Seniors Jarryd Chaplin and Colton Norton, juniors Hunter Reese and Brandon Fickey and freshman Sunay Bhat worked their way to the national list by posting grade point averages above 3.50 for the school year.
Norton wrapped up his degree in biochemistry and cellular and molecular biology in May, along the way earning ITA Scholar Athlete honors all four years of his career. Chaplin, a logistics major, finished as the three-time ITA Scholar Athlete.
Reese put together another outstanding year on the courts and in the classroom. In addition to winning the NCAA doubles title and being named the ITA Doubles Team of the Year with Mikelis Libietis, Reese also earned his third ITA Scholar Athlete honor.
Several Vols are hitting the competition courts in the coming days. Reese is scheduled to play qualifying this weekend at the ITF Futures event in Tulsa, Okla., and Bhat is competing at the ITA Summer Circuit event on MTSU's campus beginning Saturday. Chaplin will start on the pro circuit trail this weekend at the $50,000 Challenger in Granby, Canada.
On the pro circuit, 2011 SEC Athlete of the Year John-Patrick Smith has been gaining ground in the rankings the last few months.
Smith is now a career-best No. 177 in the ATP singles rankings and is still in the top 100 in doubles at No. 83. He has reached his first career tour-level doubles semifinal this week with former Texas A&M standout Austin Krajicek.