Cigui earns national honor -, GA News Weather & Sports

Cigui earns national honor

Columbus State's Paola Cigui was named the Intercollegiate Tennis Association's National Senior of the Year on Tuesday evening at the annual ITA award banquet at the NCAA Championship in Altamonte Springs, Fla. 

Cigui becomes just the second player in CSU history to win one of the most sought after awards in collegiate tennis. Columbus State Hall of Famer and three-time All-American, Diana Gherghi, also won the award in 2006. 

"This is a tremendous award for Paola and the Columbus State tennis program," said head coach Evan Isaacs. "Paola deserves this honor after all of her hard work and effort that she has put in during her career." 

Cigui has been the catalyst of the Columbus State women's tennis program for the past three seasons. During that time, the Lady Cougars are 71-11 including reaching the NCAA Tournament Round of 16 in each of the three years. In 2012, CSU went to the NCAA Tournament Quarterfinals for just the second time in school history. 

In singles play, Cigui has two All-American accolades as she racked up 64 wins in 67 matches. She ascended to the number one spot in the nation in the ITA poll becoming the first ever CSU player to achieve that honor. 

Cigui was named to the All-Peach Belt Conference first team in all three years while also being named the PBC Player of the Year twice. 

As a doubles player, Cigui also found success earning All-American status with two different partners. With those two partners, Cigui was 35-6. 

This year, Cigui is having another banner season posting a 19-3 singles mark. She is currently ranked third in the nation in the latest ITA poll. In doubles play, Cigui is 22-3 including a 20-3 record with Beatriz Leon. The duo is also ranked 10th in the nation. 

Columbus State will begin play in the NCAA Tournament Round of 16 on Wednesday at 10:30 a.m. against 46th-ranked Lewis. CSU defeated Lewis in the 2012 NCAA Tournament

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