FAYETTEVILLE- The University of Arkansas men’s tennis team completed the 2012 season with a winning record and several accolades on and off the courts.
The Razorbacks finished 58th in the country, 25 spots up from last season’s finish. Arkansas was also ranked No. 5 in the Central Region. It was the best start since the 2008 and finished with an overall record of 14-13.Individually, senior Nikolas Zogaj was ranked No. 98 nationally in singles among 3000 Division I competitors. He also ended the season ranked No. 8 in the Central Region. In doubles, the duo of Matt Walters and Hall Fess posted a 20-5 record at the No. 1 spot. They ranked No. 54 nationally and No. 7 in the Central Region.Walters was named SEC Player of the Week after he earned both singles wins and both doubles wins over Iowa and a ranked DePaul team. Walters was also awarded the overall SEC Sportsmanship Award.The Hogs had a huge victory over No. 43 Santa Clara at its home courts. The Razorbacks pulled off the 4-3 upset after dropping the doubles point. The Razorbacks also collected a big 4-3 win over No. 48 Vanderbilt.The team was recognized by the NCAA for outstanding work in the classroom, being ranked in the top 10 percent nationally in its respective sport in multi-year Academic Progress Rate (APR). The APR provides a real-time look at a team’s academic success each semester by tracking the academic progress of each student-athlete on scholarship. Tennis is the first Razorback men’s sport to be recognized for its APR ranking. In 25 seasons, head coach Robert Cox has graduated every student-athlete to complete his athletic eligibility with the Razorbacks, and has guided Arkansas to more than 300 victories. Cox has more than 400 wins for his career, but recorded his 300th at Arkansas with the victory at Santa Clara. He has guided the Razorbacks to 14 seasons with 12 or more wins and is responsible for almost 40 percent of the wins in program history. While Arkansas will be losing three senior from the 2012 squad, it has a talented bunch of recruits coming in for the 2012-2013 season.Santiago Munoz, Jacob Herndon and Austin Robles will join the Razorback’s team come this fall. Munoz, a native of Mexico City, is currently ranked No. 161 in ITF juniors. He is also ranked No. 4 in Mexico.
Herndon resides in Gilmer, Texas, where he is ranked No. 9 while also being in the top 140 in the country in his age division. Robles comes to Fayetteville from Naples, Fla., where he currently ranks in the top 40 in the state. He also just led his high school team to the Florida State Championship.