Stanford’s Kumar, Utah's Chisholm named Pac-12 Tennis Scholar-Athletes of the Year

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SAN FRANCISCO – STANFORD’s Sameer Kumar was named the Pac-12 Men's Tennis Scholar-Athlete of the Year and Brianna Chisholm of UTAH was tabbed the Pac-12 Women's Tennis Scholar-Athlete of the Year for the 2019 season, the Conference office announced today. The award, which is presented in each of the 24 sports the Pac-12 sponsors, was established to honor collegiate student-athletes who are standouts both academically and in their sports discipline.

Kumar, a native of Carmel, Ind., is an economics major carrying a 3.92 grade-point average at The Farm. The Cardinal’s two-year team captain is a two-time first team Pac-12 All-Academic selection and two-time ITA Scholar-Athlete. He volunteers as a student mentor at East Palo Alto Tennis & Tutoring (EPATT), a non-profit youth development organization that provides academic tutoring and tennis coaching to underprivileged kids in the area. He has volunteered with EPATT for all four years at Stanford and organized a weekly schedule of volunteer hours for the Stanford men's tennis team. Kumar has also been one of Stanford’s key players on the court, as he has been nationally-ranked in singles each of the last two seasons and is currently ranked No. 114. He holds a 10-2 singles record this season and a combined 11-5 doubles record with two different doubles partners. He owns more than 70 career singles victories and has played in the top four in Stanford’s dual lineup the last two years. He has been a part of Stanford’s top-two doubles teams in 2018 and 2019, and finished his junior campaign ranked 63rd in the nation in doubles. Kumar has proven his ability on the postseason stage as well, providing two clinching points in the NCAA Tournament. He is the third Cardinal to be honored as the men’s tennis scholar-athlete of the year all-time.

Chisholm, a native of Kaysville, Utah, is a human development and family studies major with a 3.97 grade-point average. She is a two-time first team Pac-12 All-Academic selection and two-time ITA Scholar-Athlete. She has been a part of the Dean’s List and Athletic Director’s honor roll every semester she has been enrolled at Utah. Even more impressive than her academic accomplishments may be her commitment to community service. In 2018, she was named the ITA Mountain Region Arthur Ashe Leadership & Sportsmanship Award winner for exhibiting outstanding sportsmanship and leadership as well as scholastic, extracurricular and tennis achievement. The entire Utes team earned the ITA Mountain Region Community Service Award as a part of “Team Impact”, as the team recruited a 14-year-old who has cystic fibrosis to be a part of team practices, matches and team dinners this past season. Chisholm, who was the team representative for Team Impact, also volunteered as a reader for adult and children refugees from around the world. During the holidays, she helped shop and deliver presents to children in need, as well as doing yard work for the elderly and sick in her neighborhood with her church group. On the court, she competes at the top spot in both singles and doubles. She has defeated a pair of ranked singles opponents and three nationally-ranked doubles opponents while accumulating a 9-9 singles record and 9-5 doubles record on the year. She is the first Ute to be honored as the women’s tennis scholar-athlete of the year.

In order to be eligible for the Pac-12 Scholar-Athlete of the Year award, student-athletes must be a senior (in athletics eligibility) on track to receive a degree, have a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher, participate in at least 50 percent of the scheduled contests in the sport and have a minimum one year in residence at the institution. Each Pac-12 institution may nominate one individual per sport, and the winners are selected by a committee of Pac-12 staff members at the conclusion of each sport’s regular season. The athletics accomplishments of the nominees are a consideration in voting for the award.

A Scholar-Athlete of the Year will be named in each of the Pac-12’s 24 sponsored sports: baseball, men’s basketball, women’s basketball, beach volleyball, men’s cross country, women’s cross country, football, men’s golf, women’s golf, women’s gymnastics, women’s lacrosse, men’s rowing, women’s rowing, men’s soccer, women’s soccer, softball, men’s swimming & diving, women’s swimming & diving, men’s tennis, women’s tennis, men’s track & field, women’s track & field, women’s volleyball, and wrestling. The award was first established during the 2007-08 academic year.

Kumar, Chisholm and the rest of the Pac-12 will all be competing this week at the 2019 Pac-12 Men’s and Women’s Tennis Championship in Ojai, Calif. The Pac-12 Men’s Championship will be held at Libbey Park and the Pac-12 women will play the first two rounds plus the semifinals at the Weil Tennis Academy, with the championship match held at Libbey Park. The men's quarterfinals will be broadcast live beginning at 9 a.m. PT on Thursday, April 25 on Pac-12 Bay Area. Pac-12 Network and Pac-12 Bay Area will televise the men's semifinals on Friday, April 26 beginning at 1 p.m. PT. The men's finals will air live on Pac-12 Network and Pac-12 Bay Area beginning at 3 p.m. on Saturday, April 27, and the women's finals will be broadcast live on Saturday as well on Pac-12 Bay Area beginning at 12 p.m. PT. Full Championship details are available at pac-12.com/tennis/championships.

ALSO NOMINATED MEN: Jonas Maier, ARIZONA; Thomas Laurent, OREGON; Maxime Cressy, UCLA; Tanner Smith, USC; Dan Little, UTAH; Piers Foley, WASHINGTON.

ALSO NOMINATED WOMEN: Camila Wesbrooks, ARIZONA; Olivia Hauger, CALIFORNIA; Annabelle Andrinopoulos, COLORADO; Daniela Nasser, OREGON; Caroline Lampl, Stanford

PREVIOUS MEN’S AND WOMEN’S TENNIS SCHOLAR-ATHLETES OF THE YEAR

Year Men’s Women’s
2018-19 Sameer Kumar, Stanford Brianna Chisholm, Utah
2017-18 Martin Redlicki, UCLA Gabby Smith, USC
2016-17 Gal Hakak, Washington Caroline Doyle, Stanford
2015-16 Max de Vroome, USC Krista Hardebeck, Stanford
2014-15 Dennis Mkrtchian, UCLA Kaitlin Ray, UCLA
2013-14 Clay Thompson, UCLA Lacey Smyth, Arizona
2012-13 Denis Lin, Stanford Jacqueline Cako, Arizona State
2011-12 Ryan Thacher, Stanford Jana Juricova, California
2010-11 Jake Poldma, USC Venise Chan, Washington
2009-10 Robert Farah, USC Lindsay Burdette, Stanford
2008-09 Michael Look, UCLA Danielle Steinberg, Arizona
2007-08 Mathieu Dehaine, UCLA Riza Zalameda, UCLA
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