From staff reports
Lynchburg senior Christina Harris, already well-decorated in her college tennis career, added an accolade to her list Thursday, earning an all-state player of the year award from the Virginia Sports Information Directors.
Harris earned recognition from the organization in the college division and is the first in program history to pick up the honor. A handful of other Lynchburg athletes, and others from area schools, also were honored as part of the annual college division or university division teams.
Harris was named to the all-state first team for both singles and doubles. Teammate Caroline Guill made up the other part of that doubles tandem. Lyncburg’s Elizabeth Teefey landed a second-team spot for singles, and six other players from Randolph and Sweet Briar earned all-state honors in the college division.
Harris, a four-time all-state honoree, closed out her senior season with a 6-0 singles record in dual-match play this spring before the coronavirus pandemic ended the season. She and Guill went 7-1 this year in doubles play.
A year ago, Harris was Lynchburg’s first Old Dominion Athletic Conference player of the year. She holds the team’s career (71) and single-season (22) singles wins records.
Sweet Briar’s Ruth de Souza and Emily Wandling (first-team doubles), Allison Wandling (first-team singles and second-team doubles) and Kate Kotany (second-team doubles with Allison Wandling) all were recognized. Randolph’s Keyu Jin (first-team singles) and Ashley Schmitz (second-team singles) also earned recognition.
Liberty senior Kalani Soli and freshman Esther Lovato were named to the VaSID women’s university division second team for singles.
Soli was named the 2020 ITA Atlantic Regional senior player of the year earlier in the week, and Lovato led Liberty with 18 singles victories.
LU men’s tennis senior Chase Burton was named to the CoSIDA academic NCAA Division I all-district at-large team.
He became the first player in program history to earn the recognition. Burton graduated with a program-record 77 singles victories.
A pair of Lynchburg athletes also received academic all-district accolades as members of the Division III at-large teams.
Junior women’s tennis player Ellen Druebbish and senior men’s lacrosse player Tyler Gallagher earned two of the 20 spots on the District 5 team. Gallagher, who also has twice earned All-America honors for his work on the field, earned the academic honor for the second time in his career.
Student-athletes must carry a cumulative GPA of at least 3.3 and be a starter or significant contributor to his or her team to be eligible for nomination. Because of the coronavirus prematurely ending the spring season, CoSIDA this spring voted based on career accomplishment rather than single season.
The three athletes will appear on the ballot for the All-America at-large teams as a result of the honors announced Thursday.