April 24, 2014
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Gonzales Austin and Ryan Lipman of the Vanderbilt men's tennis team received 2014 All-Southeastern Conference honors on Thursday afternoon, as announced by the conference office. Austin was named All-SEC First Team, while Lipman was named to the Second Team. Austin and Lipman have received All-Conference accolades in each season they've been with the Commodores.
Vanderbilt was one of six teams to have players named to both First and and Second Team. Florida and Kentucky had the most honorees, with four a piece. Highlighting the field was Player of the Year Nik Scholtz from Ole Miss, Coach of the Year Steve Denton of Texas A&M, Freshman of the Year Florian Lakat from Mississippi State and Scholar-Athlete of the Year Daniil Proskura of Alabama. Voting was conducted by the leagues head coaches.
Austin has posted an overall record of 27-8 during the 2013-14 season. He is 15-4 in dual play and 5-3 in conference play, playing primarily at the No. 1 position. Ausitn is 14-5 against ranked opponents, and got as high as No. 9 in the ITA singles rankings. The Vandy junior has posted an 11-5 record against this year's field of All-SEC first and second teamers.
In the fall, the Miami, Fla. native earned a bid into the National Indoor Championships by making it to the semifinals of the ITA All-American Championship, knocking off three ranked players in the process. At National Indoors, Austin made a earned a trip all the way to the semifinals before falling to the No. 8 player in the country.
Lipman started the year ranked at No. 4 in the ITA singles rankings, but fell out after sitting out during the fall. The redshirt-senior returned to action in dual play and made an immediate impact. He holds a dual record of 15-5, including going 8-2 in conference play. Lipman won nine-straight matches during the year, playing primarily at the No. 2 position. Despite not playing in the fall, Lipman picked up nine wins against ranked opponents in 2014.
The Nashville, Tenn. native has put together one of the best careers ever by a Commodore. He's six singles wins shy of matching the all-time wins record of 99 set by two-time All-American Bobby Reynolds. Lipman is also only five wins shy of the combined wins record of 172 set by Scott Brown.
Together Lipman and Austin make up the best doubles team in Vanderbilt men's tennis history. The duo hold the career and single season wins record by a doubles team at 32 and 26, respectively. They've worked their way all the way up to No. 1 in the ITA doubles rankings and haven't dropped out of the top five the entire dual season.
The Vandy duo is 26-6 overall this season and 16-4 in dual play. They've also put together a record of 15-4 against ranked teams this season.
Vanderbilt will await the announcement of the NCAA regional sites on April 29. The Commodores, currently ranked No. 21 by the ITA, will likely be a No. 2 seed at one of 16 regional sites.