Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Former Tournament MVP Wins NCAA National Championship

In 2010, defending Ohio Division II Singles State Champion, Joey Fritz and his Cincinnati Country Day team came to compete in the DecoTurf High School Tennis Team Championships Boys B Division. Fritz went 4-0 in tournament play to lead the Indians to a grueling 3-2 win for tournament championship.Fritz's victory in the championship match took less than thirty minutes helping earn the nation's 19th ranked senior Most Valuable Player honors. 

Fritz went on to finish his senior season as an Ohio Division II Singles State Finalist. He was named a First-Team All-State selection by the Ohio Tennis Coaches Association. Fritz also become just the third player in tournament history to be named a NHSTAAF All-American. 

Following his outstanding high school career Fritz signed to play his collegiate tennis at Amherst. “It was really difficult. I struggled a lot with nerves," said Fritz following his freshman year for the Lord Jeffs "It’s different going from individual competition to team competition. I really enjoy the team environment more than the individual one.” His transition to the collegiate level was seamless though as he was a key contributor on the Amherst team that captured the 2011 NCAA Division III National Championship. Fritz's 6-1, 6-2 win over Emory's Nicolas Szureck helped the Lord Jeffs clinch the 5-2 victory for the programs first national title.

During his sophomore season Fritz continued his success winning the USTA/ITA New England Regional Championship singles tournament in the fall. Despite not competing in the NCAA singles or doubles tournaments in the spring Fritz garnered ITA Division III Singles All-American honors. During his sophomore season he was also named an ITA Scholar-Athlete.

Moving to the top of the lineup his junior season Fritz posted a 11-3 record including notching six wins in a row during a key stretch in April. He was named First-Team All-NESCAC and his on-court success helped Fritz garner ITA Division III Singles All-American honors for the second straight season. He was also selected for the CoSIDA Capital One At-Large Academic All-District first team.

Fritz took a 43-17 career record into his senior season. He rolled off an 18-5 regular season record as the top-ranked singles player in the ITA’s Northeast Region. Fritz's accomplishments included a season-best eight-match win streak and an 18-5 doubles record as half of the top-ranked doubles pairing in the region. His success earned his NESCAC Player of the Year honors.

He began his championship run playing the top singles spot for the Lord Jeffs who captured their second NCAA team championship with a 5-3 victory against the Claremont-M-S Stags. Fritz's run for the NCAA Division III Singles Championship began as the No. 2 overall seed. Fritz won the coveted prize with a 6-2, 6-1 victory against top seed Warren Wood of the host Claremont-M-Sc Stags. The singles championships was the first in Amherst history. During his tournament run it was announced that Fritz had been named Intercollegiate Tennis Association Senior Player of the Year. 

"Going into this week, the team championship means everything to us," Fritz said. "This individual championship is great, but it's icing on the cake. In the [singles final] match, that is probably the best I have served all week. I needed it because my legs were really tired."

Fritz's success at Amherst were not just on the court, he was once again named to the CoSIDA Capital One At-Large Academic All-District first team and received a bachelor's degree in Asian languages and civilizations. Fritz plans to work in Beijing, China, for Admissionado, an education consulting firm which advises Chinese students how to get into American universities.

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