Head tennis coach Dennis Taylor has announced three new signees to the UT Martin program, as freshman Aziza Aubin, freshman Jana Vreden and sophomore Sina Albersmeier join the Skyhawks for the 2019-20 season.
The three join Jillian Niedzalowski, who inked her National Letter of Intent with UTM in November. Niedzialowski notched team Most Valuable Player accolades in each of her final three seasons at Nichols School in Buffalo, New York.
“This is one of the most athletic group of girls that I have recruited in many years,” Taylor said. “The two key factors that I look at when recruiting are academic strength and athletic talent. All four of these girls are at the very top in those two categories.”
Aubin hails from Sussex, England and recently finished her prep career at Eastbourne College, graduating with a 4.0 Grade Point Average. She competed regularly at international, national and regional levels, winning numerous titles in 2018-19. She was a finalist at the National Doubles U18 event while also representing her regional team of Sussex at the National County Cup from U12’s through U18’s. She was part of the Eastbourne College squad that ranked fourth in National Schools U18 alongside Maresfield TC ladies in 2018. Her Maresfield team posted only one loss all season in 2018-19, finishing as runner-up to Roehampton in the South East (South) Regional Team Tennis League, above the likes of Wimbledon Club, Queens, Campden Hill and Connaught.
A native of Stellenbosch, South Africa, Vreden was an integral part of the successful Bloemhof Girls High School squad. Bloemhof is currently the No. 1 ranked tennis school in all of South Africa, winning the prestigious Amanda Coetzer and Gerrie Berner tournaments for four consecutive seasons. A three-time first teamer at Bloemhof, Vreden has represented her province (Boland) since primary school in the National TSA Schools Tournament. She was also chosen to represent the South African School tour of England in 2017.
Albersmeier is coming off an impressive freshman season under head coach Bill Riddle at Martin Methodist College, an NAIA school located in Pulaski, Tennessee. The Moers, Germany native garnered All-Southern States Athletic Conference accolades, posting a 12-4 record at No. 3 singles to go along with an 11-6 mark in No. 2 doubles. She was also crowned as SSAC Player of the Week on March 19. At the high school level, she was the No. 78 ranked U18 player in Germany while competing at Hermann Runge Gesamtschule.
These newcomers join a Skyhawk squad that advanced to the OVC Championship finals last spring. UTM found its momentum at the end of the season, reeling off a four-match winning streak in the span of eight days before eventually falling to then-undefeated Austin Peay in the league’s championship match.
“When you add these four newcomers to our current four returning players, it will be the most athletically gifted team in Skyhawk history,” Taylor said. “I am extremely excited about the next few years of UT Martin tennis.”