SKILLMAN, NJ -- The Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Awards Committee after receiving nominations from ITA member coaches in the Northeast Region has announced that Williams College senior Kristin Alotta and sophomore Kara Shoemaker are 2012 award winners.
Kristin Alotta, a captain, was named the Northeast Region Senior Player of the Year. She is the second Eph in the last three years to be named the region's top senior player, joining Grace Baljon who won in 2010.
Alotta plays #1 singles for the Ephs and teams with sophomore Kathleen Elkins at #2 doubles. Earlier this season Alotta recorded her 100th career singles win. She now has 106 singles wins and with her doubles win in the 5-0 win Tufts last Sunday she recorded her 94th doubles win, giving her 200 career wins in the Purple Valley.
Most recently Alotta was named First Team All-NESCAC in both singles and doubles. After the NCAA Team Tournament concludes in Cary, NC, Alotta will be back on the court competing in the NCAA Singles Tournament. A year ago Alotta advanced to the semifinals of the 2011 NCAA Singles Tournament.
"Kristin is having a tremendous senior year," stated head coach Alison Swain. "Sometimes achieving the kind of success that she has in her first three years can put pressure on a player. Kristin has a perfect mindset for senior year. She is not playing for individual honors but rather to help the team achieve our goals and this has allowed her to keep improving and play her best tennis yet."
Kara Shoemaker was named the ITA Northeast Player to Watch. It is hard to under estimate the improvement in play of Kara Shoemaker from her first year to now.
It is rare that a player jumps into a tournament-tested lineup like the Ephs from outside the top six to play at #2 in singles and at #1 doubles, but that is why Kara Shoemaker was named the ITA Northeast Player to Watch.
"Kara came into our program with a lot of weapons in her game, but hadn't completely mastered her own game style yet," Swain stated. "Over the last year, Kara has come into her own. She has improved her game beyond any expectation and has also improved her competitive mentality, her fitness, and her strength. The combination of all these factors has allowed Kara to really step up on our team and add strength to the top of our lineup."
Shoemaker is the third Eph to win the Northeast Player to Watch award in the last five years, joining her doubles partner Taylor French '12 (2010) and Grace Baljon (2008).
Shoemaker will also be competing in the NCAA Singles Tournament after the conclusion of the next week's team championships.
Next up for Alotta and Shoemaker and the 21-2 Eph team is a National Quarterfinal match versus Claremont-Mudd-Scripps at 3:30 PM in Cary, NC, on May 21st.