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Pecotic Becomes First Three-Time Ivy League Men's Tennis Player of the Year

By: Princeton Athletic Communications
          Release: 05/02/2013
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Matija Pecotic won his third Ivy League Player of the Year honor.
Courtesy: Princeton Athletic Communications

For the first time in Ivy League men's tennis history, the same person has won the Ivy League Player of the Year award three times.

Princeton's Matija Pecotic is the first Ivy tennis player to have that honor, and he is the 11th person across any sport in which there is an Ivy League Player of the Year to win it three times. He is the sixth Princeton student-athlete to be named Ivy League Player of the Year in his or her sport, following squash players Julia Beaver '01, Yasser El Halaby '06 and Mauricio Sanchez '09, and field hockey players Katie Reinprecht '13 and Paige Schmidt '08.

Pecotic was 26-2 in fall singles including 13-1 against ITA-ranked opponents. In the fall, Pecotic won tournament titles at the Princeton/Farnsworth Invitational, the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center Men's College Invitational, the USTA/ITA Northeast Regional and the Texas Fall Invitational. Pecotic also became the first Princeton player since 1982 and first Ivy Leaguer since 1998 to advance to the semifinals at the ITA All-America tournament, counting a win over then-No. 9 Raymond Sarmiento of USC in the quarterfinals. Pecotic closed the fall season with the consolation singles title at the USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate tournament.

In the spring, Pecotic went 16-3 in singles duals and was ranked in the ITA top 10 nationally from January through late April, checking in as high as No. 2 in the nation in the first poll of the dual-meet season. He enters the championship on a nine-match winning streak including 7-0 in Ivy duals as he extended his streak in Ivy dual singles matches to 22 straight since the final match of his freshman year.

It's the fourth All-Ivy League honor for Pecotic, who was a second-team honoree as a freshman and first-team as a sophomore, junior and senior.

Pecotic and Zack McCourt were named first-team All-Ivy in doubles. It's the first All-Ivy doubles honor for Pecotic and the first All-Ivy honor in either singles or doubles for sophomore McCourt.

The pair went 13-2 together in the fall and 14-3 in the spring, including 6-1 in Ivy League matches, all at the top spot. They combined to win tournament flight titles at the Princeton/Farnsworth Invitational and the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center Men's College Invitational.

McCourt also went 4-0 with Dan Davies in the fall, winning the Penn Invitational top doubles flight title, and 1-0 in the spring. McCourt went 1-1 with Dan Richardson in the fall and 1-0 with Michael Lin in the spring.

All but one of Pecotic's 34 doubles matches between the fall and spring came with McCourt. Pecotic was 1-0 in the spring with Matt Spindler.

While the Tigers narrowly missed out on an at-large berth to the NCAA tournament, presently ranked No. 47 in the nation by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association, Pecotic will continue play at the NCAA singles tournament May 22 in Illinois. Once the final team poll comes out following NCAA play, Princeton will have the chance to finish in the ITA top 50 for the first time since 1995.

2012-13 All-Ivy League

Player of the Year
*Matija Pecotic, Princeton (Sr. - Sliema, Malta)

Rookie of the Year
Dragos Ignat, Columbia (Fr. - Bacao, Romania)

First-Team All-Ivy
Singles
Dragos Ignat, Columbia (Fr. - Bacao, Romania)
*Winston Lin, Columbia (So. - Williamsville, N.Y.)
Sam Fleck, Cornell (So. - Cambridge, United Kingdom)
Shaun Chaudhuri, Harvard (So. - Pleasanton, Calif.)
*Denis Nguyen, Harvard (So. - Anaheim, Calif.)
*Matija Pecotic, Princeton (Sr. - Sliema, Malta)
*John Huang, Yale (Sr. - Irvine, Calif.)

Doubles
Ashok Narayana, Columbia (So. - Houston)
Max Schnur, Columbia (So. - Richmond, Va.)
*Denis Nguyen, Harvard (So. - Anaheim, Calif.)
*Casey MacMaster, Harvard (Jr. -  Fort Collins, Colo.)
*Matija Pecotic, Princeton (Sr. - Sliema, Malta)
Zack McCourt, Princeton (So. - Sunrise, Fla.)

Second-Team All-Ivy
Singles
Michael Riechmann, Brown (So. - Houston)
Ashok Narayana, Columbia (So. - Houston)
Andy Nguyen, Harvard (Sr. - Phoenix)
Alex Steinroeder, Harvard (So. - Concord, Mass.)
Daniel Hoffman, Yale (Sr. - Atherton, Calif.)
Marc Powers, Yale (Sr. - Stamford, Conn.)

Doubles
Sam Fleck, Cornell (So. - Cambridge, United Kingdom)
Xander Centenari, Dartmouth (Sr. - Towson, Md.)
Brandon DeBot, Dartmouth (Jr. - Stevens Point, Wis.)
Andy Nguyen, Harvard (Sr. - Phoenix)
Daniel Hoffman, Yale (Sr. - Atherton, Calif.)
Marc Powers, Yale (Sr. - Stamford, Conn.)

* Unanimous Selection
^ Due to ties in voting, there are seven singles players on the first team

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