Goffi Highlights Four Gamecocks Earning All-SEC Honors
April 25, 2013
COLUMBIA, S.C. - No. 17 South Carolina earned three spots on the All-SEC Men's Tennis teams, and head coach Josh Goffi was tabbed the league's Coach of the Year by his peers. Junior Tsvetan Mihov and sophomores Andrew Adams and Thiago Pinheiro were voted to the All-SEC Second Team, making it the first time since 1999 that three Gamecocks have made the list. Goffi's honor is the first SEC Coach of the Year nod in the program's history.
"To be named all-conference in the toughest conference in the country is quite and accomplishment," said Goffi. "It's great to see these guys recognized and appreciated by the SEC coaches for what they have done this year. Tsvetan, Andrew and Thiago definitely deserve this recognition and much, much more. Those three along with Kyle Koch have been our winningest points all year long. Their efforts along with the rest of the team have lifted South Carolina Tennis back into the national spotlight."
In just his third season as a head coach, Goffi led the Gamecocks to their highest ever finish in the SEC as their 7-5 league record tied for third best. The team tied the school record for SEC wins in a season, originally set in 1999, and for the first time since 2003, all six entries in the singles lineup won at least three SEC matches. South Carolina posted its first four-match SEC win streak since 2006 and its first SEC weekend sweep since 2009. The Gamecocks closed the regular season with a rush, knocking off a pair of top-15 teams, including then-No. 8 Kentucky to record the program's first top-10 win since 2005. South Carolina went on to outlast LSU in the SEC Tournament for its first win at the event since 2008. After enduring a difficult first season with a graduation-depleted lineup, Goffi has led his teams to 33 wins in the last two seasons, more than any two consecutive efforts since the 2005 and 2006 teams combined for 34 victories.
Mihov took over the top spot in the Gamecock singles lineup upon arrival this spring, also teaming with Chip Cox in the top doubles spot. Ranked No. 35 in the nation this week, Mihov's 15 singles victories are tied for second on the team. Six of those wins came in SEC action, including two over top-10 opponents in the last two weeks of the season. Only three other players in school history have accumulated at least six SEC singles wins from the No. 1 spot. In doubles, Mihov and Cox rank 18th in the nation behind a 12-10 record that includes five wins over ranked tandems.
Adams is ranked No. 86 this week with a 13-10 record that includes five wins over ranked opponents. Playing most in the No. 2 spot in the lineup, the sophomore went 10-8 in dual matches after an injury slowed him early in the season. Five of those victories were in SEC action. Adams teamed with Pinheiro to form the Gamecocks' No. 3 doubles team late in the season, winning their first six matches to help deliver the doubles point in five of the last six matches.
Pinheiro was named the team's MVP at the Gamecock Gala earlier this week for his play as much as his emotional leadership of the team. With a 15-4 dual-match record, he has the highest singles winning percentage on the team. He went 5-3 in SEC play this season and was the final point in the Gamecocks' 4-3 win over LSU to open the SEC Tournament, rallying from a set down to win in three. It was his seventh three-set victory in eight tries, including six in which he came back from losing the first set.
The Gamecocks will continue their season in the NCAA Tournament, which begins on campus sites on May 10. The bracket and sites will be announced on Thu., April 30, at 5 p.m.
Individual AwardsCoach of the Year: Josh Goffi, South Carolina
Player of the Year: Freshman of the Year: Romain Bogaerts, Mississippi State
Scholar-Athlete of the Year: Daniil Proskura, Alabama
2013 All-SEC First TeamAndreas Mies, Auburn
Nathan Pasha, Georgia
KU Singh, Georgia
Ben Wagland, Georgia
Tom Jomby, Kentucky
Anthony Rossi, Kentucky
Jonas Lutjen, Ole Miss
Nik Scholtz, Ole Miss
Romain Bogaerts, Mississippi State
Mikelis Libietis, Tennessee
Hunter Reese, Tennessee
Jeremy Efferding, Texas A&M
Gonzales Austin, Vanderbilt
Ryan Lipman, Vanderbilt
2013 All-SEC Second TeamJarryd Botha, Alabama
Becker O'Shaughnessey, Alabama
Daniel Cochrane, Auburn
Florent Diep, Florida
Stephane Piro, Florida
Chris Simpson, LSU
Stefan Szacinski, LSU
William Kallberg, Ole Miss
Malte Stropp, Mississippi State
Andrew Adams, South Carolina
Tsvetan Mihov, South Carolina
Thiago Pinheiro, South Carolina
Jarryd Chaplin, Tennessee
Harry Adams, Texas A&M
Shane Vinsant, Texas A&M