Nov. 25, 2013
ATHENS, Ga. --- The Georgia men’s tennis team held its annual awards banquet Friday night at the Athens Country Club, celebrating the successes of the 2012-13 NCAA Final Four team and honoring head coach Manuel Diaz in a surprise ceremony to commemorate the conclusion of his 25th season at the helm.
The program began with the handing out of the team awards, which were as follows:
- Danny Birchmore Training Award: Nathan Pasha
- Jack Frierson Recruiting Award: Nathan Pasha
- Mike Sell Return of Serve Award: Nick Wood
- Henry Feild Sportsmanship Award: Will Oliver
- Pierre Howard Academic Award: Garrett Brasseaux
- Norman Holmes Backhand Award: Garrett Brasseaux
- Tim Delaney Competitor Award: Austin Smith
- David Dick Doubles Award: Eric Diaz
- Manuel Diaz Approach Award: Ben Wagland
- Lindsey Hopkins Volley Award: Hernus Pieters
- Jim Causey Overhead Award: Casey Kay
- Mack Crenshaw Big Serve Award: Marco Nunez
- Benedict Brothers Forehand Award: Nathan Pasha
- Mikael Pernfors MVP Award: Ben Wagland
- Bill Shippey Lob Award: Garrett Brasseaux
- Will Glenn Most Improved Award: Austin Smith
Diaz and associate head coach Will Glenn then recapped the 2012-13 season in which the Bulldogs finished 26-5 overall, swept both the SEC regular season and tournament titles for the first time since 2007, and reached the NCAA semifinals for the sixth time in eight years.
The Bulldogs also honored departing senior Will Oliver.
In the surprise ceremony to honor Diaz for his 25 seasons as head coach, speeches were given by UGA lettermen Trey Carter and Jamie Laschinger, in addition to Dr. Ham Magill – son of the legendary Dan Magill, Diaz’s predecessor. Former Bulldog and current USTA president Gordon Smith, as well as Georgia greats John Isner and Mikael Pernfors, taped special video messages for Diaz.
The Bulldogs were then recognized for their SEC titles on Saturday afternoon in an on-field ceremony during the first quarter of the Georgia football game in Sanford Stadium.
Georgia opens its spring schedule Jan. 17-20 at the Georgia Tech Invitational in Atlanta.