East Central Community College’s Ali Grace Walker today was named the nation’s Most Improved JUCO Sophomore Women’s Tennis Player by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association.
The announcement was made during the ITA’s virtual awards ceremony on Friday, May 29.
Walker of Decatur, who prepped at Newton County High School, had earlier received the ITA’s Most Improved JUCO Sophomore Women’s Tennis Player Award for Region III.
She completed her coronavirus-shortened 2020 season with a 10-2 overall record at No. 3 singles, and teamed with sophomore Josie Hurst (Newton County) for a 10-1 overall record at No. 2 doubles. Walker had a 9-1 singles and doubles record against Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges competition.
Walker was 10-6 overall in singles play in 2019, and teamed with Hurst for an 11-7 overall record in doubles play that season.
“I could not be happier for Ali Grace,” said ECCC Tennis Coach Jay Pacelli. “She put her heart into being a terrific singles and doubles player for East Central. Ali Grace had a huge role in elevating East Central tennis to a national program status, and I am thrilled the ITA recognized one of the finest individuals I have ever had the privilege to coach. Congrats Ali Grace!”
The 2020 ECCC Lady Warrior tennis team finished the 2020 season ranked No. 21 in the Oracle/ITA JUCO Top 25 and No. 7 in Region III.