SOUTH AFRICA – Ole Miss men’s tennis sophomore Nik Scholtz finished exams early this fall, so he could go home to his native country and play in two ITF Futures events. Saturday, Scholtz defeated Frenchman Simon Cauvard 6-3, 6-0 to win his first ITF title.
The 2012 SEC Freshman of the Year reached the semis in the first Futures event last week in Potchefstroom, where he lost to Cauvard, the eventual winner. Scholtz had lost to Cauvard four times previously.
Moments after he won his first ITF title, Scholtz tweeted: “I just won my first pro tournament. I am really humbled. Thanks to everyone who supported me #blessed.”
This week, Scholtz teamed up with former Rebel Tucker Vorster in doubles, as well as playing singles. Both players reached the semifinals of singles and then had to play each other. Scholtz won a hotly-contested match 6-3 in the third to advance to Saturday’s final.
Both Ole Miss head coach Billy Chadwick and associate head coach Toby Hansson kept up with the results and talked almost daily with Scholtz, who was the only freshman to earn All-America honors in both singles and doubles last season.
“We are real excited about Nik’s first ITF title,” Chadwick said. “It was a great showing by Nik to reach the semis the first week and then to win the title this week. He has really shown improvement in his game, and we are excited about the spring season.”
Scholtz wrapped up an excellent 2012 year, which included representing South Africa in Davis Cup in addition to all his accolades as a Rebel. He began the fall ranked No. 5 in the nation in singles and No. 2 in doubles and finished the fall with an 8-2 record, including winning the ITA Southern Regional Championship.
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