The Missouri Valley Conference recognizes James McKie of Drake University and Natasha James of Evansville as Tennis Athletes of the Week.
Men's Tennis Athlete of the Week
James McKie, Sr., Drake, Edinburgh, Scotland
Senior James McKie helped spark Drake to a 2-0 road mark this past weekend registering a 3-1 combined singles/doubles ledger. In the Bulldogs' 4-3 victory at Nebraska last Friday (Feb. 8), he posted improved to 7-0 in singles during the dual campaign with a 6-4, 6-3 win at the No. 2 singles position. He followed with a pair of triumphs in Drake's 4-3 win over No. 30 VCU on Saturday (Feb. 9). In doubles, he paired with Anis Ghorbel to notch an 8-6 decision at the No. 1 slot to help the Bulldogs in their quest to earn the doubles tally. In singles, with the match all squared at three, he captured the third-set tiebreaker versus No. 67 Alexis Heugas, 7-0, to clinch the match in favor of Drake. The victory is believed to be the highest-ranked opponent the Bulldogs have defeated in program history.
On the season, McKie boasts a team-best 44-9 combined singles/doubles mark, including a team-high 24-3 singles ledger. During the dual campaign, he is sporting a 12-2 combined record, including 8-0 in singles. With his three weekend victories, McKie tied Ross Nwachukwu (1990-94) for sixth-place on the all-time victory list at Drake with 183 career triumphs.
Women's Tennis Athlete of the Week
Natasha James, So., Evansville, Las Vegas, Nev.
A star in both singles and doubles, Natasha James won in each as the Purple Aces downed Austin Peay by a 5-2 final on Saturday. With partner Marketa Trousilova, James picked up an 8-6 doubles win over Ornella Di Salvo and Andra Cornea to jump their record to 3-2 on the season. In singles, James picked up a win in flight one over Alison Carre, 6-2, 6-4. She is now 4-1 this spring.