Tech senior Joao Monteiro made an historic run to the Final Four at the 2016 NCAA Men’s Tennis Singles Championship, advancing further than any Hokie in program history. Monteiro becomes the Hokies’ third All-American after finishing in the top-16 nationally. In the opening round, he defeated USC’s 41st-ranked Nick Crystal in straight sets before following up with a 6-2, 5-7, 6-3 win over 48th-ranked Or Ram-Harel of Tulsa. In the Sweet 16, Monteiro faced a familiar foe in UVA’s 8th-ranked Ryan Shane. After falling in the first set 6-1, Monteiro rallied in the second to win it 7-5. In the deciding set, Monteiro rolled to a 6-2 win. Monteiro played arguably one of the most exciting matches of the tournament in the Elite 8 as he squared off against 4th-ranked Aleks Vukic of Illinois. The Tech player won the opening set 6-3, but the two kept it close in the second and were tied at 5-5 before Vukic scored the final two to force the third. Monteiro fell behind 3-0 in the set, but scored the next two to close it to 3-2. He trailed at 4-5 with Vukic on serve where he broke the Illini player to make it 5-5. The pair were again tied at 6-6 to force the tiebreak where Monteiro got out to a lead to win it 7-3. In the semifinals, Monteiro’s run came to an end where he fell to UCLA’s 6th-ranked and 2016 national champion Mackenzie McDonald 6-2, 3-6, 6-3.
(Men's Tennis • Senior • Porto, Portugal)
Tech senior Joao Monteiro made a historic run to the Final Four at the 2016 NCAA Men’s Tennis Singles Championship, advancing further than any Hokie in program history. Monteiro becomes the Hokies’ third All-American after finishing in the top-16 nationally, having knocked off four ranked opponents including two top-10s en route to the semifinals.
The Hokies’ track & field team continued it success at the NCAA East Regional over the weekend with 12 qualifying for the NCAA championships in Eugene, Oregon – the third largest group in program history. Virginia Tech had 16 participants in 2012 and 13 in 2010. Javelin thrower Sabine Kopplin got the ball rolling as the first Hokie qualifier followed by Tomas Kruzliak in the hammer throw. Tech’s pole vaulters will be sending four to the national meet. Throwers Matija Muhar and Marek Barta and middle distance runners Hanna Green and Patrick Joseph punched their tickets to Eugene on day two. Neil Gourley and Thomas Curtin closed out the weekend strong for the Hokies as the final two qualifiers in the distance events. The Hokies travel to the outdoor national championships June 8-11.
Under the direction of Coach Bob Phillips, the Tech pole vaulters made school history, yet again, at the NCAA East Regional in Jacksonville, Florida. After finishing first through seventh at the ACC men’s championships, four of those Hokies qualified for the NCAA championships – the largest group ever from a single event to advance to the NCAA championships from Virginia Tech. ACC champion Chris Uhle, Deakin Volz, Torben Laidig and Brad Johnson all qualified for the national meet. The Hokies will have the largest contingent in the pole vault on June 8 in Eugene, followed by Texas A&M with three vaulters and both Texas and Air Force with two apiece. In addition to the four qualifiers, Jared Allison, Jeff Linta and James Steck competed in the men’s field, and Erica Hjerpe competed in the women’s pole vault in the regional.
Virginia Tech president Tim Sands and Director of Athletics Whit Babcock announced that John Sung has been named the new head coach of the Virginia Tech women's lacrosse program. He has served in that same capacity at Winthrop University since May 2011. He oversaw the program’s creation and rapid ascent as a regional powerhouse after beginning competition in 2013. In only the program’s third season in 2015, Sung led Winthrop to a 17-4 record as the Eagles qualified for the NCAA tournament after winning both the Big South regular-season and tournament titles. In 2016, Winthrop went 20-3, again winning the Big South regular season and tournament championships and advancing to another NCAA tournament berth. He was the Big South Coach of the Year in both 2015 and 2016. Sung currently chairs the NCAA Division I Lacrosse Committee and also serves on the U.S. Lacrosse Convention Education Committee.
Under the direction of men’s tennis coach Jim Thompson and his staff, Joao Monteiro matured as a person and a player to become the most accomplished collegiate tennis player in Virginia Tech history. From a freshman working hard to break into the lineup, to helping lead his teammates to four consecutive NCAA championship berths, to advancing to the semifinals of the NCAA men’s tennis individual championship as a senior, the native of Porto, Portugal has come a long way and made Hokie Nation proud!