CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – MIT's men's tennis senior Edwin Zhang (Falls Church, Va.) was selected as the recipient of the Northeast region's Arthur Ashe Leadership and Sportsmanship Award for the second consecutive year on Wednesday, as announced by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA). He is just the second person in the history of the program to receive this prestigious award and the first to win it more than once.
The prestigious award, which dates back to 1982, recognizes outstanding individuals in all divisions at the regional and national level. It is awarded to NCAA Divisions I, II and III, NAIA and JuCo men's and women's players who have exhibited outstanding sportsmanship and leadership as well as scholastic, extracurricular and tennis achievements.
"I can think of no one more deserving of this award than Edwin Zhang," said MIT men's tennis head coach, Dave Hagymas. "Edwin epitomizes what college athletics should be: a tough competitor that competes in a fair and ethical way."
Zhang wrapped up his senior season with a record of 14-7 in singles action and 15-4 in doubles. He never played a singles match in any position other than the top spot and was a staple at No. 2 doubles, falling in just one match all season. He helped lead the Engineers to its 16th straight New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) title by winning both singles and both doubles matches throughout the weekend, being named the NEWMAC Athlete of the Year for the second year in a row and the Tournament Most Outstanding Player.
Last week, MIT made its ninth straight NCAA appearance, defeating Nichols College in the first round by a score of 5-0 before falling to Bowdoin College in the second round, 5-1. Against Bowdoin, Zhang and freshman Kenny Gea (Irvine, Calif.) earned the Engineers' lone point at No. 2 doubles, defeating Noah Bragg and Kyle Wolstencroft by a score of 8-2.
Zhang will graduate in June with majors in electrical engineering, computer science and mathematics. He has researched in MIT's Media Lab and held internships with Kamcord, Crittercism, Northrop Grumman Corporation and Cooliris, Inc. He is also a member of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.