Thursday, May 25, 2017

Gold Rush produce record number of NAIA All-Americans

NEW ORLEANS — Coach Alan Green reloaded at midterm, produced a second straight national runner-up finish in men's tennis four months later — and was rewarded Tuesday with a school-record four All-Americans on the NAIA's committee-selected team.

Catalin Fifea and Antoine Richard made the first team, and Moses Micheal and Karan Salwan were on the second team. All were XULA newcomers in 2017 except for Salwan, who was first-team All-America a year ago. Fifea, Richard and Micheal enrolled at XULA in January.

Fifea — a junior sociology major from Bucharest, Romania, a graduate of General School No. 31 and a transfer from NCAA Division I's VCU — was 11-2 this year in singles and 11-8 in doubles. He led the Gold Rush in singles winning percentage. Earlier this month he was named Louisiana Newcomer of the Year.

Richard, a freshman finance major from Laval, Quebec, and a graduate of Le Tremplin, was 9-6 in singles and 13-4 in doubles with Micheal as his partner. Previously Richard was chosen ITA NAIA National and Region IV (South) Rookie of the Year and first-team All-Louisiana.

Micheal, a freshman business major from Kaduna, Nigeria, and a graduate of Universal School, was 7-6 in singles and led in 5-of-6 unfinished matches. He recorded victories against a pair of 2017 second-team All-Americans: Lucien Samitier of William Carey and Julian Turosienski of Keiser.

Salwan, from New Delhi, India, a graduate of Modern School, and a transfer from DI Utah State, was a team-leading 17-4 singles and 16-7 in doubles. A business management major, Salwan received his bachelor's degree May 13.

Salwan joins Zach Taylor, Loic Didavi, Nikita Soifer and Kyle Montrel as Gold Rush players with multi-year All-America honors. This is the sixth straight season that the Gold Rush have a first-team All-America player.

Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director

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