East Carolina Men's Tennis Signs Pair
June 1, 2006
GREENVILLE, N.C. - A two-time state champion and a four-year all-conference performer have signed national letters-of-intent to attend and play men's tennis at East Carolina University, head coach Shawn Heinchon announced Thursday.
Whit Whitwell from Little Rock, Ark., and Greg Simon, from Greenville, N.C., have joined the Pirate program and will enroll at ECU this fall.
Whitwell, who has earned a No. 1 United States Tennis Association state ranking in the 18's Division after compiling a No. 2 rating in the 16's, captured a singles title for Little Rock's Lutheran High School as a sophomore while competing in Arkansas' 2-A prep classification. As a freshman, Whitwell played a key role in leading Lutheran to a state doubles championship. He also reached the Sweet Sixteen at the National Copper Bowl, one of the nation's most prestigious Junior Tennis tourneys.
Currently rated as the second-highest prospect in Arkansas by TennisRecruiting.net, Whitwell has posted a 25-6 national record against opponents designated in a similar classification or lower. He also holds a top 30 regional rank and is listed among the top 200 players nationally after attending Newk's Tennis Academy in Texas over the past two years.
Simon, who earned four tennis letters as an all-conference standout at J.H. Rose High School, is listed among the state's top 15 players in the USTA's 18's and currently holds a North Carolina rank of 29th by TennisRecruiting.net.
He helped Rose reach the finals of the Class 4-A state doubles championship with an improbable run as the tourney underdog before falling in three competitive sets. While serving as team captain, Simon also was selected as the program's most valuable player and received both Rose's coaches and leadership award. In addition to his four-year all-conference accolades, he was chosen as the league's player-of-the-year.
Simon and Whitwell will also join early signees Sam McSpadden (Little Rock, Ark.), Bryan Oakley (Statesville, N.C.) and Matt Peeler (Lexington, N.C.) on the Pirates' roster next fall.
East Carolina's 2006 recruiting efforts have been recognized and cited by TennisRecruiting.net as one of the nation's top 30 classes and best among all other Conference USA programs.
Simon action photo on home page courtesy of Rhett Butler (Greenville Daily Reflector)