Nov. 13, 2009
GREENVILLE, N.C. - Neena Wanko, a two-time state finalist and 2009 North Carolina Athletic Association 3A singles champion from Union Pines High School, has signed a national letter-of-intent to attend and play tennis at East Carolina University beginning next fall according to an announcement from head women's tennis coach Tom Morris Friday.
Wanko completed her three-year high school career with a 109-4 record, which included three Cape Fear Valley Conference championships and a pair of 3A Mid-East Regional titles. As a senior, she rolled to a 35-0 mark in singles and doubles play after posting a pair of 37-2 records as a freshman and junior.
With a current rank of No. 21 in the Southern Section and No. 3 in North Carolina, Wanko has also compiled 422 career match triumphs in 141 United States Tennis Association events. She is the owner of 20 career tournament wins, been a three-time North Carolina Southern Cup participant and climbed as high as No. 81 in the national rankings.
"We are extremely fortunate to have a student-athlete such as Neena Wanko commit to our program at ECU," Morris said. "Neena carries a weighted GPA of 4.2 and is the top-ranked senior recruit in North Carolina. A great athlete, I expect Neena to make an immediate impact playing high in our lineup in both singles and doubles as a freshman. Neena is clearly a great catch for Pirate Tennis and her presence will help ensure our future improvement."
Since Morris has taken over the ECU women's tennis program in 1999, he has guided the Lady Pirates to 164 victories and successful campaigns in 10 of his 11 years, which recently includes the top four single-season win totals in school history - a 17-9 mark in 2005, back-to-back school-record 19-9 and 19-10 finishes in 2006 and 2007, respectively, and a 17-6 ledger in 2008.
East Carolina, which compiled a 15-7 mark last year, opens its 2010 spring schedule Jan. 22 against North Carolina A&T.