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Jun 5, 2014 5:32 PM by KVOA Sports (via University of Arizona)

Arizona tennis star Lacey Smyth named Pac-12 scholar athlete of the year

TUCSON - Arizona senior Lacey Smyth was named the Pac-12 Women's Tennis Scholar-Athlete of the Year, the conference announced on Thursday.

Smyth led the Wildcats to one of their highest rankings in history at No. 23, posting a 16-6 singles record playing at the No. 1 spot all season for UA.

The Oceanside, Calif., native earned the ITA Regional Senior of the Year award after competing in the NCAA Singles Championships for the third-straight year. A second team All-Pac-12 selection this season and a first team Pac-12 All-Academic honoree, Smyth holds the highest grade point average on the team with a 3.79 mark, majoring in elementary education.

"Lacey was one of the hardest working and determined people I ever trained," Arizona head coach Vicky Maes said. "Her desire to succeed in the classroom was just as important to her as achieving on the tennis court. It is this type of attitude that kept her focused throughout her entire career here and it is wonderful to see her recognized for her countless efforts."

In order to be eligible for the Pac-12 Scholar-Athlete of the Year award, student-athletes must be a senior (in athletics eligibility) on track to receive a degree, have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher, participate in at least 50 percent of the scheduled contests in the sport and have a minimum of one year in residence at the institution.

Each Pac-12 institution may nominate one individual per sport, and the winners are selected by a committee of Pac-12 staff members at the conclusion of each sport's regular season. The athletic accomplishments of the nominees are a consideration in the voting for the award.

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