Sara Daavettila from the University of North Carolina, Katarina Jokic of the University of Georgia, University of Virginia’s Emma Navarro and Estela Perez-Somarriba from the University of Miami are the four finalists for the Class of 2021 Honda Sport Award for Tennis as announced by Chris Voelz, Executive Director of THE Collegiate Women Sports Awards (CWSA).
The Honda Sport Award has been presented annually by the CWSA for the past 45 years to the top women athletes in 12 NCAA-sanctioned sports and signifies “the best of the best in collegiate athletics”. The winner of the sport award becomes a finalist for the Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year and the prestigious 2021 Honda Cup which will be presented on a telecast on CBS Sports Network, on June 28, at 9 pm ET.
The tennis finalists were chosen by a combination of NCAA Championship finishes and national tennis rankings. The Honda Sport Award winner for Tennis will be announced later this week after voting by administrators from over 1,000 NCAA member schools. Each NCAA member institution has a vote.
Daavettila, a fifth-year senior from Williamson, Mich., was the top seed entering the 2021 NCAA Singles Championship and ranked as high as No. 1 in the ITA national rankings. She is the 2021 ACC Player of the year and a seven-time ITA All-America selection. With a career record of 149-35, she is currently second in program history with 149 career singles victories. She was the 2019 ITA Fall National Championship singles titlist and a member of three ITA National Team Indoor Championships.
A senior from Novi Grad, Bosnia, Jokic is a two-time Honda Award finalist and ranked as high as No. 1 in the ITA national rankings for two weeks this season. She is the 2021 SEC Player of the Year and only the second Bulldog to be SEC Freshman of the Year and Player of the Year in their career. She entered the 2021 NCAA Champions as a No. 4 seed in single and a 5-8 see in the NCAA Doubles Tournament.
Named the 2021 ACC Freshman of the Year, Navarro entered the 2021 NCAA Singles Championship as the No. 3 seed and went on to capture the 2021 NCAA Singles Championship. The freshman from Charleston, S.C., began her career by winning her first 14 singles matches and ranked as high as No. 1 in the ITA national rankings. She was a six-time ACC Freshman of the Week and a two-time ACC Player of the Week.
Perez-Somarriba, a fifth-year senior from Madrid, Spain, was the Class of 2019 Honda Award winner for tennis and a two-time Honda Award finalist. She is a four-time first-team All-ACC honoree and advanced to the 2021 NCAA Singles Championship title match finishing runner-up after capturing the title in 2019. She ranked as high as No. 1 in the ITA national rankings and is a four-time ITA All-American in singles.
The CWSA, celebrating its 45th anniversary year, has honored the nation’s top NCAA women athletes for their superior athletic skills, leadership, academic excellence and eagerness to participate in community service. Since commencing its partnership in 1986, Honda has provided more than $3.4 million in institutional grants to the universities of the award winners and nominees to support women’s athletics programs.