The No. 53 Ivy League champion men’s tennis team picked up another award last week when the annual all-Ivy teams were released. Freshmen Haig Schneiderman was a uninamous selection for Ivy League Rookie of the Year, and senior Bogdan Borta was named to the all-Ivy first team for singles. Junior Jon Wong and junior transfer Mihai Nichifor were named to the second team all-Ivy in singles, and Borta and Nichifor were named first team all-Ivy in doubles. In addition, Wong and Schneiderman were named second team all-Ivy in doubles, and Schneiderman earned honorable mention for his singles play.
Schneiderman was the second Columbia player ever to be honored as Rookie of the Year. Wong was named Rookie of the Year in 2007 when he went undefeated at No. 3 and 4 singles to lead the Lions to the 2007 title. This season, Schneiderman went 13-6 in the spring and 6-1 in Ivy play, mostly at No. 5 singles.
“Personally, the award represents all of the effort that I have put into improving and reminds me of those who helped me along the way,” said Schneiderman. “All of the upperclassman have proven themselves over the years, and people know what to expect from them, so it’s nice to come in during my freshmen year and really be an addition.”
Schneiderman, who is from New York City, was at the match against Harvard last season when the Lions lost 4-3, and saw the Crimson win the Ivy title with a record of 7-0.
“I really wanted to come in and get the guys and the coaches back to the top,” said Schneiderman.
Schneiderman expected the team to be in rebuilding mode after the loss of three starters from last year, but the Lions performed above expectations.
Schneiderman is quick to spread the credit, however, citing others on the team as equally deserving.
“I might have won Rookie of the Year, but Mihai was a newcomer and went 7-0,” he said. “He was our MVP. We also had Rajeev [Deb-Sen] and Ekin [Sezgen] really make an impact and I think we all really helped, motivated, and pushed each other to come up big, especially in the important moments. We were really ‘Rookies of the Year,’ I believe, going 16-5 between the three of us in Ivy League play.”