Men's Tennis


Abe Souza
Abe Souza

Class:
Senior

Hometown:
St. Louis, Mo.

High School:
St. Louis University High School

Height / Weight:
6-2 / 165

Birthdate:
12/25/1988

Senior 2010-11
University of Illinois Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year ... Voted Advantage Illinois Most Valuable Player and earned the team's Chris Martin Fighting Illini Spirit Award ... Was the Midwest recipient of the ITA/ Arthur Ashe Leadership and Sportsmanship Award ... Finished his Illinois career with 99 singles wins, tying him with Neil Adams for 12th all-time in most career wins ... Named to the CoSIDA/Capital One Academic All-District second team ... Ranked second on the team with 25 singles wins, including a team-high 18 in duals ... Went 8-2 in singles in Big Ten play ... Tallied the second-most doubles wins on the team with 19 ... Reached a career-high No. 20 nationally in doubles with Dennis Nevolo...Academic All-Big Ten.

Junior 2009-10
University of Illinois Male Junior Scholar-Athlete of the Year ... Set new career-best wins totals in both singles (35) and doubles (20) ... Singles total was also a team high and ranks tied for seventh all-time for most wins in a single season ... Went a perfect 14-0 at home ... Posted a 26-3 mark in dual matches and 8-2 in Big Ten play ... Tallied five wins over nationally ranked opponents ... Reached career-high rankings in singles (No. 57) and in doubles (No. 60) with Marek Czerwinski ... Finished No. 63 in the final national singles rankings and ninth in the Midwest Region ... Also finished No. 63 in the final national doubles rankings with Czerwinski ... Put together separate eight-match and 10-match winning streaks and closed out the season with six straight victories ... Voted co-Advantage Illinois Most Valuable Player with Czerwinski ... Named to the CoSIDA/ESPN the Magazine Academic All-District second team ... Earned the team Scholar-Athlete Award with a 3.81 GPA in history ... Academic All-Big Ten honoree ... Big Ten Distinguished Scholar Award recipient ... ITA Scholar-Athlete.

Sophomore 2008-09
University of Illinois Male Sophomore Scholar-Athlete of the Year ... Finished the year with a 23-9 overall singles record, going 10-4 in dual match play ... Went 5-3 in Big Ten matches ... Compiled a strong 13-5 record in tournament play ... Saw action at the Nos. 4-6 positions, primarily at No. 6, where he carded a 5-1 record ... Won his first three matches to qualify for the main draw of the ITA Midwest Regional tournament ... Ended the year going 8-4 in doubles with four different partners ... Earned the team Scholar- Athlete Award with a 3.67 GPA in History as well as the Strength and Conditioning Award for his second year in a row ... ITA Scholar-Athlete.

Freshman 2007-08
Won his first collegiate match over Alabama's Saketh Myneni in the fall at the Olympia Fields Invitational ... Went 16-17 overall and 5-4 in the dual season in singles ... Played at No. 6 singles, going 2-1 in Big Ten play ... Had a five-match winning streak in singles action starting October 7 ... Finished 4-8 in doubles play and 1-0 in conference matches at three doubles ... Honored with the Strength and Conditioning and Most Improved Player awards as voted on by his teammates.

Juniors / High School
A four-year letterwinner in tennis at St. Louis University High ... Led the Junior Billikens to their first team state title in 25 years ... Won the 2007 Missouri state singles title without relinquishing a set the entire season ... Named first-team St. Louis Post Dispatch All-Metro as a sophomore, junior and senior ... Named the 2007 Post Dispatch Tennis Player of the Year ... Ranked No. 1 in singles and doubles in Boys 16s and 18s in the Missouri Valley Section ... Was ranked No. 36 nationally in singles in Boys 16s and No. 53 in 18s ... Was ranked No. 3 nationally in Boys 18s in doubles ... Reached the round of 16 at the National Championships in Kalamazoo, Mich., in Boys 16s singles ... Academically, received first honors all eight semesters of high school and maintained a 3.96 GPA.

Personal
Born Abraham Judson Souza on Dec. 25, 1988 ... Son of Robert, a professional trumpet player, and Susan, a music teacher and former professional pianist ... Has one sister, Gabriella, who graduated from the University of Kansas in 2007 ... Enjoys playing ping pong and watching movies ... Favorite athlete is Roger Federer ... Names Carl Walker, a former coach, as the most influential person in his athletic career because of his strong support ... Most influential people in life are his parents, who have never stopped believing in him and his dreams ... Plans on pursuing a professional career after graduation.

Career Statistics

Singles Doubles Season Overall Big Ten Overall Big Ten 2007-08 16-17 2-1 4-8 1-0 2008-09 23-9 5-3 8-4 0-0 2009-10 35-6 8-2 20-19 7-3 2010-11 25-14 8-2 19-19 6-4 Total 99-46 23-8 51-50 14-7

HEADLINES