WTEN_Academic_All-Americans_2024WTEN_Academic_All-Americans_2024
Women's Tennis

Trio of Academic All-Americans

STANFORD, Calif. - Junior Connie Ma was named the Academic All-America® Team Member of the Year for women's tennis when the College Sports Communicators announced their academic All-America teams on Tuesday morning. Ma, also a first-team academic All-American, was recognized alongside teammates Valencia Xu (first team) and Alexandra Yepifanova (second team). 

The Cardinal's three academic All-Americans are tied for the national lead and a school record. This is the second year in which tennis is its own category for academic All-America awards, as it used to previously be honored under the "at-large" category.

Ma boasts a 3.74 GPA majoring in human biology and recently wrapped up her second All-America campaign with a 40-6 overall record, a team-best 21-2 record in duals, and a 24-5 mark against nationally-ranked opponents. She collected her second career All-America nod by virtue of her No. 6 seed in the NCAA singles championship and picked up a pair of ranked wins as part of a run to the round of 16 in Stillwater. She was tied with Yepifanova for second on the team in clinchers (5) and finished the season ranked seventh nationally.

Named an academic All-American for the second time, Xu is majoring in international relations and has a perfect 4.00 GPA. She was a second-teamer as a sophomore last season. Xu went 20-6 in singles this season, primarily playing at No. 6, and 11-4 in duals. She was 9-1 against Pac-12 opponents in the league's final year and picked up a ranked win over No. 47 Jessica Alsola of California in the round of 16 at ITA Northwest Regional Championships in October. Teaming up with Katherine Hui in doubles, the pair went 19-6 during the dual season at No. 3 and beat the only two ranked doubles teams they've faced this season. Xu and Hui won 11 of their final 13 doubles matches, including three in the NCAA Tournament.

Yepifanova, a science, technology and society major with a 3.59 GPA, picked up her first academic All-America award following her second All-America season on the court. The junior is Stanford's first back-to-back singles All-American since Michaela Gordon won three straight from 2018-20. She highlighted Stanford's participation in Oklahoma with a run to the quarterfinals, which cemented her All-America status. Yepifanova wrapped up her season at 26-8 overall in singles, including a 16-4 record against nationally-ranked opponents, and was No. 20 in the final ITA rankings.

Ma and Yepifanova also teamed up in the NCAA doubles championship, just missing out on All-America honors. All-America status is awarded to doubles teams that earn a top-eight seed into the NCAA championship, reach the quarterfinals, or finish in the top 10 of the final ITA doubles rankings. The Stanford duo made the round of 16 in doubles and finished the year ranked 13th nationally with a 25-11 overall record.

Ma and Yepifanova join Xu (2023, 2024) Emily Arbuthnott (2019, 2020, 2021), Alice Barnes (2006), Julie Scott (1998), Heather Willens (1993) and Sandra Birch (1989, 1990, 1991) as Stanford players to earn Academic All-America status.