Sydney Jackson stepped into a new leading role for the Hope College women’s tennis team and flourished.
The junior from Fort Wayne, Indiana (Carroll HS) moved up to the top singles and doubles flights this season and went undefeated in Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association matches. As a result, MIAA coaches voted Jackson as the league’s Most Valuable Player.
With Jackson atop the lineup, the Flying Dutch won all of their league matches and claimed the 27th MIAA championship in team history. Hope has captured six consecutive MIAA titles.
Jackson is the Flying Dutch’s 18th MIAA MVP and fourth in a row. The biomedical and bioelectrical engineering major joins teammate Leah Newhof on the first team. Senior Bailey Chorney and junior Saydee Johns are second-team selections.
“Sydney handled the move to No. 1 singles and No. 1 doubles really well,” head coach Bob Cawood said. “I’m very proud of the work she puts in. We are fortunate to have a player such as Sydney on our team.”
In singles, Jackson posted a 7-0 record against MIAA foes. She earned All-MIAA First Team honors in 2019 at No. 3 singles.
In doubles, Jackson partnered at the No. 1 flight with Newhof for four wins and Annika Weeber for three.
Newhof (Caledonia, Michigan / Grand Rapids Christian) excelled in MIAA play as well. The exercise science major went 4-0 against MIAA opponents at both No. 2 singles and No. 1 doubles.
This is Newhof’s third All-MIAA First Team recognition. She earned the distinction in 2018 and 2019 at Calvin University.
“Leah did really well moving up to No. 2 singles and No. 1 doubles,” Cawood said. “For us to have those two anchors at the top of our lineup, it bodes well for the rest of the match.”
Chorney (Waunakee, Wisconsin / Waunakee) moved up two singles flights this season. The business and Spanish double major went 3-0 at No. 3 singles and 4-0 at No. 2 doubles in MIAA matches.
Chorney also was selected as the recipient of the MIAA’s Karen Caine Scholar-Athlete Award.
“She worked really hard this season and took everything head on,” Cawood said. “She’s probably playing the best tennis of her career.”
Johns (Holland, Michigan / Holland) went 5-0 at No. 2 singles and No. 2 doubles for the Flying Dutch. She is a special education major.
“It was awesome to see her step into a more prominent role and be extremely successful,” Cawood said. “She can be an amazing player.”