TEMPE, Ariz. – The Intercollegiate Tennis Association proudly announced its 2018 ITA Women’s Collegiate Tennis Hall of Fame induction class on Wednesday, with Linda Gates, Patty Fendick-McCain, Mary Ellen Grant (Gordon) and Dr. Ann Lebedeff comprising the four-person class.
The 2018 ITA Women’s Collegiate Tennis Hall of Fame induction ceremony will be held on Saturday, September 15, 2018, at the McCormack-Nagelsen Tennis Center at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia.
“The ITA is thrilled that this distinguished class will be entering the ITA Women’s Collegiate Tennis Hall of Fame,” said Timothy Russell, ITA Chief Executive Officer. “The four inductees showcase the very best of the breadth and depth of college tennis, an incredible array of talent, dedication, and commitment to our sport. I am looking forward to attending the 2018 induction ceremony in Williamsburg, and celebrating these four tremendous individuals.”
Every two years, the ITA Women’s Collegiate Hall of Fame enshrines exceptional players, coaches and contributors in women’s intercollegiate tennis.
Linda Gates – A 1985 graduate of Stanford University, is a three-time NCAA champion (1984 – doubles and 1985 – singles and doubles), and guided the Cardinal to the 1984 NCAA National Championship. She was a four-time ITA All-American and claimed the Broderick Award as the National Collegiate Player of the Year in 1985. Gates was a recipient of the ITA Arthur Ashe Leadership and Sportsmanship Award in 1984 and was elected to the Stanford Hall of Fame in 2001. In her professional tennis career, Gates reached the doubles quarterfinals at the Australian Open with 2016 ITA Women’s Collegiate Tennis Hall of Fame inductee, Alycia Moulton. Gates also advanced to the Round of 32 in singles at the US Open.
Patty Fendick-McCain – The 1991 Australian Open doubles champion, Fendick-McCain was collegiate teammates with fellow 2018 ITA Women’s Collegiate Tennis Hall of Fame inductee Gates. Fendick-McCain claimed the NCAA Division I National Singles Championship in 1986 and 1987. She guided the Cardinal to NCAA National Championships in 1984, 1986 and 1987. The 1987 Tennis Magazine Collegiate Player of the Year and 1987 ITA Arthur Ashe Leadership and Sportsmanship Award recipient, Fendick-McCain was named the NCAA Division I Most Outstanding Student-Athlete of the first 25 years of women’s tennis. Ranked as high as No. 4 in doubles and No. 19 in singles during her time on the WTA Tour. She transitioned to coaching at the collegiate level after her playing days, leading the charge at the University of Washington and Texas, respectively. Fendick-McCain was named the 2004 Wilson ITA National Coach of the Year. In 2016, she was named the Pac-12 Women’s Player of the Century.
Mary Ellen Grant (Gordon) – A 2004 Emory University graduate, Grant (Gordon) is the first player in NCAA history (man or woman and all divisions) to win NCAA National Doubles Championships all four years. She finished her collegiate career with eight NCAA Championships (four doubles titles, two singles titles and two team titles), making her the most decorated female tennis player in NCAA history in any division. She won the NCAA team, singles and doubles championships for two consecutive years, a feat unmatched by any female player in NCAA history in any division. Honored as the NCAA Division III Athlete of the Year (all sports included) by the Collegiate Women Sports Awards.
Dr. Ann Lebedeff – A former nationally-ranked junior and collegiate player, Lebedeff won numerous national doubles titles, including the U.S. Amateur Clay and Grass Courts Doubles titles in 1972, the 1974 USTA National Women’s Intercollegiate Doubles title, and the 1970 New Zealand Women’s Doubles Championships. She served as a coach at San Diego City College, the University of Arizona (1977-85) and Cal Poly Pomona (1989-98), where she also coached the men’s tennis team.
Lebedeff’s women’s teams at Cal Poly Pomona won back-to-back NCAA Division II national titles in 1992-93. In 1998, Lebedeff became Professor and Head Women’s Tennis Coach at Pomona and Pitzer Colleges, which share an athletics program. The Sagehens reached the NCAA Division III Quarterfinals seven times under Lebedeff (2001-03, 2007-10), including a semifinals appearance in 2008. In 2000 her doubles team of Sheree Schwartz and Megan Gould won the NCAA Division III Doubles title, while in 2008, Siobhan Finicane won the NCAA Division III Singles title.
A five-time Wilson/ITA Coach of the Year Award honoree (1990, 1992, 2001, 2008 and 2016), Lebedeff was named the Division II women’s tennis ITA/Wilson Coach of the Decade for the 1990’s. She was recognized by the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1999 with the Tennis Educational Merit Award, which is given to a man and woman who have made notable contributions in the field of tennis education, leadership and promotion of the game. In 2017, the ITA Ann Lebedeff Leadership Award was established and endowed by Billie Jean King.
The ITA Ann Lebedeff Leadership Award honors a recent college graduate who played college tennis and demonstrated excellence on and off the court, leadership on his or her team, as well as on his or her college campus and in his or her community.
About the ITA Women’s Collegiate Tennis Hall of Fame
The ITA Women’s Collegiate Tennis Hall of Fame is housed in the McCormack-Nagelsen Tennis Center at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. Millie West serves as curator and chairperson of the Hall of Fame, which began in 1995. The Hall of Fame and tennis center were made possible through a generous donation from the late Mark McCormack and Betsy Nagelsen. Every two years, the Hall of Fame enshrines exceptional players, coaches and contributors in women’s intercollegiate tennis. The ITA Hall of Fame Committee selects inductees from the following categories: (1) outstanding collegiate players; (2) players who attended college and later had a significant impact on women’s tennis; (3) outstanding collegiate coaches; and (4) individuals or corporations that played a major role in the development of women’s intercollegiate tennis.
About The ITA
The Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) is committed to serving college tennis and returning the leaders of tomorrow. As the governing body of college tennis, the ITA oversees men’s and women’s varsity tennis at NCAA Divisions I, II and III, NAIA and Junior/Community College divisions. The ITA administers a comprehensive awards and rankings program for men’s and women’s varsity players, coaches and teams in all divisions, providing recognition for their accomplishments on and off the court. For more information on the ITA, visit the ITA website at www.itatennis.com, like the ITA on Facebook or follow @ITA_Tennis on Twitter and Instagram.