The 2021 Division II National Team Indoor Sportsmanship Awards were announced on Friday. The awards were voted on by all head coaches and the officials at their respective tournaments.
Division II Men Sportsmanship Award | Midwestern State University
In their second straight year of hosting the DII Men National Team Indoor Championship, the Midwestern State men’s team was named the Men’s Sportsmanship Award winner.
Led by Head Coach Scott Linn, the Mustangs exemplified gracious competitors on and off the court. Linn and his players would always congratulate the opposing coach and players on their win and wish them luck further into the championship. Additionally, the MSU program had the utmost respect for the ITA Officials. They would thank officials for their work and wish them the best for their remaining matches. The Mustangs showed a commitment to treating everyone they encountered with with kindness.
Despite dropping their three matches during the Championship, the Mustangs saw bright spots from individual players. In MSU’s match with Concordia Irvine, senior Angel Palacios stepped up at No. 3 singles and downed Mike Jansen in straight sets. In the Mustangs’ opening round match with eventual champions Columbus State, Martinez-Roca took the first set over ITA Singles All-American Regalado and was just starting the third set when the match was clinched.
Midwestern State started their season with DII Indoors — an excellent litmus test to see where they are at. During the tournament they faced No. 1 Columbus State, No. 9 Flagler, and No. 14 Concordina Irvine. Now with some competition under their belt, the Mustangs will head into the rest of their season.
Division II Women Sportsmanship Award | Angelo State University
This year the Angelo State Belles competed in the Division II Women’s National Team Indoor Championship for the first time and they walked away with the Women’s Sportsmanship Award.
Coach Bizot and his team practiced sportsmanship throughout their championship run. The Belles worked to uphold the integrity of the matches — respecting officials, making fair line calls. Additionally, ASU remained respectful and kind regardless of the match outcome. In their heartbreaking defeat to Southwest Baptist, their gracious attitudes shined through despite the loss.
The Belles made an immediate statement at Indoors by upsetting No. 3 seed West Florida in the opening round. Angelo State moved onto the semifinals – and recorded their first top 10 win in program history – after they edged out the Argos in a 4-3 match. In the semifinals, the score did not go their way and they dropped a close one to Southwest Baptist. Despite falling short of the championship match, the Belles had a stellar run in their first Indoors appearance.
The Belles are now 3-3 on the season with three matches against the top programs in the country under their belt. During the tournament they faced No. 7 West Florida, No. 8 Central Oklahoma, and No. 14 Southwest Baptist.
Previous winners of the DII Indoors Sportsmanship Award are Hawaii Pacific Men (2020) and Hawaii Pacific Women (2020).