IRVING, Texas - The Aggie dynamic duo of freshman Jackson Withrow and sophomore Junior Ore were tabbed first-team All-Big 12 in a vote of the league coaches and Texas A&M singles standout Alexis Klegou was also named to the first-team squad, the Big 12 Office announced today.
"We are very proud of Gou (Klegou) being named All-Big 12 and he has worked very hard this season and this honor is well deserved," Aggie head coach Steve Denton said. "We are also very excited for Junior (Ore) and Jackson (Withrow). They had a very solid year at No. 1 doubles. They are one of the most exciting young doubles teams in the country and they have great chemistry. Bob (McKinley) and I are very pleased with how far they have come as a team in a short period of time. We are very happy for them to receive this prestigious honor."
Klegou, a senior co-captain from Dunkerque, France, on the Aggie squad, has played mainly at No. 1 singles this year and was a unanimous selection to the elite squad this spring. One of the most athletic players to ever don the Maroon and White, Klegou is currently ranked No. 34 in singles and has been invited to compete in the 2012 NCAA Singles Championships held at the University of Georgia, May 23-28. Klegou was one of 32 singles players to be selected to the 2011 USTA/ITA National Indoor Championships in Flushing, New York, last fall. At the ITA All-American Championships held in Tulsa, Klegou defeated the country's No. 3-ranked player on his way to reaching the quarterfinals of that tournament. As a junior, Klegou earned Big 12 Champion honors at No. 4 singles and had a 15-match winning streak to close out his junior campaign including victories to clinch the Aggie's 2011 Big 12 Championship as well as the second-round match against LSU which allowed the Aggies to reach the Round of 16 at Stanford.
Withrow, a freshman from Omaha, Nebraska, is no stranger to winning as he and his summer doubles partner of Jack Sock combined to win the USTA Junior National Championship in doubles in 2011 at Kalamazoo, Michigan. A three-time state champion at Burke High School in Omaha, Withrow was rated a Top 10 recruit in the nation and in addition to playing No. 1 doubles with Ore, has contributed in the singles lineup as well.
Ore, a sophomore from Gaithersburg, Maryland, was a key doubles performer for the Aggies last year playing with senior Alexey Grigorov and has developed excellent chemistry with Withrow at No. 1 doubles. Ore was a Top 10 recruit and has played at the top of the A&M lineup in singles in addition to his outstanding play at No. 1 doubles.
The Aggies, 13-14 on the year, will advance to the NCAA Championships this weekend to face first-round opponent South Carolina, 15-11, on Saturday, May 12, in Los Angeles. Also at the site is host and No. 1-ranked USC, 27-1, along with Fairfield, 16-4, in the other first-round matchup. First serve is set for 11 a.m. central. This marks the 20th overall appearance for the Aggie men's tennis team to reach the NCAA Championships and the 19th consecutive year for A&M to make the field.