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Saturday, Feb. 18, 2012 11:54 a.m.

Men’s tennis freshman earns national ranking

Freshman Francisco Dias, shown here during the 2011 tournament season, earned A-10 rookie honors Monday. | Hatchet File Photo

Men’s tennis freshman Francisco Dias was ranked the No. 64 player in NCAA Division I by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association yesterday, the first Colonial to earn a top-100 ITA singles ranking since Yann Auzoux landed the No. 85 spot in 1993.

The accolade follows Dias’ two Atlantic 10 Rookie Performer of the Week awards. The most recent came after he posted a victory over No. 29 Vasko Mladenov of St. John’s last week, part of his No. 1 singles record of 7-2 on this season’s competition so far.

“Francisco shows great poise and tremendous power for a freshman,” men’s tennis head coach Greg Munoz said. “He is learning and adapting to the college system, and he has developed into a great team player.”

The Lisbon, Portugal native started the 2011-12 season as the ITA’s 10th-rated newcomer. Dias also holds the No. 12 spot on the ITA’s Jan. 12 Atlantic Region ranking.