Loretto, PA -- Stefan Groot and Washi Gervais have signed to become the second and third incoming members of the Saint Francis University men's tennis team, head coach Paul Tobin announced recently. The pair joins Kevin Pijper, who committed to the Red Flash in November.
“We are excited to welcome Washi and Stefan to our team,” said Tobin, who enters his third season in Loretto in 2012-13. “Washi should make a direct contribution to our program from the minute he steps on our courts. He has the right attitude and the talent to help propel this team to the next level. We are very excited that Washi is a part of our team and helping him achieve all that he wants.”
“Stefan is going to make a direct contribution to our tennis program,” Tobin continued. “He has been a top junior player in the Netherlands with a lot of match experience. He's going to fit in very well with the rest of our players.”
Gervais began playing tennis at the age of 13 and has trained at the prominent Ménard-Girardin Tennis Academy in Laval, Quebec for the last three years. He was a top-ranked U-18 junior player, reaching as high as seventh in Québec and 25th in Canada. Gervais advanced to the third round of the Quebec Championship and played several ITF grade 3, 4 and 5 opponents. His best result was reaching the second round of an ITF Level 5 main draw. Based on his outstanding 2011-12 campaign, Gervais was invited to compete in the prestigious Junior Canadian Championship.
“I am happy to have the opportunity to get a strong education at Saint Francis in political science,” said Gervais. “Moreover, I believe that SFU's values suit my philosophy. I am really excited about joining the Red Flash tennis team. I love the team's chemistry and I am looking forward to competing and playing alongside such talented players.”
Groot first took up a racquet at age six and began training in Warmond, Sassenheim, Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Alphen aan den Rijn. He currently trains around 15 hours a week. Groot reached a national ranking of 30th in his juniors and is currently ranked top 300 in the Netherlands for 18U. He has experience playing ITF tournaments in Hillegom and Enschede and finished third in the Holland National Championships.
“I'm really looking forward to attending Saint Francis,” said Groot. “It's an excellent school and I am excited to start my studies as soon as possible. I've heard much about SFU's tennis reputation – it should be challenging and I can't wait to be a part of the team.”