Fouchier and Budde Earn ITA Men’s Tennis Regional Awards Posted on May 31st, 2023 by

TEMPE, Ariz. — The Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) announced its 2023 Division III Men’s Regional Awards, and two Gusties earned recognition. Seniors Daniel Fouchier (Nootdorp, Netherlands) and Alex Budde (Menomonee Falls, Wis.) were both recognized for their excellence on the court and in their communities throughout the season. Fouchier was named the winner of the Arthur Ashe Leadership & Sportsmanship Award, while Budde was named ITA Most Improved Senior.

The Arthur Ashe Leadership & Sportsmanship Award recognizes student-athletes who have exhibited outstanding sportsmanship and leadership, as well as scholastic, extracurricular, and tennis achievements. Fouchier is the third Gustie in the last five years to earn the Central Region’s Arthur Ashe award, as Michael O’Neil garnered the honor in 2020 and Chase Johnson in 2019.

In his four years at Gustavus, Fouchier maintained a 3.86 grade point average while majoring in International Management and minoring in Computer Science. He has also been a key contributor to the team’s participation in the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life fundraising efforts for cancer research, and volunteers to put on tennis tournaments and mentor junior tennis players in his home country of the Netherlands.

Alex Budde was named as the Central Region’s Most Improved Senior, posting a singles record of 18-9 and a mark of 23-7 in the doubles. Playing primarily in the No. 5 singles spot, Budde clinched nine nationally-ranked victories. In the doubles with partner Gage Gohl, Budde earned a No. 6 NCAA Region VIII ranking. The duo put together an impressive season, getting wins over eight nationally-ranked opponents, including wins in four of the Gusties’ five post-season matches.

“We are so proud of Daniel and Alex,” said Head Coach Tommy Valentini. “These are well deserved and very meaningful honors for both of them. They both had fantastic seasons on the court. They provided stability and consistency in our lineup all year long and won so many huge matches that led to our group having a remarkable season.

“More importantly, they were pillars of leadership for us on and off the court – competing with heart and integrity, and mentoring their younger teammates and building trust in our approach. They stayed present at every turn, handled adversity with courage and resiliency throughout their careers, and took great care of their teammates as leaders.”

The ITA annually recognizes coaches and players for their excellence on the court and in their communities throughout the season. The Division III awards include: Wilson ITA Coach of the Year, ITA Assistant Coach of the Year, Arthur Ashe Leadership & Sportsmanship, ITA Rookie of the Year, ITA Most Improved Senior, ITA Senior Player of the Year, and ITA Community Service Award.

“We are thankful for them as players, but also as people. They’ve given so much to our program and they have extended the reach of it means to play for Gustavus while growing in so many ways during their time with us. I’m grateful they’ve been honored with these prestigious awards — it means the world to to them and to our program.”

The national award winners will be announced next Wednesday, June 7th.

ITA Release


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