Noel Named to USTA Collegiate Summer Team
Ten of the best college players in the country are part of the USTA Pro Circuit this summer, including Alexa Noel of the University of Iowa. She and the other athletes are part of the USTA Collegiate Summer Tennis Team - who compete at events this summer on the ATP Challenger and ITF World Tennis Tours.
“It feels amazing,” she said. “Being named to the USTA Collegiate team is an honor, but also earned. My support system and I have been working really hard and it meant a lot to me that USTA noticed and recognized that.”
The New Jersey native is excited to be part of this elite group, but is in the process of recovering from an ankle injury when she ran back from a drop shot.
“Unfortunately, I am unable to play many tournaments that this opportunity gave me due to my ankle injury that happened during my second round at NCAA’s,” she explained. “But the team consists of wildcard opportunities to pro events.”
Noel ended 2019 ranked No. 4 in the International Tennis Federation junior world rankings. In 2019, she advanced to the finals of Wimbledon Juniors.
Noel chose the University of Iowa because of her connections to the state: Her mom also attended Iowa, her dad played football at Coe College in Cedar Rapids and both of them are from Grinnell. Her favorite part of the sport is the individual aspect of tennis.
“When I was young I think I really appreciated the business of tennis. I was always running, hitting, planning etc. I started at a country club while tennis was one of the activities in a summer camp.”
During her freshman spring season with the Hawkeyes, Noel was All-American, earning the Big Ten’s automatic qualifier for the NCAA Championships and earned a 9-16 pre-seed to become the first All-American in program history. She was Big Ten Player of the Year, Big Ten Freshman of the Year, ITA Rookie of the Year with a 24-1 singles record at the No. 1 spot, and a 13-6 doubles record at the No. 1 spot.
She is studying Sports and Recreation Management at Iowa, and her ultimate goal is to become a professional tennis player.
“While in college, I’m focusing more on the processes rather than a number or a benchmark of where I have to be,” she said. “I hope to keep learning more about myself and implement those things into my upcoming endeavors.”
The rest of the women’s team includes: Sara Daavettila, UNC; Abbey Forbes, UCLA; Emma Navarro, Virginia; and Peyton Stearns, Texas. The men’s team includes: William Blumberg, North Carolina; Cannon Kingsley, Ohio State; Aleks Kovacevic, Illinois; John McNally, Ohio State; and Sam Riffice, Florida.