RICHMOND, Va. – VCU Women's Tennis sophomore Paola Exposito Diaz-Delgado's historical season has officially come to an end. The Almeria, Spain native has earned All-American status after a remarkable run in the NCAA Individual Championships. She is the fifth Ram to receive such honor and the first to earn All-American status since Tatsiana Uvarova in 2006.
The Atlantic 10 Performer of the Year made an appearance in the Sweet 16, becoming only the fourth Ram in program history to reach such feat, before falling to the No. 1 seeded Estela Perez-Somarriba of Miami. In the first two rounds, she took down No. 27 Melissa Lord and No. 57 Stacey Fung, respectively. Diaz-Delgado is only the fourth Ram in program history to advance to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Individual Championships.
After a back-and-forth first set, Diaz-Delgado ran away with it by a score of 6-4. She fell in the second set by a score of 6-0 and fought extremely hard in the third set, only losing due to the tiebreaker.
Diaz-Delgado has filled her resume in her sophomore season. To go along with the Atlantic 10 Performer of the Year honors, she also earned All-Atlantic 10 First Team honors. In addition, she tabbed Atlantic 10 All-Academic Team honors, as well.
Diaz-Delgado has been nearly unstoppable this season. She logged a 38-4 record in singles play and is currently ranked 77th nationally by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association. Her 38 singles wins in 2018-19 rank second in school single-season only to Martina Nedelkova's school record of 48, set in 1997-98. The sophomore was 20-1 in dual matches during the spring, all on the No. 1 court, helping her notch three A-10 Player of the Week honors along the way.
Diaz-Delgado captured an ITA Atlantic Regional Singles Championship in October which secured an automatic bid into the Oracle ITA National Fall Championships. She and her doubles partner, Kanako Yano, also brought home the Brotherhood Doubles Crown at the Hokie Fall Invite.
No. 1 Estela Perez-Somarriba (Miami) def. No. 77 Paola Exposito Diaz-Delgado 4-6, 6-0, 7-6