PHOTOS: ECCC Tennis Teams Finish Abbreviated Season with National Rankings


Although their seasons were cut short due to the Coronavirus, the East Central Community College men’s and women’s tennis teams both are included in the final Oracle/ITA JUCO Top 25 polls.

The ECCC men are ranked No. 20 in the most recent poll and third among Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges men’s teams.

Sophomore Chris Lawrance (York, Western Australia) is ranked No. 37 in the nation and No. 11 in Region III in singles. The doubles team of Lawrance and Isaac Santitto (Innisfail, Queensland, Australia) is ranked No. 24 in the nation and No. 7 in Region III, the highest ranked doubles team in the MACJC.

The East Central women are ranked No. 21 in the nation and also third among MACJC women’s teams. The Lady Warriors are ranked No. 7 in Region III.

Freshman Natalia Beltran (Bogota, Colombia) is ranked No. 19 in singles in Region III.

This is the second year in a row that both teams have received a final national ranking.

“I’m extremely proud of the efforts of a great group of young men and women this spring season,” said ECCC Head Tennis Coach Jay Pacelli. “We consistently demonstrated ‘Excellence with Class’ on and off the court. They are truly special teams that deserve to be among the best in the state and the nation. I’m privileged to be their coach!”

Members of the 2020 East Central Community College men’s tennis team and their respective high schools include (front row, from left) Isaac Santitto, Innisfail, Queensland, Australia; Rhy Elizar, Florence; Dylan Barnett, Newton County; and Jacob Gardner, Wayne County; and (back row, from left) Dominick Donaldson, Florence; Chris Lawrance, York, Western Australia; Chris Albert, Vicksburg, St. Aloysius; and Peyton Chaney, Newton County. (EC Photo)
Members of the 2020 East Central Community College women’s tennis team and their respective high schools include (front row, from left) Laila Sisson, Neshoba Central; Marla Graham, Newton County Academy; Natalia Beltran, Bogota Colombia; and Alejandra Vargas, Bogota, Colombia; and (back row, from left) Courtney Gill, Leake Academy; Kayla Baucum, Newton County; Josie Hurst, Newton County; and Ali Grace Walker, Newton County. (EC Photo)​