MARTIN, Tenn. – When Dennis Taylor, head tennis coach at The University of Tennessee at Martin, returned from the Ohio Valley Conference Tournament last weekend, he came home to find a National Letter of Intent on his desk signed by Jessica Silva, a top amateur player out of Culford School in Suffolk, England.

“Jessica will be a strong addition to an already powerful Skyhawk team,” Taylor said. “She is a very aggressive baseline player who is also very talented at the net. She is a high-energy, dynamic player that is extremely quick around the court. She will strengthen our team in both singles and doubles.”

A Winnipeg native, Silva was a top-20 player in the 16-and-under age group in Canada before moving to Portugal in 2009. While in Portugal, she developed into a top-10 junior player.

Currently attending Culford School, Silva is part of a national powerhouse program. She was a part of Culford’s 2010 national championship team, as the team won 4-2 over Huddersfield-based Greenhead College. After the match was tied, Silva and teammate Tonia Nelskamp earned victories to clinch the title.

The AEGON Team Tennis Schools Senior Students Finals involved 250 schools from across England and was organized by the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) and were held at the prestigious Bolton Arena. In reward for winning the tournament, Silva and her teammates earned an exclusive training session with Judy Murray, a nationally-renowned coach and mother of Andy Murray, the world’s No. 3 ranked player.

Silva also has earned high marks in the classroom throughout her highly-decorated prep career.

“Jessica is not only a top tennis player but is exceptionally strong academically as well – which is one of the main criteria for our team,” Taylor said. “Her tennis and academic potential is through the roof.”

Silva will join a Skyhawk program that captured its fifth OVC title this season, and returns all seven letterwinners.

Source: https://www.utmsports.com/fullstory.cfm?id=5150

Bio: https://www.utmsports.com/athlete.cfm?id=2053&sport=Women’s%20Tennis