Morelli and Smith Named USC Credit Union Student-Athlete of the Week

    Matteo Morelli

    Sept. 15, 2014

    LOS ANGELES - USC men's water polo player Matteo Morelli and women's tennis player Gabby Smith were each named USC's Student-Athletes of the Week for the week of Sept. 8-14, on Monday, Sept. 15.

    Morelli showcased a dominating performance over the weekend at the Inland Empire Classic. In the Trojans' first match against Chapman, Morelli led the high-scoring game with five goals of his own, almost matching the total amount of goals scored by the whole Chapman team. The true freshman finished the weekend with a four-goal performance against No. 18-ranked Air Force.

    Morelli finished with 14 goals over four games as the high-powered Trojans outscored their opponents 90-21 as a team. The Men of Troy travel to Berkeley, Calif. on Sept. 20 to compete in the NorCal Tournament.

    The other USC men's student-athlete of the week nominee was Sean Crocker (golf).

    Gabby Smith claimed her first career victory in dramatic fashion at the Baylor Under Armour Kick-Off Tournament. At singles, Smith faced No. 112-ranked player Neda Koprcina (Texas). After losing the first set 4-6, Smith came back to win the second set 6-3, and ultimately won the third set, 7-6, in a thrilling tie-breaker.

    The freshman carried her momentum over into day two of the tournament, completing a dominating performance in a 6-0, 6-1 win. Smith was challenged with another showdown against a ranked opponent in day three at Baylor. Her persistent play continued as she beat No. 81-ranked Ratnika Batra (Texas) 6-4, 6-4. Overall, Smith kicked off her Trojan campaign with a 3-0 start over the weekend. The Women of Troy will compete in Pacific Palisades, Calif. at the ITA All-American Championships on Sept. 27.

    The other USC women's student-athlete of the week nominee was Samantha Bricio (volleyball).

    The USC Credit Union Student-Athletes of the Week are voted on by the student assistants and Sports Information Directors of the USC Sports Information Office. Nominations are compiled and distributed for voting by Alec Koondel. Student assistant voters include Charlotte Adlam, Taiu Kunimoto, Nikki Borchard, Andrew McKagan, Eike Daube, Tera Novy, Carlene Jones, Max Schwartz, Gaby Smotrys, Aubrey Kragen, and intern Katie Ryan.