Matthew Townes, Coach of the Year

Dominique Hunter

Head coach for the Morgan State University men and women tennis team won the Mid-eastern Athletic Conference coach of the year award.

Matthew Townes led both teams and exceeded expectations in the Mid-eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC).

Though the women’s team did not start off strong they finished the season winning 11 out of 14 games which were concluded by winning the conference championship, the program’s second title and first since 1994.

In addition, Townes was very excited to win the championship during MEAC player of the year, Danielle Thompson final season. He was very pleased with her great leadership during the season which he believed made his job easier.

“When your upperclassmen can take control of the team as far as their work ethic and how they approach our business it just makes my job easier because I can just focus on attendance,” Townes said.

Townes was not surprised when he received the news he won coach of the year, however that did not make winning the award any less special. Townes, won numerous other words this season, but he would give it all back to win a championship.

“I’m humbled and honored that I won coach of the year, but it’s not the end goal,” said  Townes. “I don’t do it for personal recognition. I do it so we can win championships.”

The men’s team, however, did not win the championship this year. But, they did post an exceptional record of 14-5 and Townes believed the team has a lot of potential.

“I’m excited about the season because we had four freshmen on the team and we have a very young team coming back and I’m excited about it,” coach Townes said. “I think within the next one or two years we should win the championship on the men’s side too.”

Though, the men’s team is young, Townes admired how the young athletes performed every single day, came to practice and were extremely professional about their work ethic.

Throughout the season with a young, Townes urged both teams not to panic and stay patient when games were not going their way.

“Keeping your composure was something I reiterated all year,” he said.

Movement during games were also a key point he relayed to all of his athletes.

“As a coach that is one of my main focuses on all my athletes. Positioning, balance, and movement. So, throughout the year players hear me talk about that day in and day out,” Townes said.

Tennis does not get as much recognition as sports such as basketball and football but  Townes believed, if the teams can keep winning they will get the same recognition as the other teams.

But, he is not worried as much about recognition as he is of winning championships and setting records.

“Recognition is one thing but we are just trying to set records and do things for ourselves so that at the end of the day when you look back at history you see us,”  Townes said. “We are trying to win championships and we know that will speak for ourselves.”

Next season for the men’s team , he hopes to get to the next level and win the championship and continue winning non-conference games.

For the women’s team, he hopes to win back to back championships and feels like the new teammates coming this fall will really boost their chances. Townes wants to win more games earlier in the season, so it can be easier for them going into to the championship game. In addition, he wants to win the division title.

“I haven’t won a division title on the women’s side since I got hired and I would really like to do that,” he said.

Townes also would like to win a championship for both teams in the same year and be ranked in the region.

“I would like for both men and women to have a regional ranking,” said Townes. “That takes a little more from where we are right now. We have to beat a lot of non-conference schools and ranked in conference schools, but I think it’s possible.”