By Ben Mizera, William Woods (Mo.) Sports Information Director
FULTON, Mo.—The William Woods University Athletics Department is excited to announce that varsity men’s and women’s tennis will return to WWU, and competitive play will begin in the fall of 2015.
William Woods had women’s tennis teams from 1976 to 1999, but 2015 will be the inaugural season for men.
“We are eager to add two additional varsity sports to the William Woods athletics department,” said Director of Athletics Jason Vittone. “We are confident the sport of tennis is a great fit for our university and department. We are eager to start a search for our tennis coach and begin the recruiting process.”
One coach will be in charge of both the men’s and women’s tennis programs, starting in August 2014. During the 2014-15 academic year, the coach will recruit and the tennis courts will be resurfaced in preparation for the fall 2015 season.
In the American Midwest Conference (AMC), Missouri Baptist, Lindenwood-Belleville, St. Louis College of Pharmacy and Stephens College sponsor women’s teams. Of those, all but Stephens have men’s tennis teams.
“Currently the AMC competes in an unaffiliated grouping to qualify for the national tournament,” said Vittone. “The conference needs six member institutions to receive an automatic bid. With William Woods adding tennis, it gets our conference one step closer to that goal.”
WWU athletics is coming off an outstanding 2013-14 season, with the university collecting 10 AMC Championships; qualifying six teams and eight individuals for Nationals; achieving an athletic department grade-point average above a 3 point; and recognizing 27 NAIA Scholar-Athletes, eight NAIA Scholar-Teams, 109 AMC Academic All-Conference recipients, 83 All-AMC honorees and 19 NAIA All-Americans.