July 18, 2014
MINNEAPOLIS - After holding the volunteer assistant coach position for the Minnesota women's tennis team in 2011-12 and serving as the squad's full-time assistant coach for two years in 2012-13 and 2013-14, Whitney Taney has been promoted to the Golden Gophers' associate head coach, head coach Chuck Merzbacher announced Friday.
"As a head coach and alum of the University of Minnesota, I believe it is important that we reward and promote talented employees like Whitney," Merzbacher said of the promotion. "She stands for everything good in athletics, she is a great teacher of the game, and she is well respected in the Twin Cities tennis community. This is well-deserved."
Taney, a native of Edina, Minn., was elevated to full-time assistant status after her first year with the team, a season in which the Gophers finished 16-9. After the team went 10-15 in 2012-13, Taney and the Gophers showed marked improvement in 2013-14, posting their highest win total since 2003 with a 17-9 ledger. Minnesota also went 6-5 in Big Ten play, doubling its conference win total from the previous season.
"I am very honored to be promoted to associate head coach," said Taney. "I look forward to the opportunity to continue working with Coach Merzbacher and this great group of players and bring our program to the next level. I feel our future is extremely bright and we are heading in the right direction."
Before joining the Gophers, Taney was a standout tennis player at Michigan from 2008-11. She left Michigan with the Wolverines' record for most career doubles victories with 114 and was a two-time ITA Scholar-Athlete. Additionally, she was an NCAA Doubles Tournament qualifier in 2010 and was named All-Big Ten in 2008, 2010 and 2011.
Prior to her time in Ann Arbor, Taney played high school tennis at Edina where she was a six-year letterwinner. She went undefeated during her prep career, finishing with a 166-0 record, going 150-0 singles and 16-0 in doubles. She lost just two sets in high school and won five individual state championships, claiming three in singles and two in doubles. At Edina, she was a two-time All-American and was the 2007 National High School Coaches Association Player of the Year.
"It is our goal here to build something that will last," said Merzbacher. "Whitney has rolled up her sleeves and worked very hard to help build up this program. She is committed to getting it done, and we have plenty work to do."
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