Women'Tyler Thomson has been named as the fifth head coach in the history of University of Minnesota women's tennis, Women's Athletic Director Chris Voelz announced today. Thomson was an assistant coach at the College of William and Mary prior to his arrival at Minnesota.
"We believe that hiring Tyler Thomson does far more then fill an open position, it most importantly shapes the future of the Gopher Women's Tennis," Voelz said. "We are thrilled to have his experience, expertise, and energy to lead us to a new era of achievements."
As an assistant coach at William and Mary since 1997, Thomson has assisted in three NCAA Team Tournament berths in 1998, 1999 and 2000, including a quarterfinal finish in 1998. Thomson assisted three All-Americans, six ITA Scholar-Athlete All-Americans and 10 ITA nationally-ranked players. Among individual honors, Thomson received the ITA East Region's assistant coach of the year in 1999.
Thomson, a Bismarck, N.D. native, earned All-America honors in 1989 as a senior at Bismarck High School, where he played No. 1 singles and doubles. Thomson went on to play at the University of Montana, where he was a four-year starter in doubles, an eventual singles starter and team captain for the Grizzlies. A graduate of the University of Montana, Thomson earned a bachelor of arts degree in English literature. In 1996, Thomson was named the assistant men's and women's tennis coach at Allegheny College in Meadville, Pa., while also teaching two physical education courses at the school.
"I am extremely excited about the opportunity to work for the University of Minnesota and I can't wait to get started," Thomson said. "As the interview process progressed, it became clear to me that the ideals and philosophies of the administration mirrored thost that I deem important. Furthermore, the support of the women's athletic department as a whole is incredibly impressive. I firmly believe that the ingredients for success are all in place."
The Gophers have 10 returners on the team, including All Big Ten selection sophomore Valerie Vladea (Kitchener, Ont./Burlington Central). The women's tennis team is in the middle of fall competition, where they have competed in three fall events. Next action for the Gophers will be the ITA Regional Qualifiers, Oct. 27-30.