Thomas Named Coach of the Year, Phoenix Collects Postseason Awards
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (GreenBayPhoenix.com) - Green Bay men's tennis head coach Mark Thomas has been selected as the Horizon League Men's Tennis Coach of the Year, while players Craig Cox, Erik Finkenbrink and Paul Swanson each earned Second Team All-League honors, the conference office announced Thursday. All winners were recognized at the annual Horizon League Tennis Awards Banquet Thursday night in Indianapolis.
Thomas led the Phoenix to a 15-7 overall record, including an impressive 6-1 mark against conference opponents. Green Bay earned the No. 2 seed and a first round bye in the 2011 Horizon League Championships and will square off against Wright State on Friday morning in the semifinals in Indianapolis. The third-year head coach enters the conference tournament after guiding his team to victories in six of the last seven regular season matches.
Cox, a sophomore from Surrey, England, posted a 12-8 singles record on the year, including a 5-2 record in conference play. Cox played the majority of his singles matches in the No. 3 spot, finishing the season with a four-match winning streak which included Green Bay's lone victory against Marquette on April 10. The sophomore also went 14-7 in doubles action on the season, going 5-2 in conference play.
Finkenbrink played all but one singles match in the No. 1 spot for the Phoenix, facing the opponent's top player on a regular basis. Despite the stiff competition, the sophomore from Duelman, Germany finished the year with a winning singles record, earning 11 victories while dropping 10 decisions. In doubles play, Finkenbrink posted an unbeaten 7-0 Horizon League record along with teammate Josh Oothoudt (Minot, N.D.). The sophomore finished the regular season 17-5 overall in doubles matches.
Swanson finished the year with the team's best singles record at 16-6. The junior from Coon Rapids, Minn., split time at the No. 2 and No. 3 singles spots for the Phoenix, earning a 6-1 record in league play. Swanson also teamed up with Cox in doubles action to post an unbeaten 4-0 record against league teams, with his overall doubles record currently standing at 7-2. This marked the third consecutive season in which Swanson was named to the All-Horizon League Second Team.
The second-seeded Phoenix is set to face third-seeded Wright State Friday at 9:30 a.m. CT at North Central High School in Indianapolis in the semifinals of the 2011 Horizon League Championships. Green Bay is looking for its first conference title.