the lines are still good

Follow the happenings of an animated college tennis coach and his teams in their pursuit of an NCAA National Tennis Championship. It is always the impressive trophy that is displayed for all to admire that gets the attention, but it is the journey to claiming that trophy, the relationships built, the people served and the memories created, that live forever...and what I hope you will find interesting...

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Ready For 2012...And Beyond!

Greetings and my best for a Happy, Healthy and Prosperous 2012!!!
I am really looking forward to a great 2012 and hope the same for all of my tennis family around the world. I hope all of you are ready to meet the challenges ahead and that great joy will result from your efforts. Remember, we never stop trying and we never give up.

Much love to you and your families and cherish all of the good that is around you.

Nuff said...

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas...

It has been quite a last four weeks for your old Coach Dano. However, I certainly want to take a few moments to wish all of you a very Merry CHRISTmas.

Life can take some crazy turns and nothing is guaranteed to any of us. Unfortunately, up until just now, the CHRISTmas season has sort of gotten away from me; passed me by without much thought, shopping, song, decorating, gift wrapping, worship and so forth. You see, without going into too much detail, my wife has been dealing with some serious health issues and all that goes with that. Although this is something that I am sadly pretty familiar with throughout my life, you never really get accustomed to it, especially during the holidays.

However, as I started to think about what has taken place these last four weeks, I realized that one aspect of the CHRISTmas season has been starring me right in the face. I have been blessed to have had family and friends close to me and helping me though the process. After all, is not what is under the tree that is important, it is those that surround it with you. A special thank you to all that have supported.

I have understandably not been around the college nor with the team recently and I certainly regret not being able to wish the players, both past and present, CHRISTmas joy and also safe travels as most have traveled back home to be with their families abroad. I look forward to having the chance to welcome my tennis family back to Bronxville and to the spring semester. I hope this comes to pass.

This year I have no "CHRISTmas list". I am not expecting to unwrap too many gifts either. However, I have been given other great gifts. I have the opportunity to affect so many other's lives on a daily basis. I also have been given the greatest gift of all and CHRISTmas celebrates just that. Well, truthfully though, I am asking and praying for one thing this year, it's just not something that is wrapped and unwrapped.

Merry CHRISTmas to all of you, my tennis family around the world. I hope that your holiday is filled with great joy. You will all be in my prayers.

Nuff said...

Saturday, December 10, 2011


Did we ever see this level of intensity from Tamas on the tennis court???

Nuff said...

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Some Of My Favorite Quotes...

Just in case you have missed these quotes that are posted in the right hand column of this blog, here are some of my favorite quotes for your enjoyment. I hope you find them as inspirational as I do.

"I came to realize that life lived to help others is the only one that matters, and that it is my duty, in return for the lavish life God has devolved upon me, to help others he has placed in my path." - Ben Stein

"You are never really playing an opponent. You are playing yourself, your own highest standards, and when you reach your limits, that is real joy." - Arthur Ashe

“One man practicing sportsmanship is far better than fifty preaching it.” - Knute Rockne

“If what you did yesterday seems big, you haven't done anything today.” - Lou Holtz

"The harder you work, the harder it is to surrender." - Vince Lombardi

"The fewer rules a coach has, the fewer rules there are for players to break." - John Madden

"Intelligence plus character - that is the goal of true education." - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr

"Success is a journey, not a destination." - Arthur Ashe

"Champions keep playing until they get it right." - Billie Jean King

"Do you know what my favorite part of the game is? The opportunity to play." - Mike Singletary

"Don't let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do." - John Wooden

"The day you take complete responsibility for yourself, the day you stop making any excuses, that's the day you start to the top." - O.J. Simpson

"It's what you learn after you know it all that counts." - John Wooden

"Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit." - Aristotle

Nuff said...

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving...

O God, great, good, gracious giver of all gifts, with grateful hearts we praise your care.
For the sheer joy of hearing things: good music, loud laughter, bird songs, family voices, spring rain, rippling brooks, dry leaves, squeaking snow, friendly greetings, fireplace logs, stimulating conversation, good jokes, new ideas, machinery noise, musical instruments, summer insects, baseball hits, stadium cheers; for church bells and for all the unforgettable moments our ears have heard for us…
For the sheer glory of seeing things: rainbows, water lilies, moonlight, pro football on TV, ancient sculpture, refrigerator art, the first spring flower, summer roses, autumn maples, winter landscapes, spiral galaxies, a triple play, the grace and beauty of the human form, living cells, friendly smiles, a good movie, fresh turned earth, skilled performances, deft needlework, ocean tides, church spires, sun-drenched stain glass windows, flowers that remind us of those we love; for all the unforgettable moments our eyes have seen for us…
For the sheer joy of feeling things: clean sheets, scratching and tickling, morning dew, the first frost, thawing breezes, good golf swings, swimming power, silk, sandpaper, relaxed muscles, hot baths, tennis aces, excitement, achievements, success, security, belonging, the grasp of a child’s hand and for all the unforgettable moments our touch has felt for us…
For the sheer delight of tasting things: roasted meats, summer strawberries, autumn pumpkin pies, birthday cakes, hot coffee, crisp salads, pretzels, aged cheese, potlucks, picnics, fresh baked goods, chocolate ice cream, dinner out, midnight snacks; for the redeeming and forgiving joy of your sacred feast and for all the forgotten moments our taste has savored…
For the sheer joy of smelling things: onions in the stew, hickory smoke, spring lilacs, summer air, autumn bonfires, winter fur, fresh-cut limes, rain soaked earth, hot bread, jelly in the making, pine trees, waxed wood, soft leather, incense, and the fragrance of the candles of your alter; for all the unforgettable moments our breathing discovers for us…
In all we do - whether in hearing, seeing, feeling, tasting, or smelling, we give thanks.
Wishing all of you out there, no matter where, a wonderful day of thanks.
Nuff said...

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Achillis Photo Update...

The affected side

The unaffected side

Recovery is progressing fairly well and close to schedule. However, clearly, Coach Neil has a ways to go before he makes a return to the court. Join me in praying for his full and speedy recovery.

Hope all is well with all of you out there in Clipperland.

Nuff said...

Friday, November 11, 2011

Fall 2011 Rankings Released...

Hi there once again Clipper faithful. The ITA has released its rankings and as usual, your Clippers are well represented both regionally and nationally. Click here for the NCAA D2 East Regional rankings and click here for the NCAA D2 National Rankings.

A new system of voting is now in place for the National Rankings and I have mixed feelings about this for sure. I am not completely certain that an accurate list will be published as many regional chairmen have very limited exposure to teams in other regions. However, I do like the fact that the lists are now truncated.

The ranking faithful have selected Concordia as the #4 team in the country. In addition, we have three singles players ranked nationally. Dani is listed as #4, David makes his debut at #14 and Tomasz is tabbed an impressive #38. We do not have any doubles teams ranked but will be working very hard on doubles over the winter to be represented there as well.

The team is working hard on conditioning and will be sure to be in great shape for the spring championship season. I will update you with the full spring schedule just as soon as it is complete. We will be doing some traveling once again so as to play the elite teams in the country and to best prepare for yet another run at the NCAA D2 National Championship.

Not too shabby!

Nuff said...

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Are You Ready Fellas???

Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but rather we have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.

- Aristotle

Saturday, October 29, 2011

CACC Women's Champions

Well the above title essentially speaks for itself. The CACC Championship stays in the trophy case here in Bronxville as the women won their third championship in as many years since joining this conference.

In the semifinal match, the ladies defeated Holy Family 5-0. Clearly, this is a one sided score but this was actually a long match. In fact, the match at #1 doubles was a two hour affair that we eventually won in a tiebreaker 9-8. The Holy Family team really came to play and was not going to simply let us have the match without working. Luckily, the ladies were well prepared and were hungry to move on to the finals versus Goldey Beacom College.

The final match was a bit more complicated for sure. The team was pretty confident as we had defeated GBC earlier in the season 6-3. However, GBC was without two of their starting players in their top six that day and thus would be stronger this time around. The coaching staff knew that the doubles would be vital today and we were really hoping for a 3-0 sweep. We were well aware that Goldey has some tough singles players and that it would be difficult to dominate there. Luck was on our side and again we achieved our goal of winning all three matches. Once again, the number #1 match was a marathon which lasted close to two hours that we again won in a tiebreaker 9-8. Big props to Yuliya and Clara for their toughness. With the 3-0 lead and the subsequent confidence, we split the next four singles matches and won the match 5-2.

I am really glad that the CACC Championships were played last weekend and not this weekend as it is easier to blow the leaves off of the courts than to shovel snow off of them. Who knows what Coach Stroble would say about that...

I am really proud of the ladies for what they accomplished this year. Clearly, they were placed in a tough position with the former coach abandoning the program after the start of the season and without notice. Also, it was not easy for them to play an entire season without any new players or any reserve players while also adjusting to a new coaching staff with a new philosophy. We really stressed the importance of the doubles and focused much of our practice time in that area. As a result, the team rewarded us with a cumulative 29-1 dual match record in doubles.

When I first was approached with the idea of getting involved with the women's team, I was a little uncertain of what would be to come. However, I thought that Coach Neil deserved a little help. I am really proud of what Neil did for this program and these young women, He stepped up and provided the team with the experience that they deserved. I really think that he did a remarkable job and should be considered for the regional coach of the year for his efforts.

I believe that the future is bright for the Clipper ladies as I have witnessed tremendous improvement with the players. There will also be help on the way with new members in January. It is not quite as easy to recruit for the women but I will apply painstaking effort to build this team into a nationally recognized program. I am not sure what my involvement will be beyond recruiting but let's see.

Nuff said...

Saturday, October 22, 2011

CACC Women's Championship...

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (Oct. 21, 2011) – Concordia College will be looking for its third consecutive Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) Women's Tennis Championship, as the 2011 tournament gets underway this weekend. The tournament will be hosted by the Clippers on Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 22-23. Concordia will face No. 4 Holy Family University Saturday at 10:00 am, while No. 2 Chestnut Hill College will meet No. 3 Goldey-Beacom College. Sunday's championship match is slated for noon.

The Clippers enter the tournament having never lost a conference match since joining the league three years ago, going 8-0 each season. The Clippers have won the last two CACC Tournament crowns, including a 5-0 victory over Goldey-Beacom en route to an appearance in the NCAA Division II Tournament Quarterfinals last season. Concordia will be led by junior Yuliya Plevako, who compiled a 7-1 record at both No. 1 singles and No. 1 doubles this season. Plevako was a first team All-Conference pick for the first time in her career after being selected to the second team the past two seasons. The Clippers also feature three second team All-Conference picks in seniors Clara Catanzano and Juliana Frey and junior Ana S.O Mendes. The trio combined to go 20-4 in singles play in the regular-season.

Chestnut Hill (13-2, 7-1 CACC) will be making its second appearance in the tournament and claimed the No. 2 spot. The Griffins fell to Concordia in last season's opening round as the No. 4 seed. Five Griffins posted at least ten individual victories this season. Atop the order is junior first team All-Conference performer, Nastia Shcherbakova, who went was 13-2 at number one singles. Her record was matched at number four singles by freshman Morgan Oechsle, who was an honorable mention All-CACC pick. Junior second team All-CACC selection, Maria Parapouras, led the team with a 14-1 record at number three singles. Sophomore Kelly Dennis claimed an 11-4 record at number two singles and was named to the All-CACC second team. Shcherbakova and Dennis teamed for an 11-4 standing at number one doubles.

Goldey-Beacom (6-2, 6-2 CACC) will be looking for its first-ever CACC title after falling to Concordia in the championship match two years in a row. The No. 3 seed Lightning will be led by the 2011 CACC Player and Rookie of the Year, freshman Stephanie Puentes, who went 7-1 at No. 1 singles. Four of her teammates were selected to the All-Conference team, including second teamers Melanie Bonomo and Marina Sales. Filipa Correia and Blanca Sancho were both Honorable Mention picks. Chestnut Hill and Goldey-Beacom will meet in the opening round Saturday at 1:00 pm, just five days after the Griffins pulled out an exciting 5-4 victory over the Lightning to conclude the regular-season.

Holy Family (9-6, 5-3 CACC) will serve as the fourth seed and will be led by juniors Juliana Victoria and Jin Querubin, who were both named to the All-Conference first team. This season, the duo teamed at number one doubles to register a perfect 8-0 record in conference competition. In three seasons together, they are 43-9 overall at No. 1 doubles. In singles action, Querubin finished conference play with a 7-1 record. She is currently 10-1 overall at second singles and 10-4 in all dual matches. Victoria posted a 6-2 mark in CACC action at the No. 1 spot. The Tigers have qualified for the CACC Tournament each year since its inception in 2005, and won titles in 2006 and 2007. Concordia and Holy Family met once this season in conference action, with the Clippers earning a 7-2 win back on Sept. 10.

The championship match is schedule for Sunday at noon at Concordia. The full tournament schedule is below.

2011 CACC Tennis Championships
Semi-Finals – Saturday, Oct. 22 (at Concordia)
#1 Concordia vs. #4 Holy Family – 10:00 am
#2 Chestnut Hill vs. #3 Goldey-Beacom – 1:00 pm

Saturday, Oct. 23 (at Concordia)
Championship Match
12:00 pm

Courtesy of the CACC

Nuff said...

Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Run Ends In The Final

I am sorry to report that we had a short day at the courts this morning as Dani lost handily to Lucas Jovita 6-0, 6-2. Dani simply could not find his opponents weakness today enough to get the job done. We certainly wish Lucas good luck in the superbowl later today and tomorrow. I enjoyed meeting up with Rollins coach Ron Bohrnstedt, who is a nice man, a smart coach and clearly a good recruiter. I look forward to perhaps seeing him again in the spring.

That being said, Dani did have a great run to the final and should be ranked #2 in the fall rankings released in November. This was certainly a confidence booster for Dani and also an eye-opener in terms of areas to improve for the future.

We have a late afternoon flight back to NY but we are actively trying to move up our departure time so as to arrive home earlier. Either way, I hope to get to the Hungry Owl for a good last Mobile meal before the flight.

Back to Bronxville. I look forward to seeing you all soon.

Nuff said...

Friday, October 14, 2011

Dani In The Final...

Good news to report folks. Dani Piludu has won again today 6-4, 6-3 defeating #2 seed and 15th ranked Hans Hach and has advanced to the Final of the ITA/NCAA D2 Singles National Championship. He will face off against Lucas Jovita of Rollins tomorrow at 8:30am.

Dani looked a bit more comfortable today and was very solid from the baseline. He really moved well and played tremendous defense. He was able to frustrate a very tough player in Hach which is no easy task. Dani's trip to the final is the third appearance for a Clipper in the last five years beginning with Alex Grubin's run to the championship in 2007. Andrey Boldarev was a finalist in 2009.

After the match we enjoyed a delicious lunch at The Brick Pit which is a smokehouse/BBQ establishment that some of you may have seen on the popular show Man vs. Food. Well today it was Coach Dan vs. Food as I cleaned my plate of pulled pork, coleslaw and baked beans in record time. Coach Neil really enjoyed his meal as well licking his plate clean. Dani had the ribs and should be fortified for his match tomorrow.

The real fun came after the meal as I asked to be let into the smokehouse and was granted the opportunity by the smokemaster to see "Big Red". We had so much fun and hope to continue our tour of local eateries with the Hungry Owl up next.

After a short snooze, we will be off to the hotel fitness room to work off the calories. I know that coach Neil will certainly be looking to release some stress. We stopped by the local Vitamin Shoppe and encountered a naturopathic doctor / iridologist who was offering a free consultation. An iridologist is someone who boasts an ability to determine what is wrong with you by examining your eyes. I insisted that Neil indulge the gentleman. The good doctor revealed that any and all of GNT's symptoms were a result of increased anxiety in life and that for only $180 he would prescribe the proper treatment for rectification and a return to good health. I also received a consultation and was told that I was a "brick" and that there was nothing he could do as I was so healthy. Clearly he is unable to get a reading of my cholesterol levels by looking at my eyes.

Well, here ends the essay. I look forward to more good eating and more winning on the court.

Nuff said...

Dani Wins

After a sluggish start, a bit of a slow middle, and a so-so finish, Dani wins his quarterfinal match 7-5, 6-1 over Vlad Catlan of Bluefield State. Dani seemed to be fighting his nerves a little out there and simply was not able to get comfortable on the court. As a result, we watched a serious pushing match. Now don't get me wrong, Dani can push his brains out as if we were on the slow red clay at Roland Garros but he will certainly need a more attacking style if he would like to further advance in the tournament. Next up today is Hans Hach of ACU, a player who broke the hearts of Clipper fans in Las Vegas last spring defeating Andrey Boldarev in three sets coming from 1-4 down in the third to win the dual match 5-4. Lets see if I can get Dani a little better warm up and some confidence this morning.

I will try to do a little better on Twitter today so as to keep you up to date.

Also, I look forward to a visit to the Brick Pit for lunch. I enjoyed the Wintzell's Oyster House last night and their fried pickles. It is nice to have some good meal choices here as we have received some ideas from Man vs. Food.

Nuff said...

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Sweet Home Alabama

Such an important event but a strange place to have it. Yes Clipper tennis fans, we have traveled in a small group "back down to Mobile" (Alabama) for the ITA National Small College tournament as Dani Piludu will represent the region in the singles draw.

We took off yesterday after an hour or so wait on the tarmac courtesy of our friends at Delta airlines and LaGuardia airport while on an airplane sporting a sub 60 degree temperature...not to mention the somewhat overly friendly male flight attendant. We did arrive safely in Atlanta and then on to Mobile after a short walk to change terminals. I wish I had some extra time in Atlanta as my old childhood friend is hospitalized in the Atlanta area with a recent cranky appendix removal. In any case, I hope he is on he mend.

After a quick repast at Panera Bread, it was off to the hotel to check in, change into tennis whites and then off to the event site just 10 minutes away. This is the first time we have traveled to this event with only a singles player which means that yours truly is responsible for hitting with Dani for his warm up. I have not been hitting so much and am not moving so swiftly around the court. I can only hope that Dani is finding the hitting at least somewhat beneficial. I may be the first person ever to consider seeking a trainer at the event even before it officially started.

I am up earlier than the others as usual but soon I will provide my own version of a wake-up call to the fellas so that we can ready ourselves and head down to the complimentary breakfast buffet. Dani's match time is 10:30am. I will certainly report the result as the match concludes or you can follow along with me on twitter.

Feel-free to send your well-wishes to Dani here in the comment section of this post or send a shout-out on Facebook. I know he would appreciate the support. I think he has a real shot to win this tournament but it will not be easy as there are several capable entrants.

Nuff said...

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Clippers Perform Well At Hofstra...

You really could not ask for a better performance from the boys this past weekend at the Hofstra Invitational. Click here for the results.

Playing improved doubles Dani and Geza took the championship defeating a team from Temple University in the final. The singles turned out to be more of a "Concordia Invitational" when all was said and done. In both "A" and "B" flights, all semifinalists were Clippers with Dani, Benas, David and Tomasz in the "A" and Mark, Andreas, Geza, and Ricardo in the "B". As a result, we did not play the remaining matches at the Hofstra site. However, playing through to the consolation championship match and winning the "B" draw was Jason Quintana.

Not a bad way to finish the team component to the fall season and certainly something positive to build on for the spring. Of course, we will head down to Mobile, Alabama Wednesday, 10/12 for the ITA National Small College Championships. Dani is the 3rd seed in the singles draw and has a solid chance to make a name for himself on the national scene. I will certainly keep you up to date but don't hesitate to follow along as well.

Nuff said...

Sunday, October 09, 2011

On-Court Behavior...

I've been thinking a lot lately about on-court tennis behavior. Seems like, much similar to regular everyday interaction, many folks, probably including myself, seem to have very colorful responses to anger. One duty that I do not enjoy as a coach is the enforcing of the ITA point-penalty system.

Tennis is certainly a fun game but can also be a very frustrating game. Seemingly, in addition, the better one gets, the more frustrating the game becomes. Who knows why...

However, that being said, it seems like everything in life is creating frustration. I mean, holy bacon lettuce and tomato, just the other day I encountered an angry motorist who showed me their middle finger as a result of their own driving error. I had some nerve not recklessly running a red light so that the finger-displayer in the car behind me could also do the same. Now, perhaps the road-rager was feverishly on his way to the hospital with his pregnant wife (although I didn't see anyone else in his car) or was trying to escape a chasing member of some organized crime faction or had his gas pedal accidentally stuck to the floor. In any case, I didn't deserve or earn the dreaded middle finger display I don't think. So why did I get the gesture?

I often wonder why it is so satisfying to launch a tennis racquet into a net or fence or to smash the frame onto the court surface breaking it into many smaller pieces or to shout curse words as loud as possible in a language of one's choice, often in more than one. The problem here is not simply that we play a "gentleman's game" but also that the ITA, which is the governing body of college tennis, as well as all other governing bodies, forbid such behavior. Nevertheless, the behavior continues for sure. As an aside, I must say however, that I still laugh out loud when I think about the time 20 years ago when I was playing a match at the somewhat pretentious Bronxville Field Club and my opponent and friend, George MacGovern, launched his Wilson Pro Staff out of the back courts and into a high branched tree, never to return to the ground. Who knows, it may still be in that tree serving as some some sort of nest for a tennis-loving squirrel or bird.

What makes me chuckle is how most players guilty of violating said code are always surprised and regularly upset to have the code of conduct enforced. What comes after enforcement, which is usually done reluctantly by most coaches or officials and especially me, is the list of justifications that is similar in length to a toddlers Christmas list:

1. "Everybody else is doing it."
2. "It slipped out of my hand."
3. "I have Tourette Syndrome."
4. "I said "ship" or "truck" or..."

Too bad we can't all just yell out the phrase "curse words" like former Clipper of the 1970's Paul Schulze who is also the father of former Clipper of the 2000's Josh Schulze. Incidentally, Josh didn't really take after his dad in this area.

I often remember instances while I was in school (which seemed like forever), when I would remark to a friend that a given teacher gave me a "B" or "D" or some other grade. In reality, 99% of the time, the teacher did not "give me" said grade but I received the grade that I achieved or earned. (I say 99% because there was that time when an absent-minded math teacher at a small Lutheran college in Bronxville, NY with a great tennis team, lost my independent study, take-home exam and failed me...which was later reversed by the way, but I digress...) This is quite the same as the enforcing of the tennis code of conduct. Players "earn" their penalty, coaches or officials don't "give" it to them.

Of course the best case scenario would be to avoid these inappropriate responses to frustration and anger. Much easier said than done though.

Truth be told, I was no angel on the court. My players would say that I still am not. I guess I just accept responsibility for things a little better these days. I hope that my current players figure this out a littler earlier than I did.

Nuff said...

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Too Hot For Polar Bears...

Your new look Clippers took to the courts yesterday (10/1), the first day of my birth month in case you were wondering, and defeated NCAA III #14 Bowdoin College 8-1 (click here for the boxscore). It was a decent start to the dual match slate but I am pretty sure that we will be greatly improved in the spring for the championship season.

Essentially, we are trying some different combinations for the doubles teams in an attempt to find 3 or even 4 cohesive units. In a relatively short period of time we have been able to improve our doubles significantly but we are not even close to where we need to be if we want to compete once again for the #1 regional ranking and also for the NCAA II Championship. Luckily, much can be accomplished between now and May. That being said, we were able to take 2 of the 3 doubles matches in yesterday's match.

We swept all 6 singles matches including the debuts of our 3 freshman starters. Specifically, I am really impressed with Mark Mozer. I think he will be a tremendous addition to our roster and a really tough out anywhere in the lineup. Of course, I have no rock solid idea of what the lineup will be in the spring and have a sneaking suspicion it will be nothing similar to what we sent out there versus Bowdoin.

I did get a chuckle out of something the Bowdoin coach said yesterday. Coach Smith, who is a first year coach for the Polar Bears, and seemingly a really nice young man, suggested to me that our team was "pretty down" this year, meaning that we were quite a bit weaker than last year. I can only assume that he expected to be beaten 9-0 rather than 8-1 and in more convincing fashion. I love these kind of remarks, remarks that I am careful not to make to other coaches, because they fuel my fire to improve the team. I am not sure exactly what we will be in the spring but as of right now this is my team and a team that I believe will be even better than last year. Mark it down!

We will travel to Hofstra University for the Hofstra Invitational next weekend featuring Temple University, NJIT and of course, host Hofstra. This experience will further provide the coaching staff with information about the new players and give our team a chance to practice the doubles. I hope that the Northeast weather allows the 3 day event to occur without interruption.

In any case, I am pleased to have the opportunity to share our happenings with you. I also suggest that you join this site and become a member/fan. You can sign up under the "FANS" heading down along the right hand side of this blog just above the NCAA logo.

For now, be well and...

Nuff said...

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Popular Demand...

Greetings to all my loyal readers out there in Clipperland. I certainly apologize for the lack of blogging and am humbled by the numerous requests by fans to start posting again immediately. Of course, I am sure that there are also plenty of folks out there hoping that I do not post ever again. Well in spite of those hopefully few and to please those remaining hungry for as much Coach Dano as possible, I write!

So, what is on my mind...or at least the less scary things that I am allowed to print for the public. It has certainly been an interesting beginning to the fall and Clipper tennis. First of all, in a bizarre turn of events, I have come out of short retirement to resume my duties with the men's team. I just could not let Coach T. struggle alone this fall given his difficult injury. I also realized that it was unfair to the four new players to have been recruited by me and then to bail on them. I just didn't feel comfortable with that. In addition, the women's coaches unfortunately abandoned the program just as the school year began. I don't really want to get into the long and the short of that situation but suffice to say that the program and the terrific young women were left in a bad way. As a result, Coach T. stepped up to the plate so as to provide the team with the great season that they deserve. I felt called to help him through this and joined him in the cause. Working with the ladies is quite different in many ways. However, I am enjoying it so far. They are really a nice group and are eager to learn. We may not be the favorite this year with only a roster of six, losing key players and no new recruits, but I have a feeling that that CACC Championship is not going to leave Bronxville that easily. Time will tell.

We are quite young on the men's side this fall and that presents a few challenges. Finding cohesive doubles units and forming a team identity hopefully will come with time. We really need the returning players to embrace the talented freshman and bring us together. I have tremendous confidence in the character of our upperclassmen and am looking forward to what our talent can be with solid effort on the practice courts. Things are already changing for the better.

On a different note, I stepped out onto the practice court today. I really enjoyed hitting and drilling and I can actually hit the ball pretty well when the ball is hit to me. Game situation...another story. I can still hold that old serve in doubles but yikes, not covering enough ground out there. Hence, no Ben and Jerry's for a while...
The gents will hit the match courts Saturday at 10am versus Bowdoin College, a nationally ranked NCAA D3 school. In a sense, this is a homecoming for Bronxville High School grad Peter Davis who is on the Bowdoin squad. We look forward to beating Peter wherever he plays...

Also making the "Wins List" is Andrey Boldarev who was able to get 5 ATP points last week qualifying at the Tashkent Challenger and thus obtaining an ATP world ranking of 1084. Way to go Andrey!

I hope that this has satisfied your yearnings and I promise to be more attentive to your reading needs going forward. If you are around on Saturday, stop by the courts and pay me a visit. I am always happy to see my peoples.

Be well. It is good to be back as there is still work to be done and some unfinished business.

Nuff said...

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Piludu Wins ITA Regional...

Dani Piludu won the ITA Eastern Regional this past weekend in Philadelphia, PA at the Ashe Tennis Center (click here for the draws). He defeated teammate David Tisserand in the final to advance to the National Small College Championships in Mobile, AL.

David scored the upset of the event defeating the #1 seed of Queens College Attila Toth in the semifinal round. David played some very solid tennis and showed the entire region that he is a force in singles.

Joining David and Dani in the semifinals was freshman Tomasz Olfans who lost to Piludu in the semis.

The competition in the region has become much stronger this year and that is a good thing. We certainly hope for some more competitive matches going forward.

We certainly have some work to do with the doubles play as we have many new players and are struggling to find chemistry.

In other news, both indoor and outdoor courts have been repainted and are playing nicely.

Next up will be a home match versus Bowdoin College on Saturday 10/1 with a 10am start time. We welcome former Bronxville Bronco Peter Davis home for the event. I look forward to seeing you there.

Nuff said...

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Frey Shoutout...

As you can see from the title picture of this blog, we are in the process of resurfacing both the indoor and outdoor courts at the Meyers Tennis Center here on campus. Club patrons as well as both college teams look forward to getting back on the courts starting next week barring any sort of pseudo-hurricane passing through the Bronxville area.

In addition, a fond greeting to the Frey family as they are once again visiting the Concordia community. It is always a pleasure to welcome player families and loyal blog followers to our world. Have a nice visit.

It has been fun bumping into so many old friends, teammates, colleagues, and former Clippers at the US Open tennis tournament these last few days. The post Irene weather has been terrific...I hope it continues.

Nuff said...

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Mozer Signs...

Mark Mozer of Brest, Belarus has signed a National Letter of Intent to join the Clippers for the 2011-2012 school year. Mark has spent the last few years living in Spain attending high school and sharpening his tennis game.

For a glimpse of Mark in action, click here.

Mark will bring an aggressive baseline game that should serve him well versus the competition he will face at the very top of NCAA D2. He will certainly be an asset to the team and we look forward to his contributions.

The fall semester begins September 5th and practice shortly thereafter. The first event on the schedule is the ITA East Regional held at the Ashe Tennis Center in Philadelphia, PA September 17th-19th.

Enjoy the rest of the summer.

Nuff said...

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

I Smell Cookies...

If you leave cookies in your tennis bag, they will be found...

Nuff said...

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Summer Greetings...

I hope that all of you are enjoying your "summer break". I certainly have been enjoying a bit of the small ball as I have been privileged to get out on the golf course several times with former Clippers Rohan Malhotra, Neel Roy, and Doug O'Connell. Unfortunately, my game has not rounded into form just yet but it is nice to have the opportunity to enjoy the out of doors and catch up with members of the Clipper nation.

In other news, Tomasz Olfans has joined us in Bronxville and has attended summer orientation. Tomasz is really going to be a factor in NCAA II and he is ready to contribute immediately.

Also, Coach Neil continues his recovery and has now been removed from his cast and placed into a less restrictive brace that allows for more movement and the introduction of physical therapy. The somewhat apprehensive patient will be sure to progress quickly and hopefully be weight bearing fully in the near future.

In other good news, all tennis coaches have taken and passed the NCAA Recruiting Exam for the 2011-2012 season. This is good to get this accomplished on the first trial.

With any luck the players are looking to improve on their season ending NCAA II National Ranking of #4. For this to happen there needs to be plenty of hard work including summer fitness and on court improvement. If the players have been and continue to do so, good things will happen for the team. If not, well...not good for anybody.

Share the good! Feel free to report any good things that are going on with you. Share your comments in the comment section of any blog posts, send me an email at, send me a tweet on twitter, or send me a facebook message.

Have a great August and be well.

Nuff said...

Thursday, July 14, 2011

ITA Scholar Athletes Announced...

The ITA (the governing body of college tennis) has announced their list of Scholar Athletes for the 2010-2011 academic year. We are very pleased and proud to have three members of the team mentioned among the elite student athletes in the country.

Congratulations to Felix Missal, Geza Bazula and Davis Tisserand. These three young men have distinguished themselves both on the court and in the classroom. A student athlete must achieve a minimum GPA of 3.5 on a 4.0 scale for the academic year to be honored.

Click here for the link to the press release.

Nuff said...

Friday, July 08, 2011

The Cast...

Have a nice look at the cast. If you are in the Bronxville area, stop on by the College Racquet Club and sign this, soon to be, piece of tennis memorabilia. Coach T. will be glad to see you.

Nuff said...

Monday, July 04, 2011

Happy Birthday Coach Neil...

As we celebrate our Independence here in the US, we must also celebrate the birthday of Coach Neil Tarangioli. Yes, he is indeed born of the 4th of July. I will not reveal his age here in the land of social media but he certainly looks younger than the number.

I certainly hope he is able to enjoy the day even though he is inconvenienced by his recent surgery and ambulation status. Incidentally, if you check out the "Some intriguing blogs to check out" gadget in the right hand gadget column of this blog, you will note the arrival of the "Achilles Tendon Injury Recovery Blog" in honor of Coach T.

All the best.

Nuff said...

Happy Independence Day...

Wishing all of you a very happy and safe Independence Day. What wonderful opportunities we all have as a result.

Nuff said...

Format Change???

Things could be changing...

There is a motion up before the NCAA D2 Tennis Committee at the moment which considers a format change with respect to match scoring. Essentially the motion suggests a move away from the 9 point scoring format to the 7 point format already used in NCAA D1.

For those of you not familiar with the scoring format currently used in D2: each team match consists of 9 tennis matches: 3 doubles matches and 6 singles matches. Each of these matches is worth 1 point. Thus, there are 3 doubles points and 6 singles points available. The NCAA D1 format has only 7 total points available as the singles matches are still worth 1 point each but the doubles play is only worth 1 total point for scoring. The doubles point is awarded to the team winning the majority of the 3 doubles matches.

This format change places a greater emphasis on the singles matches and ensures that the team winning any given dual match must win at least one half (3) of the singles contests. Also, this format change could also shorten the dual match somewhat. If a team has won the first 2 doubles matches finishing, the third match would be stopped as a majority has been achieved. I am not sure that this is a big deal though.

I was asked by another coach for my opinion about this rule change and I responded by saying that "it depends on how well we play doubles during any given season." However, truth be told, even though we have always played pretty solid doubles, I support such a format change. With the recent NCAA rule changes in D2, the incoming players are younger (I will avoid the obvious cheap shot at the schools who seem to have a special relationship with the NCAA) and have less experience. As a result, much practice time has to be devoted to doubles...probably more than singles. I feel that it is more important for the players to be hitting more balls and focusing on developing their skills, strategies, and fitness rather than spending more than half of a practice on teaching doubles on a day-to-day basis. If only 1 point is at stake for doubles, coaches could spend a little less time in that area. This, in my opinion, would not only make the players happy but would be better for their overall development.

This rule change, if approved, could be utilized as soon as next season.

What are your thoughts?

Nuff said...

Monday, June 27, 2011

Hey Bernie Tomic...

Gotta give a shout out to Bernie. I remember watching this guy beat the #4 seed in the Junior US Open, Fernando Romboli of Brazil back in 2007. He was 14 years old and maybe weighed 120lbs. We were surprised then that he won but I am not surprised to see him winning now.

Go Bernie.

Nuff said...

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Surgery Goes Well...

Good news! Surgery went well yesterday as the skilled Dr. Nicholas, who has served as team physician for the NY Jets and NY Islanders, was able to repair Coach Neil's Achilles tendon.

Of course, the surgery was the easy part. Now the hard road of rehabilitation begins. In general, there will be a period of non-weight bearing followed by a process of strengthening and stretching. All in all your coach should be mobile for the fall season and should be ready for 4.5 USTA tennis next summer.

In the meantime, you may see Neil zipping around on some sort of clipper blue scooter for more rapid ambulation.Join me in wishing Coach a full and speedy recovery.

Nuff said...

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


Everybody send your collective good thoughts to Clipperland as good old Coach Tarangioli goes in for his MRI exam today. Unfortunately, your Coach was injured last night during a USTA 4.5 match.

In only the fourth game of the match, your pal Neil hit his service return from the ad-court and like any good doubles player, began to follow his shot into the net. With that dynamic push off, he felt as though "someone hit me (him) in the back of my (his) lower leg with a tennis racquet".

That is never a good sign and usually means at least a significant strain of the calf/Achilles area. I certainly hope that a strain is all that this is and not a significant tear of the tendon or muscle which would likely require surgery and a fair amount of recovery time.

I will certainly keep you up to date with the process. In the meantime, do not hesitate to send off some well-wishes to Coach Neil. I know he would appreciate hearing from you.

Email Coach Neil:

Nuff said...

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day...

I would like to take this opportunity to wish all the fathers out there a very Happy Father's Day. These well-wishes go out especially to the fathers of our current players that have let us borrow their sons for our tennis purposes. Also, I would like to extend greetings to all former Clippers that are now fathers themselves. It is always a pleasure to see so many of you throughout the year and I hope you all enjoy your special day.

I am pretty sure that if my own father, and former coach of the Clippers, were still alive today, he would want to have a good meal and spend some time with his grandchildren. He would probably splurge and order himself his annual Manhattan cocktail consisting of whiskey, vermouth, bitters and a cherry. I am not sure he actually enjoyed this Manhattan or it was just something that he did once a year for a reason he never shared. I tasted this drink once and found it to taste like I would suppose gasoline would. No thanks.

Have a great day all.

Nuff said...

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Clippers Sign Majauskas

Hello again Clipper family folks,

I am pleased to announce that Benas Majauskas of Lithuania has signed a letter of intent to join the team as a student athlete this fall.

Benas has extensive international tennis experience and will be expected to play at a high level here in Bronxville. He was a charter member of a group of solid players from an emerging tennis nation including practice partner Ricardas Berankis. As a 17 year old, Benas achieved an ITF junior world ranking of 367 before choosing to concentrate on academics rather than traveling for tennis. Benas will also be an asset in doubles as he has won two futures events with a partner.

For a quick look at his court work see below:

Join me in welcoming Benas to the Concordia family and wish him nothing but success during his time here.

Nuff said...

Friday, June 10, 2011

Olfans Signs...

Greetings Clipper fans!

In some summer good news, Tomasz Olfans of Poland has signed a letter of intent to attend Concordia in the fall. Tomasz joins the team and brings an exciting game to New York that will help continue the strong tennis tradition that you all have become accustomed to.

Tomasz also has extensive ITF junior and men's experience that will serve him well versus the top competition he will face at the NCAA II level. He has been ranked as high as #548 in the ITF junior world rankings, with limited events, defeating several players inside the top 200.

For a glimpse his game see below:

We look forward to having Tomasz here in Bronxville and competing once again for an NCAA II National Championship. Join me in welcoming Tomasz.

Nuff said...

Sunday, June 05, 2011


I am happy to report that the fine folks at Dell have finally fixed my computer and it seems to be functioning normally at this point. I hope that this good fortune continues for many years after the warranty expires.

During the time shortly after our third semifinal loss in as many years to Barry, I thought quite a bit about why we have not been able to get the job done, advance to the final and have a chance to claim the championship. In addition, I have been hot on the recruiting trail to bring in new players to assist next season. There will be five new players this fall.

As I look back on my twelve years with the team, it is easy for me to become frustrated with the fact that I never achieved my goal. It is often hard to remember the many good times. I came across a quote that really makes a lot of sense:

"Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened."
- Anonymous

I encourage all of you to keep that smile and remember the good things. I will try hard to as well.

Nuff said...

Saturday, May 28, 2011


Hello and many apologies for the long lapse in posting. It was a whirlwind end to the season and to be honest, a slightly disappointing finish.

I know that many of you were following us live on and via twitter and for sure know by now, that we lost to Barry in the semifinals once again this year. This was our third loss in as many years to Barry at this point in the draw. However, this loss was a little different as we were ranked higher than Barry and had beaten them earlier in the season.

Oh well, what's done is done. No use crying over spilled milk. I had really hoped to bring home a National Championship for the Clipper-Nation and it looked to be even more possible this year. You have to give Barry credit. They played good tennis when it counted and stepped up in the moment. We did not. I will take the blame for that. I should have had the guys ready.

In any case, now we have a third semifinalist trophy in the case here in Bronxville and this is something that many other school would love to have. I guess this is not too shabby for the smallest NCAA participating school in the country.

We must say goodbye to Tamas and wish him well. Tamas has finished his fourth year of eligibility in tennis yet will be back at Concordia for his final semester academically. Rumor has it that he will be using his tremendous athletic ability for the cross country team in the fall. Best of luck. Tamas has been someone that could always be counted on and started to play the role of leader late in the season. It will be difficult for the team to replace him.

Now on to the summer break. One that is much needed by me. I look forward to some nicer weather, some time to think and also to prepare for the future. I promise you all that there will be some good players coming to help the cause in the fall. Most importantly, the returning players need to get better. We need to improve our collective game if we are to continue the winning ways. If we want to achieve our ultimate goal, we need to do more. It is not enough to simply set goals, we have to do what it takes to get the job done. Talk is cheap.

For now, nuff said...

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Tuesday AM...

Starting the day. A bit of a late night watching the NBA in triple overtime. It's going to be another hot one out there as we hit the practice court at 10:30am. Looking forward to the breakfast at the hotel.

I hope Coach T. wakes up feeling better as his voice is gone and a bit under the weather. I tried to keep the room temperature above 60 degrees for him last night.

At least we had a quiet room as we had to move due to a very noisy dog next door.

Catch you all later. Off to the omelet station.

Nuff said...

Monday, May 09, 2011

The Trip Begins...

Today is the day. The final ride begins...

Up and out early this morning as we meet at the college at 8:45am to depart for the airport. We are leaving from HPN - White Plains. This is usually quite convenient as it is closest to Bronxville with no traffic and no bridge to cross. However, we will be taking a school bus as both men's and women's teams will be traveling together. School buses are not allowed on the highway that takes us to HPN so it is the back road route for us.

11:20 departure to Orlando scheduled. I hope to have better luck at this regional airport than I did at Florence, SC.

We should arrive in Orlando at about 2pm and get settled. Shortly after, we will hit the practice courts. The forecast is for very hot weather (95 degrees plus) so it will take some adjusting. We have no had the most balmy spring here in NY for sure.

Check back throughout the day for some updates and wish us luck.

Shower time.

Nuff said...

Saturday, May 07, 2011

I Don't Know...

I just don't know if the players realize how hard it is to just flip the switch when you need to. We need some good preparation and we need it, well, yesterday! Looking forward to some much needed solid practice time. These matches will not win themselves.

Nuff said...