SAINT LEO, Fla. – Saint Leo Director of Athletics Francis X. Reidy has named Martin Parkes the acting head coach for the men's tennis program and Sarah Summerfield the acting head coach for the women's tennis program, it was announced Saturday afternoon.
Both coaches, who have served as graduate assistant coaches for the programs since August of 2013, are taking over nationally ranked tennis teams who have visited the regional tournament three times each in the last six years.
"After much analysis we determined it was best for us to wait until May to name a permanent coach," said Reidy of the coaching appointments. "What made this decision easy was that we have two very talented coaches to step in and assume the roles of acting head coaches for each program."
Parkes, who volunteered with the Lions' programs for two years as an assistant coach prior to becoming a full-time graduate assistant, is not new to the coaching sphere. He brings over 15 years of coaching experience to the program, most recently serving as the Saddlebrook International Tennis Academy ITF Team head coach, where he worked with numerous top world ranking juniors. In addition, Parkes worked as a freelance performance coach with the Lawn Tennis Association National training center in Yorkshire (2003-06), at the Ilkley Tennis Club, the David Lloyd Leisure Club and the Heaton Tennis Club (1999-2006). He also spent two seasons (1999-2001) as the Leeds University women's tennis head coach.
Prior to his coaching career, Parkes competed at the Division I Campbell University where he was named captain and Most Valuable Player during his senior season.
Though new to Saint Leo, acting head women's coach Sarah Summerfield brings a wealth of knowledge to the tennis programs.
In addition to competing as a finalist at the Memphis Indoor Southern Open and being ranked 220nd in the USTA Top 500 National List, Summerfield competed at the Division I University of Wyoming where she was the winningest player for singles in Wyoming's state history. Summerfield also served as her team's number one singles player a team captain, and a S.A.A.C. representative for her athletic department. She has seen much success as the regional and national level of Division I athletics.
"Martin Parkes, who has been with us for three years, and Sarah Summerfield are both capable leaders who are ready for this challenge," added Reidy. "The players were very excited about the announcement of the coaching decisions and we are all looking forward to a great season this spring."
For more information on the men's and women's tennis programs, visit SaintLeoLions.com. Also, be sure to 'Like' the Lions on Facebook and 'Follow' the Lions on Twitter and Instagram.