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McCallie Blue Tornados Make their Mark on The River City

Jeff Clark '91, left, joins Eric Voges '81 in building the next generation of success in McCallie Tennis.

Jeff Clark '91, left, joins Eric Voges '81 in building the next generation of success in McCallie Tennis.

 

McCallie school in Chattanooga's tennis program is making waves in the River City. First, their Stang-Voges Tennis Center is one of 12 winners in the 35th annual USTA Facility Awards program, which recognizes excellence in the construction and/or renovation of tennis facilities throughout the country. Now, the highly accomplished former Blue Tornado, Jeff Clark, will be the varsity coach and the current coach Eric Voges, is swithcing roles to become the Director of Tennis Operations.

The McCallie School Strang-Voges Tennis Center will be honored for Eductional Institutions at the USTA Semi-annual Meeting at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in New York City on September 1st at an Awards luncheon. The tennis center boasts six indoor courts, each with spectator seating. The facility has hosted USTA Tournaments, JTT, League play, and college and high school matches. With four certified tennis professionals on staff, they are able to offer instruction, camps, senior clinics, 10 and Under tennis and adult beginning classes. Amenities include offices, a kitchen, a varsity locker room with showers, a team room with a ping pong table and flat screen television, a lobby with trophy case, pro shop, and restrooms and showers for visitors. Since the tennis center opened, more than 90 kids in middle school and high school have tried out for the tennis team each year.

“Great tennis facilities like the McCallie School Strang-Voges Tennis Center help us to grow the game at the grass-roots level, and we are proud to recognize them for their ongoing impact on the sport of tennis,” said Kurt Kamperman, Chief Executive, Community Tennis, USTA. “McCallie School Strang-Voges Tennis Center has embraced many of our tennis initiatives

“After completion of the new Tennis Center, Coach Voges realized pretty quickly the workload was stretching him to the point where he couldn’t do everything that needed to be done at the high level he expects of himself and his players,” Assistant Headmaster Kenny Sholl said. “That he would come forward with the idea of taking on this new role not only shows what a savvy tennis professional he is — it shows his willingness to do whatever it takes to make McCallie tennis the best it can be.

In his role as Director of Tennis Operations, Coach Voges will oversee and coordinate clinics, tournaments, lessons and programs open to the broader community, as well as assist Clark in the afternoons with the varsity team. Voges’ new role will help maximize the use of the Strang Voges Tennis Center and the rest of the program’s outstanding facilities.

Coach Clark was a former player at McCallie and Vanderbilt. Clark later became the assistant men's coach at Ole Miss, and most recently the head men's coach at UTC since 2008. "His character is impeccable, and in a sense, we are simply adding a second Eric Voges" says Dean of Athletics Jeff Romero.

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