Cary, N.C. - North Carolina Wesleyan head men's and women's tennis coach Dominic Modise saw his Battlng Bishop tenure come to an official end on Thursday afternoon at the 2012 NCAA Division III Men's Tennis Championships in Cary. Having established NCWC tennis on the national scene over the past five seasons, Modise will now take the helm of the women's program at the University of Southern Mississippi, an NCAA Division I affiliate and member of Conference USA.
Modise had hoped for one final Bishop run this weekend, and things looked promising when sophomore Rinat Khussainov opened play with a straight-set win over Warren Wood of Claremont Mudd-Scripps (6-2, 6-4). Unfortunately, Khussainov fell in the round of 16 to Washington-St. Louis' Adam Putterman (7-5, 6-3).
In doubles action, sophomore Robert Kjellberg and senor Alexey Rumyantsev made an unexpected early exit when they fell to the Bates College duo of Rob Crampton and Matt Bettles (6-2, 6-4), officially bringing the 2012 spring season to an end for the Bishops.
The 2012 season saw Modise's teams continue to raise the expectations of North Carolina Wesleyan men's tennis after capturing a fourth straight USA South regular season title, tournament crown and NCAA berth. The Bishops were ranked as high as #5 in the nation earlier in the season after defeating Kenyon College, which recently made a National Championship appearance. This season also saw Wesleyan's women's team turn the corner with a third straight winning season and a share of the program's first USA South regular season championship.
His five-year tenure at NCWC saw Modise produce 44 All-Conference performers (29 male, 15 female), four USA South Rookies of the Year (3 male, 1 female), and one USA South Player of the Year. His Bishops combined for nine conference regular season and/or tournament championships, and he exits as the all-time winningnest coach in the history of both programs. For his efforts, Modise earned the league's Coach of the Year award on four occasions.
He now prepares to rebuild a Southern Miss program that finished 3-19 this past season, but the veteran coach is excited about the challenge before him.
"I am a better coach because of what I have learned at North Carolina Wesleyan the past five years," he recently stated. "My experience at NCWC has prepared me for this important step in my career, and I look forward to beginning my work at Southern Miss."
Wesleyan's search for a new head men's and women's coach is currently underway. Please continue to check www.ncwcsport.com for updates!