DAVIDSON, N.C. — Former standout North Carolina player and assistant coach Sara Anundsen has been named head coach of the Davidson women’s tennis program, as announced today by Athletic Director Jim Murphy.
“Sara brings to Davidson an exceptional record of success as a player and a coach in a highly-competitive academic and athletic environment,” said Murphy. “She is the right person to enhance our program’s success and fill the formidable shoes of retired Coach Caroline Price.”
Anundsen takes over for Price, who retired this past June after leading the Wildcats for the past 32 years and winning the 1983 NCAA Division III National Championship.
“First off I would like to congratulate Coach Price on an outstanding 32-year career at Davidson. Her accomplishments and contribution to the Davidson women’s tennis program cannot be understated,” said Anundsen. “I would like to thank Jim Murphy, [Assistant A.D./SWA] Katy McNay and [Associate A.D.] Scott Applegate for this incredible opportunity. It’s an honor to be chosen to lead a program that I believe has tremendous potential and I’m excited to be joining the Davidson family. The beautiful campus, academic reputation, and family atmosphere give me the ability to recruit some of the top student-athletes in the country. I look forward to using the experience I have gained at Princeton and UNC to develop and mentor the ladies on the team and help them reach their full potential on and off the court.”
The first-year head coach comes from a very successful program at UNC. During her four years as assistant coach, Anundsen helped the Tar Heels reach the NCAATournament all four years, including this past season when UNC reached its first national championship match before falling in a close 4-3 decision toUCLA.
In addition to capturing the 2014 Atlantic Coast Conference regular season title and finishing third in the ITA National Rankings, the Tar Heels posted a 29-6 record, which was one win shy of the program record set in 2010. Anundsen also coached four players this past year that received All-American honors, including the No. 1 player in the country, Jamie Loeb.
In herfirst year as an assistant, Anundsen helped the Tar Heels advance to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Junior Sanaz Marand earned All-America honorsafter advancing to the quarterfinals of the NCAA singles event. In addition, Marand and doubles partner Sophie Grabinski earned All-America honors for their play.
The 2009-10 campaign was a new high for the program, as the Tar Heels advanced to the national semifinals for the first time in school history. Anundsen earned ITA Carolina Region Assistant Coach of the Year for her efforts as the Tar Heels finished with a school-record 30 wins and an ACC-record 11-0 mark in league play.
The 2011 Tar Heels followed that up with a run to the national quarterfinals as well as the program's first ACC title since 2002. Three Carolina players earned All-America honors and Anundsen was named ITA National Assistant Coach of the Year after earning regional honors for the second straight season.
As a player, Anundsen earned All-America honors in 2006 and 2007, and helped lead the Tar Heels to a pair of Sweet Sixteens and an Elite Eight. A native of Littleton, Colo., Anundsen captured the 2007 NCAA doubles title after falling in the national semifinals in 2006. She and her playing partner finished the 2007 season 29-6 and were named ITA National Doubles Team Of The Year. By virtue of their NCAA title, Anundsen and Long also earned a wild card berthinto the 2007 U.S. Open.
Anundsen graduated from UNC with a degree in management and society in 2007. She twice was named to the Dean’s List and earned ACC Honor Roll honors three times, while being named to the ACC All-Academic Team twice. During her senior year, Anundsen was named to the ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District III Team.