FOREST, Va. – Guilford College’s Dave McCain earned the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC)’s Men’s Tennis Coach of the Year Award Monday, according to a vote of the league’s head men’s tennis coaches. He is just the second Quakers’ mentor so honored, joining Steve MacDermut ‘76, who claimed the 1998 prize.
Guilford had five students combine for seven all-conference commendations, including First Team All-ODAC selection Turner Votipka (Nashville, N.C./Nash Central). The Quakers’ Levi Bruff (Lexington, N.C./Central Davidson), Mason Church (Wilkesboro, N.C./Millers Creek Christian), Erik Meiler (Winchester, Mass./Winchester) and Aaron Smedley (West Chicago, Ill./Barlett) each captured second-team honors. The five honorees matches the most by a Guilford team since 2008.
McCain directed the Quakers to an 11-5 overall record and a school-record 8-2 league mark. Guilford was ranked fifth in the preseason league coaches’ poll, but won nine of its final 10 regular-season contests to secure the number-three seed in the 2015 league tournament. Guilford reached the semifinals for the third time in four years. McCain helped Guilford match its most overall victories since 2012 and show a three-win improvement in ODAC wins from last year. He moved into second place among Guilford’s career coaching wins leaders with a 44-42 mark in five seasons.
Votipka collected the fifth and sixth All-ODAC commendations of his career with his selection to the first-team first-singles unit and the second-team second-doubles squad. The senior captain posted a 14-7 singles record and a 12-7 doubles mark, compiled mostly when paired with Meiler at first doubles. He earned the league’s Men’s Tennis Player of the Week Award a school-record three times this year. Votipka led Guilford in both singles and doubles wins and ranked second among ODAC first-singles players in winning percentage (.786). Votipka and Meiler had a .733 winning percentage in first-doubles matches, which topped the conference and ranked fourth among all tandems.
Votipka’s career singles mark stands at 46-36, which ranks fourth among the school’s recorded victories leaders. His 46-34 doubles ledger sits second on Guilford’s all-time list. He earned All-ODAC honors four times in his first three seasons, including first-team laurels as a sophomore at second singles. Votipka won his second straight Jack Jensen Ideal Student-Athlete Award and the prestigious Nereus C. English Athletic Leadership Award at Guilford’s Athletics Department Awards Ceremony May 3. He graduates Saturday with a degree in business management.
Bruff and Church, both sophomores, were second-team all-league selections at third doubles. The pair posted an 8-5 overall record, 4-1 in the ODAC. Bruff also recorded a 4-2 doubles record when paired with Mesa Martorell, for a 12-7 overall doubles mark that tied him with Votipka for the team lead. By the end of the season, Bruff had secured the sixth spot in the Quakers’ singles’ lineup where he recorded a 4-3 record. He had a 5-6 overall singles ledger and a combined mark of 17-13.
In addition to his doubles honor, Church also earned Second Team All-ODAC recognition for his play at fifth singles. He went 9-4 with a 5-2 mark versus league foes. His .714 winning percentage at fifth singles stood fourth in the league. He also went 2-1 in three appearances at sixth singles. Church had a 17-9 combined record this season.
Meiler captured Second Team All-ODAC recognition at first doubles for the second straight season. He and Votipka posted an 11-4 overall record, 8-2 in league contests. Meiler also played third singles, posted a 6-6 overall mark and won six of his final eight matches. His six singles wins matched his career high and his 17 combined victories mark a new personal best. The junior has a 29-24 career doubles record and a 17-32 singles standard.
Smedley topped the league’s winning percentage leaders at fourth singles with a 6-0 record. The sophomore ranked second on the team with a 12-6 overall singles mark, which also included contests at second, third and fifth singles. Smedley was 8-1 in league matches and finished with a 10-10 overall doubles record. He was most often paired with senior Trevor Cox at the number-two flight.
McCain loses Votipka and Cox, but could return eight letter winners next season.