New Coach Recruits

Vincent Paravecchia

Thomas Piersig hopes to bring a business-like attitude to tennis when he leads his team at Bucks onto the court this spring.

The 2004 tennis season will mark the beginning of Piersig’s college coaching career. It is a step in a different direction for the self-employed energy consultant.

Coach Piersig comes to Bucks with 25 years of instructional experience. He is a long-time teacher at Northampton Tennis and Fitness and the Mill Creek Tennis Center in lower Bucks.

Piersig currently plays in the local division of the USTA senior bracket. He has placed in the top ten for an amazing 13 straight years at the Middlestates competition, which consists of top players from Pennsylvania, Delaware, and New Jersey.

Ironically enough, tennis was not a sport of interest for the five-year Yardley resident. He never played until his brother gave him a racket when he was in his late-20s.

“I was a late bloomer in college,” Piersig said with a chuckle.

In 1980, Piersig met his mentor and close friend Scott Nichols. At the time, Nichols was the head pro at the Mill Creek Tennis Center.

Nichols worked with Piersig to develop his serve and volley style of play. He also taught Piersig methods for teaching the game to others.

“I wouldn’t have either one [playing or teaching] without him,” Piersig said praising Nichols.

Piersig followed Nichols to the Radnor Valley Country, where he became head coach of the tennis club. He also instructed at the Northampton Tennis and Fitness Center and ran camps and training sessions at local high schools.

“Kids can relate to the fact that I know how to play matches,” Piersig said.

Among the high school teams Piersig worked with was Council Rock-North. His talent for teaching match play techniques was noticed by head coach Paul Wysocki.

Wysocki and former Bucks coach, Dr. Barry Sysler, informed Piersig of the recent coaching vacancy at the college. He inquired about the position, and was named the new coach by Dr. Rice last July.

Coach Piersig advocates team effort and hard work in his players. He will attempt to build a successful foundation with returning sophomore Shana Morris and newcomers such as Derrick Nitzki.

Piersig is seeking out other interested players before tryouts begin later this semester.

Currently, there are approximately 15 male and female roster spots remaining for the team. Six singles players, three doubles partners, and reserves will be chosen before practice begins this spring

Bucks will open up the tennis season on March 29 in Harrisburg and will play a total of nine matches running through to April 26. From there, the team will try to qualify for nationals at the EPCC tournament on May 3.

The coach encourages anyone with playing experience to attend one of the free pre-camps at the Northampton Tennis and Fitness Center beginning this semester. There is no age limit and he will even set up a training program for each player at the Wellness Center on campus.

“Anyone who has played at amateur, varsity high school, or local tournament level can come,” Piersig said.

For more information, please call the college’s tennis extension at 2127. There will also be periodic tables outside the cafeteria from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.