UTEP's 12 victories were the most since 2009 and went undefeated in the Sun City (6-0), first time since 2004
Match is set for Thursday at 8 a.m. CT
Miners finish home season undefeated
UTEP to close out regular season against Utah State on Thursday in Sun City
Win 10th match of 2013
Hosts Jon Teicher and Julie Levesque interview head women's basketball coach Keitha Adams, head tennis coach Mark Roberts and men's basketball player Konner Tucker.
In his first full season as head coach, Roberts helped turn around a struggling program (eight wins combined the previous two seasons) as he guided the Miners to 12 wins in 2013. He also orchestrated the Miners' first undefeated home record (6-0) since 2004.
Roberts tutored his first all-conference player as a head coach in Rebeca Calvillo as she was named to the All-Conference USA third team. Calvillo was the first Miner since 2009 to earn all-conference recognition.
The 2012-13 season started off with a bang as Calvillo and Martina Trierweiler won titles at the 2012 Aggie Women's Invitational. Trierweiler claimed the white singles main draw, while Calvillo took the crimson singles main draw.
The spring season saw the Miners win three of their first nine matches before claiming their longest winning streak in three years. Roberts saw his squad win five matches in row starting with a 6-1 win over Illinois State on Feb. 22 and ending with a 7-0 stomping of Western New Mexico on March 10. The squad also won four of its last six matches to close out the regular season.
Director of Athletics Bob Stull named Mark Roberts as UTEP's women's tennis head coach on June 27, 2012.
A former player and coach at I-10 rival New Mexico State, Roberts returns to the Southwest after serving as assistant coach at UNLV for the last four seasons. The Rebels made NCAA Tournament appearances in 2009, 2010 and 2011, advancing to the second round in 2010, and won Mountain West Conference regular season title in 2009 and 2011.
Roberts, 31, was chosen the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Mountain Region Assistant Coach of the Year in 2010 and 2012.
"I am extremely excited to be the new women's tennis head coach at UTEP," Roberts said. "I would like to thank Director of Athletics Bob Stull for this great opportunity. I hope the city of El Paso is ready for a new and exciting journey alongside the UTEP women's tennis program. Let's go Miners!"
"We're really excited about hiring Mark to lead our tennis program," Director of Athletics Bob Stull said. "He was highly instrumental in UNLV's success over the last four years and is a natural fit for us, having played and coached at New Mexico State. Mark is an outstanding coach with high energy, and he's well-connected in recruiting. He is an equally outstanding person and will be a tremendous addition to our athletic department staff."
A native of Durban, South Africa, Roberts was involved with all facets of the tennis operation at UNLV. He helped the Rebels achieve team ITA national rankings as high as no. 29 in 2011. From an individual standpoint, he coached Kristina Nedeltcheva, who was ranked 23rd in the country in singles in 2010, and the doubles tandem of Lucia Batta and Anna Maskaljun, who rated 48th nationally in 2011. Batta was honored as the 2012 Mountain West Conference Player of the Year.
UNLV has enjoyed equal success academically over the last four years, including garnering an ITA Scholar-Athlete Status Team Award in 2010 for maintaining a cumulative grade point average of 3.2 or better.
Prior to his stint in Las Vegas, Roberts worked as a tennis teaching professional in Illinois and Pennsylvania for four years (2004-08).
Following a standout collegiate playing career, Roberts began his excursion into coaching as a graduate assistant at his alma mater New Mexico State. He played no. 1 singles and doubles and was team captain in his lone year with the Aggies (2002-03). He also played at Boise State for two and a half years (2000-02), qualifying for NCAAs in doubles with a national ranking of 23 as a junior. Roberts was named team MVP his sophomore year while equaling the school record for singles victories (31).
Roberts earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication Studies from NMSU in May of 2004, graduating with honors. He added a Masters of Science in Sport & Leisure Services Management from UNLV last month.
His wife, Jessica, played volleyball at Boise State and Pittsburgh. They were married in 2005.