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- August 17, 2023
- Thursday, 2:00 PM to 2:45 PM
- Atlanta Tennis Podcast
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Join us LIVE at 2:00PM on Thursday August 17th as we talk to Chase Hodges, Vice President of Universal Tennis
15-time NAIA national champion
Eight-time ITA NAIA National Coach of the Year
15-time NAIA National Coach of the Year
377-22 record at GGC (210-3 men; 167-19 women)
The first head coach in Georgia Gwinnett tennis history, Chase Hodges has established a dynasty in Lawrenceville. In his nine-year stay at GGC, his men’s and women’s teams have captured 15 national championships, he has been named national coach of the year 15 times by the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and on eight occasions by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA).
A decorated coach at all levels of collegiate tennis, Hodges delivered GGC its first-ever national titles in any sport with both the men’s and women’s 2014 NAIA National Championship titles. He was able to repeat the feat with the men in 2015 guiding it to the crown while the women finished as the national runner-up. In 2016, the men’s tennis team completed a three-peat as NAIA national champions while the women’s team collected its second national title in three years of postseason eligibility. Hodges guided the men’s and women’s tennis programs to two more national titles in 2017 as the men’s team picked up its fourth consecutive title while the women’s squad repeated as champions to pick up its third NAIA title in four seasons. GGC continued its dominance in 2018, 2019, 2021 and 2022 by sweeping the NAIA national championships.
Hodges has 24 years of collegiate coaching experience–including the last 21 as a head coach–and boasts the distinction of being the only head coach in college tennis history to lead seven different programs to an ITA national ranking. Those programs include the women’s tennis teams from Longwood, UNC Asheville and GGC as well as the men’s teams from UNC Asheville, Drake, Georgia State and GGC. For six of the seven programs, it marked the first ITA rankings in school history.
He owns a career 623-113 (.846) combined men’s and women’s record as a head coach, including a 408-63 men’s record. Hodges collected his 600th career coaching victory during the 2022 campaign.
Hodges also oversees operations at the GGC Tennis Facility in Lawrenceville.
In 2021 he led the men’s tennis team to setting the record for longest winning streak in collegiate sports history with a 5-0 victory against Cumberlands (Ky.) on March 15. The team has won 168 straight matches. Hodges guided the Grizzlies to 2021 men’s and women’s national titles and undefeated seasons.
During the 2019 season, Hodges guided the men’s tennis team to surpass 100 consecutive victories — a winning streak that dates back to the 2015 season. The Grizzlies have recorded back-to-back seasons with 27 victories. He received the Wilson/ITA NAIA National Coach of the Year awards for both men’s and women’s tennis, marking the first time in his coaching career he has accomplished the feat by the organization. Federico Herrera Duran won the singles national title and Valentino Caratini and Ayed Zatar captured the NAIA and Oracle Cup Super Bowl Doubles national championships in the fall of 2018. The doubles tandem advanced to the Round of 16 at the ITA Fall National Championships in Surprise, Ariz.
Madeline Bosnjak went a combined 40-0 between singles and doubles action and was named the Most Outstanding Player in the 2019 national championship run. She captured the singles national title during the fall season. Bosnjak was named a 2019 second team Google Cloud Academic All-American by CoSIDA.
GGC swept the NAIA national titles in 2018 when both teams defeated Keiser (Fla.) in the national championship matches. Kevin Konfederak received the Google Cloud Academic All-America of the Year award for the At-Large College Division. Gilad Berman was named the championship’s Most Outstanding Player and won the clinching point in the title match. Konfederak won the singles national championship and teamed with Berman to win the NAIA and Oracle Cup Super Bowl Doubles championships during the fall season. Konfederak advanced to the quarterfinals of the ITA Fall National Championships in Indian Wells, Calif. by defeating opponents from Texas A&M, Ohio State and Florida State.
The 2017 men’s tennis season marked the fourth consecutive year that the Grizzlies captured the NAIA national championship. Hodges guided the men to their second wire-to-wire No. 1 ranking in the program’s five-year history, carrying the No. 1 ranking for 1,099 consecutive days dating back to the 2014 season. This mark broke the NAIA’s record for consecutive days at No. 1, surpassing Auburn Montgomery’s previous record of 1,098 days. GGC placed six individuals on the NAIA All-American list (Kevin Konfederak, Jordan Cox, Gilad Berman, and Connor Clements represented the Grizzlies as first team All-American honorees while Rafael Coutinho was placed on the second team and Federico Herrera Duran received an honorable mention). In the NAIA National Championship match, GGC defeated Xavier (La.) 5-0 to finish 2017 with a perfect 23-0 record. Hodges was also named the NAIA’s Coach of the Year.
The 2017 season was record-breaking for GGC women’s tennis as Hodges guided the Grizzlies to their first-ever undefeated season (26-0). The Grizzlies repeated as NAIA National Championships (2016, 2017), capturing their third NAIA title in four seasons. On March 8, 2017, Coach Hodges collected his 400th career victory as the women’s team defeated NCAA Division I foe North Carolina A&T 8-1 at the GGC Tennis Facility. GGC placed six on the NAIA All-American list (First Team-Valeria Podda, Klara Dohnalova, and Chiara Di Salvo, Second Team-Alyona Vasilyeva, and Honorable Mention-Emerald Able and Margarida Abreu). In the NAIA National Championship match, GGC defeated Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) 5-3. To date, GGC women’s tennis is 78-16 in five seasons of play. Of note, Hodges was named the NAIA’s Coach of the Year and was also tabbed the ITA NAIA Women’s Tennis Coach of the Year for the first time in his career.
Academically, GGC men’s and women’s tennis had their first-ever CoSIDA Academic All-America recognitions as Konfederak, Cox, Di Salvo, and Podda were named to the prestigious list of honorees.
In 2016, the men’s team completed a perfect 26-0 season, capturing its third-straight NAIA National Championship. The Grizzly men completed its first wire-to-wire No. 1 ranking and placed six on the All-American selection list (Jordan Cox, Kevin Konfederak, Matias Hatem, Gilad Berman, Lachlan McPhee, and Connor Clements). The men’s team defeated each No. 1 ranked opponent in NCAA Division II and III during the storied season.
GGC’s women’s team captured its second NAIA National Championship in 2016 after finishing as runner-up in 2015. With an 18-2 record, the Grizzly women remained undefeated in NAIA play and placed six selections on the All-American team (Valeria Podda, Klara Dohnalova, Chiara Di Salvo, Alyona Vasilyeva, Helga Pinones-Haltenhoff, and Sophie Feller).
It was another banner year for the Grizzly men in 2015 as they played unquestionably the toughest schedule in the country, beating opponents from all three NCAA divisions as well as the NAIA to finish the year with a 16-2. In all, GGC beat 11 teams ranked in their respective division, including 2014 NCAA Division II champion West Florida. Led by a line-up that featured five All-Americans, including three first teamers, the Green and Gray coasted through the NAIA National Championships in May, winning all four matches in 5-0 fashion.
Hodges earned the ITA National Coach of the Year award for the second successive season, and he further added to that with the same NAIA honor following the tournament. Five Grizzly men ended the year ranked within the nation’s top 50, marking the first time that any four-year program, regardless of division, had achieved that feat in two years.
The Grizzly women posted an 11-7 record in 2015, led by the nation’s top-ranked player in sophomore Valeria Podda. The talisman for the Green and Gray for much of the year, she led the way for a GGC line-up that featured five All-Americans at the national tournament as the team came up just short of claiming back-to-back titles, falling 5-4 in the championship match to Auburn-Montgomery.
The GGC men’s squad went 21-0 in 2014, capping an unbeaten season with a 5-1 victory over defending-champion Embry-Riddle (Fla.) in the national title match. The Grizzlies earned six NAIA All-Americans, including three First-Team selections. During the year, the Grizzlies knocked off NCAA Division I, II and III teams, plus the top NAIA programs.
Meanwhile, the GGC women’s squad edged the men’s team for the first trophy by a matter of hours, winning the 2014 championship earlier in the day on the same courts at the Mobile Tennis Center, also against Embry-Riddle, in a dramatic 5-4 decision. It stood as Hodges’ 300th career win as a head coach in collegiate tennis. The Grizzlies had eight NAIA All-Americans on the season, including a pair of First-Team players. During the year, the GGC women also earned victories against NCAA Division I, II and III competition, plus the top NAIA programs.
Following the championships, Hodges was named NAIA National Coach of the Year for both men’s and women’s tennis, capping the Grizzlies’ very first season of postseason eligibility with a pair of No. 1 rankings. He also was named 2014 Wilson/ITA NAIA Men’s Tennis Coach of the Year, days after being named South Region winner.
He has recruited some of the top players from around the country and around the world to lay the foundation of the Grizzly program, developing many outstanding student-athletes.
In addition to the Grizzlies’ on-court success, the men’s tennis team has held the highest team GPA among Grizzly Athletics programs.
In Hodges’ first season at GGC in 2013, the Grizzlies posted an 11-1 men’s record and a 5-3 women’s record, marking the first seasons of competition in school history.
Hodges came to GGC from Division I Georgia State University in Atlanta, where he capped his three-year tenure by being named Colonial Athletic Association Co-Coach of the Year in April 2012. Hodges’ time with the Panthers (2010-12) featured the greatest turnaround in men’s collegiate tennis history, as he inherited a 1-20 team and led them to a 15-6 mark in his first season. He then set a school record with 21 victories in 2011 and added 20 more wins to the ledger the following year for a 56-17 mark over three years.
Before GSU, Hodges spent four successful years (2005-09) at the helm of the Drake University program, where he guided the Bulldogs to a Missouri Valley regular-season or conference tournament title in each season. He was named the Missouri Valley Coach of the Year three times, leading the squad to an 85-17 overall record. Hodges’ Drake team also achieved the highest ITA national ranking in school history at No. 33, at one point boasting the nation’s longest regular-season winning streak at 42 matches.
Before Drake, Hodges spent four combined seasons as head coach at University of North Carolina-Asheville (2002-05) and Longwood University in Farmville, Va., (2002), leading both the men’s and women’s programs. During this time, he led his teams to an overall 105-58 record and their first rankings in school history.
A native of Hickory, N.C., Hodges played two years collegiately at North Carolina State University before finishing his career at UNC-Wilmington. He earned his bachelor’s degree from UNCW in 1998 and a master’s degree there three years later while working with the Seahawks as a graduate assistant.
Hodges and his wife Vanessa are the proud parents of 13 year old, Gabriella Hodges and newborn Chase Hodges II.