Wyman goes to great lengths to recruit Shoremen tennis team

Area colleges

April 25, 1991|By Paul McMullen

With hometowns listed in the Soviet Union, Argentina, Mexico and Texas, it is one of the more interesting rosters to come in the mail. When Fred Wyman went about making Washington College a Division III power in men's tennis, he tried and liked the international route.

A miler at Florida in the 1960s who has a dentistry practice in Chestertown, Wyman coached softball at the college in the early 1980s. He inherited the men's tennis team from Tom Finnegan after the 1984 season, and ever since the telephone people have liked the way he recruits.

A pair of transfers from the University of Maryland had some friends back in College Park who were from Mexico. They recommended Claudio Gonzalez to Wyman in 1985, and Washington College has had a man or woman from Mexico playing since.

In 1986, Wyman's No. 2 player hooked up in a tense duel with a UNC-Greensboro player from South Africa. One conversation later, Washington had the inside track on some prospects from South Africa. Peter Maller became an Academic All-America, and Larry Gewer took the NCAA title last year. The second-ranked player among Division III women is Tracy Peel, a junior from Johannesburg.

"I was drilling away in my office one day last year when Advantage International called," Wyman said. "It was Alex Metreveli's agent, and he was looking for a place for his son."

Irakli Metreveli, from Tbilisi in the Soviet Union, is Washington's No. 2 player, behind Houston native and NCAA favorite Scott Flippin Read. Metreveli's dad made the final at Wimbledon in 1973.

Alternating in the No. 3 and 4 spots are sophomores Alberto Diaz, from the Dominican Republic via the McDonogh School, and Texan Trevor Hurd. Wyman learned about Hurd from Read, and Diaz helped recruit Emilio Bogado, an Argentinian who flip-flops in the Nos. 5 and 6 spots with Mexican Carlos Nuno.

"Even people in the United States think we are located in Washington, D.C., and that perception helps us get some of the foreign kids," Wyman said. "We're Division III, so there are no athletic scholarships involved, but most of our players qualify for academic merit awards. We've got the highest grade-point average of any team on campus, and I'm most proud of that."

Washington is ranked No. 4 in the nation, and the Shoremen will be making their sixth straight NCAA appearance when the Division III tournament is held at Claremont, Calif., May 12-18.

* The Middle Atlantic Conference baseball tournament will be held in Harrisburg, Pa., May 4-5, and Johns Hopkins can wrap up a berth by winning at least one of two games at Swarthmore Saturday. The Blue Jays are 16-13-1 overall and 7-1 in the Southeast Section, just ahead of Swarthmore.

Coach Bob Babb's team is still trying to find itself. The Blue Jays' defense was shaky during a 5-8 start, but an all-new infield is coming around. Third baseman Sean Holub (Boys' Latin) and first baseman Matt Menz are sophomores; shortstop Joe Kail is a freshman; and second baseman Tim Monahan is a junior.

* The Maryland women's lacrosse team lost to Harvard in the NCAA title game last year, and the 10-2 Terps appear headed back to the tournament. Their only losses were to Penn State and Virginia, the latter by a goal.

Michele Uhlfelder, a senior from Pikesville, has 26 goals and 17 assists, and takes 97 career goals into today's game at West Chester. She shares the team lead in points with Leann Shuck, a senior from Broadneck who has 23 goals and 20 assists. Betsy Elder, a freshman from Severna Park, has 17 goals.

* Jim Ward has signed on as the offensive coordinator at the jTC State University of New York at Buffalo, which will move from Division III to I-AA in 1993. Ward spent the 1970s at Northwestern High. He then was an assistant coach for five years at Howard University and the last two at Norfolk State.

One of the top schools in the SUNY system, Buffalo could be joining the East Coast Conference in September, when its teams move up to Division I. It will serve as host to the World University Games in 1993.

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