Gray & Albaugh win big as ODAC Coaches of the Year

This spring, head coaches Leighann Albaugh of the women’s golf team and Charles Gray of the tennis program were recipients of the ODAC Coach of the Year award.

Albaugh received this award for the second consecutive year because of the elections from her fellow peers and coaches.

She was recognized for her work ethic and leadership on and off the court and was “absolutely honored,” and said she owes her win to her players.

Albaugh said she has worked tremendously hard preparing her players for life by continuously mentoring them and telling them to focus on being in the present moment. She said she believes golf is a metaphor for life that requires patience and resilience in competition.

“[Coach Albaugh] always gave me support,” captain of the women’s golf team and 2014 ODAC Player of the Year Olivia Bowling ‘16 stated, “and I don’t think I would be the player that I am, or think I would have won the award, if I did not have her support.”

After leading the golf team to their win in the ODACs this year, Albaugh said she is looking forward to constantly improving the defending champions’ skills in preparation for next season.

As for Gray’s first year as head tennis coach at Randolph-Macon, he was named ODAC Coach of the Year for his work with the men’s tennis program and helped lead the men’s and women’s tennis teams to third place finishes in the ODACs. He said he credited a lot of his success to his players, R-MC and the new tennis facility which he called “one of the best facilities in the Mid-Atlantic region.”

Coach Gray said many good things about the young men and women he coached this year. On the boys’ side, he credited much of the leadership roles to juniors Connor Hoer, Michael Baxter and Ryan Bryd.

“We had 17 people on the roster this year on the men’s side,” Gray said, “but everyone was really supportive of each other.”

Byrd stated that Coach Gray was “an outstanding coach and role model… He always gives good advice, has a positive attitude, and is very encouraging.”

Sophomore John Adam added that Coach Gray was “the best coach [he] ever had… he prepares us for success on and off the court.”

As for his coaching philosophy, Coach Gray said he uses the “three C’s: classroom, court and Community.” He also noted the importance of the order and said that he “wants excellence in all three from all his players.”

Coach Gray said he is looking forward to next year, and he expects his players to continue to compete at a high level, be an integral part of the community and excel academically.

“We set the bench mark high,” Gray said, “and I have no intention of going backwards.”

-Rebecca Ream ’16 & Jordon Lee ’16, Sports Editors

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