Dec. 16, 2010
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EVANSTON, Ill. -- Northwestern head coach Claire Pollard announced today (Thursday) that Jackie Holden, a member of NU's coaching staff since 2008, has been elevated to the position of associate head coach. Holden has been instrumental in keeping the 'Cats at or near the top of the national rankings the past two years and in coaching NU to back-to-back ITA National Indoor Team championships.
In addition to her on-court coaching contributions, Holden has spearheaded a number of off-court initiatives to advance the women's tennis program, specifically those related to alumni relations, marketing, social media and match video analysis.
"Anyone who has spent time around our women's tennis program can tell you that this is well-deserved recognition for Jackie," Pollard said. "She's meant so much to us in terms of our players' development on the court, she constantly challenges them to improve every day. Jackie also has been tireless in promoting our team and our matches to the community and it truly pays off in generating fan support. I know that she'll continue to find ways to take our program to new heights."
Since Holden's arrival at Northwestern, the Wildcats have posted a combined dual match record of 51-9, which includes a 25-1 ledger against Big Ten opponents and two Big Ten Tournament championships. NU, which spent the entire 2009 regular season ranked No. 1 in the Campbell's/ITA College Tennis poll, became the first northern school ever to win the indoor national title in 2009 and repeated the feat in 2010.
On the individual side, Holden has helped coach Northwestern's Maria Mosolova to All-American finishes at the NCAA Singles Championships each of the last two seasons. Mosolova also won the ITA Midwest Regional singles crown in 2009 while NU's Linda Abu Mushrefova and Nida Hamilton recently won the 2010 Regional doubles championship.
"I am delighted to have been promoted to the position of associate head coach," Holden said. "I feel extremely fortunate that I get to work with Claire every day. She is one of the most experienced and well-respected coaches in college tennis and a huge reason why the Northwestern women's tennis program has been so successful over the past decade."
Holden came to Northwestern following her time at England's Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) where she was one of eight national coaches in the UK, charged with identifying and developing the best junior talent in the country. Among the players Holden traveled with as captain of the U-12 age group were 2008 Wimbledon Junior champion Laura Robson and Orange Bowl champion Jessica Ren. She has worked alongside numerous world-renowned tennis coaches including legendary doubles coach Louis Cayer and former head of women's tennis at the LTA Carl Maes.
A 1989 summa cum laude graduate of Mississippi State, Holden partnered with Pollard to win an NCAA doubles championship their senior season and consequently earned first-round matches against Steffi Graf and Gabriella Sabatini at Wimbledon and Jana Novotna and Helena Sukova at the U.S. Open.
The Wildcats begin their 2011 spring season Jan. 14 when they host the Wildcat Invitational at the Combe Tennis Center.
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