October 23, 2006

Bloomsburg Tennis Assists Special Olympics

BLOOMSBURG- The Bloomsburg University Men's and Women's Tennis Team were recently named "Sports Organization of the Year in 2006" by Special Olympics Pennsylvania. The tennis team was nominated by Special Olympics, Columbia/Montour Counties for their outstanding and continuing support of the local program.

As a new sport, Special Olympics had just a few left over racquets from another program. Bloomsburg University's tennis teams have generously allowed Special Olympics to use not only their courts, but tennis racquets, balls, and equipment until they are able to obtain a grant to purchase their own racquets and balls.

Bloomsburg University's tennis coach, Marty Coyne has been assisting the team at their trainings and staying after his teams' practices. He not only helped with tennis trainings, but also had each of his players take turns each session to help train their athletes.

Although this has been a new endeavor for Bloomsburg University and Special Olympics-Pennsylvania, Columbia/Montour County, both groups have benefited tremendously. "Since we have been training in tennis, the Bloomsburg University tennis team has been very supportive," said Laura Davis, Manager of Special Olympics for Columbia/ Montour County. "Marty Coyne encourages his athletes to volunteer at trainings and to put their knowledge and ability to use. Coach Coyne shows his team members specific skills he wants them to teach the Special Olympic athletes. By encouraging his athletes to participate in the coaching of Special Olympic athletes, he is not only providing wonderful role models for Special Olympic athletes, but exposing Bloomsburg University athletes to a wonderful life long relationship with Special Olympics."

-Courtesy of Laura Davis- Columbia/ Montour County Special Olympics

Special Olympics

Left to right in front: Special Olympics tennis coach Joe Tloczynski, Jaclyn Kelly, Ashley Andrews, Allison Carney, Iida Hokkanen, Special Olympics athlete Danny Tloczynski holding the award, Emily Pratt, Torie Cunningham, Tracy Nissenbaum, Emily Murphy, Katie Haslyn, and Special Olympics assistant tennis coach John Bressler.

Back row: BU Tennis Coach Marty Coyne, Dan Gal, Ryan Chow, Wil Biddle, Austin Peters, Dan Philips, Geoff Whitely, Ryan Glubo, and BU assistant coach Mike McGrath,