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By Emma Grimes '18 / Athletic Communications Assistant
Chris Cox '18 served up quite the career as a player for the Covenant men's tennis team. Now, he continues to do so as the assistant coach for the program while pursuing seminary.
After graduating with a B.A. in sport administration, Cox married former Covenant women's tennis player Mackenzie Jones '18 and immediately put his degree to work as he began working as a tennis coach at a country club in Winter Park, Fla.
Shortly after, he began working for The Geneva School, a Christian private school in the Winter Park area. There, Cox oversaw an eight-court tennis facility, where he managed camps, tournaments, and private lessons.
In 2019, Cox returned to the mountain and is now entering his second year as the assistant coach for both programs, alongside head coach John Hirte. He is also currently enrolled at Covenant Baptist Theological Seminary.
"My job consists of helping Coach Hirte run the team practices and workouts, working one on one with individual players and aiding in the recruiting process and social media content creation," said Cox. "My time at Covenant prepared me for the future by giving me ample tools, resources, and experience to tackle the challenges of the career world. The sport administration degree specifically encouraged me to continue my passion for coaching as a career path."
In his time as a Scot, Cox was a four-year standout member of the men's tennis team. He earned All-USA South honors three times and was twice named to the USA South All-West Division first team. Cox also holds the program record for singles wins at 56 and set the program's career doubles wins record with 55, alongside doubles partner Matthew Harvie '18.
His senior year was perhaps his best, as he went 17-3 overall in singles play, setting the single-season program record for wins. He also went undefeated (7-0) in conference play and won each of his last 10 singles matches of the season. In doubles, Cox and Harvie went 19-2 overall, including a program-record 17-match win streak to end the year.
Cox's play was crucial on some of the best teams in program history. The Scots won back-to-back USA South West Division titles in 2017 and 2018, with a program-record 15 wins in 2018.
Grateful to now be on the coaching side of things, Cox looks back fondly at his time as a player at Covenant.
"Covenant, with its emphasis on discipleship and well-rounded education, was perfectly suited to create an amazing team sports experience that I now can continue to be a part of, just in a coaching role."
With all of the greatness he achieved on the court, interestingly enough, Cox's most favorite memory of being a Scot was a coin flip his junior year after Covenant had tied for the West Division title.
"We were tied going into the conference tournament seeding for the West Division, and therefore a coin toss would decide who took the No. 1 seed in our division," recalled Cox. "After beating LaGrange at their courts, our team was all waiting on the bus awaiting Coach Hirte to get off a call with the conference with the results of the coin flip. Covenant won the toss, and Coach Hirte ran out of the building cheering to which our team began raucously celebrating on the bus...all over one coin flip."
Undoubtedly, Cox left his mark on the mountain as a player and is continuing that journey now as a coach. He credits Covenant with the ability to take an individual sport and turn it into a team-focused endeavor.
"What stuck with me the most from my time playing at Covenant was the amazing opportunity of taking an individual sport like tennis and building friendships that pushed me to be the best I could be at tennis -- not for myself, but for the team as a whole."
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