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College sports are going through an interesting time and it’s not only the NCAA DI programs. Don’t forget about the DII and DIII programs around the country.
Rick is joined this week, by his friend, Yair Banuelos, the Head Men’s and Women’s Tennis Coach at DII, Auburn Montgomery.
Banuelos came to the Auburn Montgomery Warhawks from Western New Mexico University, where he guided both the men’s and women’s programs to national prominence, as well as established the Mustangs as a power in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference.
A native of Mexico City, Mexico, Banuelos was a star on the court for the Mustangs prior to his coaching career. As a junior he was named the RMAC Player of the Year in 2010, earning All-RMAC first team honors in singles and doubles.
During his final year Banuelos was named the Senior Player of the Year in the South Central Region, the RMAC Honor Student-Athlete of the Year, and earned singles and doubles All-RMAC first-team honors for the second year in a row. During his senior year Banuelos went 6-0 in both singles and doubles during the conference season, while also being named to the RMAC All-Academic First Team for his work in the classroom.
Banuelos earned his bachelor’s degree from Western New Mexico in 2011, before earning his master’s from WNM in 2013.
He now guides the Warhawks on the court and through a pandemic affecting all college sports.
His women’s team posted a record of 5-4, while the men finished 4-4 in a 2020 season shortened by COVID-19. The Warhawks won three of five combined GSC matches, with the women going 2-1 against conference foes. Both squads closed out the abbreviated season with a 7-0 road win at Spring Hill College on March 8. Prior to the beginning of the 2020 spring campaign, the double’s duo of Alba De la Torre and Julia Enderink came in at no. 20 nationally in the final ITA 2019 Fall D-II Double’s Rankings.
In 2019, Coach Banuelos led the women’s team to a record of 9-12 and the men to a mark of 13-6. The women’s squad posted the fourth-best Gulf South Conference record at 7-4, while the men’s team finished third in the regular-season conference standings at 8-2. The men’s team ranked at no. 28 nationally in the final Intercollegiate Tennis Association D-II rankings, with Alvaro Terron ranking 28th nationally in singles and Eban Straker-Meads ranking 36th. Both the men’s and women’s tennis programs were named All-Academic Teams by the ITA, while Alba De la Torre, Julia Enderink, Svenja Petri, Tonja Foessmeier, Eban Straker-Meads, Marcus Lind and Santiago Veglia were named ITA Scholar Athletes.
Learn about what Coach is going though with his teams at the DII level.