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Teaching Pros

The LTC is home to some of the best teaching pros in Albuquerque!  Many of these pros have played and/or coached Division I college tennis here at the University of New Mexico or elsewhere.  Many are trained as USPTA professionals, while others have picked up their skills learning from other great pros.  

Johnny Kowalski

Johnny Kowalski is the Director of the LTC.  Johnny hails from Carlsbad, NM and was a key member of the UNM Men's Tennis Team for four years garnering two Conference Championships.  He has been teaching tennis since finishing college in 2002.  Johnny works with some of the top juniors in the Southwest as the Director of LPTA.  

Vicky Maes

Vicky Maes has been at UNM since the summer of 2018. She was appointed as the head coach of the Women’s Tennis program in March 2019. Prior to coming to UNM, Maes spent 17 years as the head coach at The University of Arizona. In all, coach Maes has over 20 years of Division 1 coaching experience yet is also extremely passionate about teaching individuals and groups of all levels and ages. Maes is a USPTA certified professional, level 1, and is eager to share her knowledge and experience with you. 

Bob Scott

Bob Scott has worked all around the country as a tennis coach and teaching pro, both at country clubs and as a collegiate coach.  Having retired from Director of the LTC, you might see Bob around the club teaching group and private lessons.  Bob's Superdrills give players a chance to take advantage of his lifetime of tennis knowledge.  



Sarah O'Connor

Sarah O’Connor is from Dublin, Ireland.  She started playing tennis when she was only 4 years old.  As a junior Sarah was consistently ranked top two in Ireland.  She came to UNM in the fall of 2021 as a freshman and played singles and doubles.  Sarah has experience coaching junior tennis players of all levels and ages back in Ireland and will be working the UNM summer camps.  She looks forward to working with all levels of juniors and adults in both clinics and private lessons at Lobo Tennis Club.  Sarah will be available in the off-season for lessons.

Roy Cañada

Roy Cañada came to Albuquerque from Mexico to play for the UNM Men's Tennis Team, and achieved All-American status during his time playing for the Lobos.  Roy was the UNM Women's Assistant and Head Tennis Coach for a combined 16 years.  Roy does group and individual lessons for all levels and all ages.

Yue Lin "Polly" Chen

Polly was born in Yunlin, Taiwan and grew up in Taiwan until coming to UNM as a freshman in 2017.  She competed for the UNM Women’s Tennis Team from 2017 to 2022.  In 2021 and 2022 Polly was named to the Mountain West Women’s Tennis Singles All-Conference Team.  In 2021 she received her undergraduate degree in Business Administration.  Polly is currently working on her Masters of Business Administration with a major in Marketing and plans to graduate in the Spring of 2023.  Polly has taught in the UNM summer tennis camps for juniors and has worked with all ages of adults.  Polly is available for clinics or private lessons with all levels of juniors and adults and looks forward to designing a program to meet the needs of the student. 

Rafa Abdulsalam

Rafael “Rafa” Abdulsalam is from Carabobo and Valencia, Venezuela.  He ended his junior tennis career in 2019 as the number 1 ranked junior in Venezuela and reached his best International Tennis Federation (ITF) ranking of 182.  He competed in many international singles and doubles championships winning in Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic and Venezuela.  Rafa came to UNM as a freshman in 2020.  He is the captain of the UNM Men’s Tennis team and is a top singles and doubles player.  He aspires to represent his country in the Davis Cup and build a professional tennis career.  Rafa is available for group clinics or private lessons with all levels of juniors and adults (when in the off season for UNM Tennis).  He specializes in teaching adults wishing to improve their game as well as junior players working to play in college or pro tennis in the future.  Rafa will be available for lessons in the off-season.

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Martin Poboril

Martin Poboril has been a tennis coach for more than 12 years.  He was a top 10 junior in the Czech Republic. He played #2 singles and #1 doubles at Oklahoma Christian University, was a member of the NAIA National Champion Team in 2012, and received All-American honors.  In addition to playing tennis, he analyzed data for the Czech FedCup team 2016-2021, is a Certified Master Racquet Technician, and is in the process of being certified as a diet and fitness coach (NASM).  Martin wants to teach all his students to love tennis and enjoy it as much as he does.  He is available for private lessons for ages 10+ and all levels. 

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