Coach Marcy Cunniff began teaching at Sportsmen’s in November 2020, but she is a seasoned tennis professional whose history and experience speak for themselves.
She first picked up a racquet when she was seven years old. Her sister started playing at their local Parks and Recreation center in Quincy. They played doubles together throughout high school at Archbishop Williams High School in Braintree. They played in the New England Lawn Tennis Association (NELTA) and were ranked 9th in the Junior Doubles division. Marcy was also ranked 6th in the country in the 18-and-under level.
She then went on to play at the University of Southern Florida in both singles and doubles. Marcy struggled to find a job out of college that she loved more than tennis. With the support and encouragement from her family, Marcy pursued teaching tennis full-time.
“Tennis in New England is a hard industry to break into because it is not a year-round sport,” Marcy said. “One advantage I have is that I am a female, and there aren’t many females in the industry.”
I want people to see the value of the lesson. They will enjoy themselves more if I can help bring that out for them.
Marcy says another advantage she has as a tennis professional is that she has an extensive background in teaching tennis. She is a versatile coach who does not have just one niche.
“With the younger kids, I like to bring the fun,” Marcy said. “I enjoy the lighter side in teaching; making sure that they learn to love the sport is the first part.”
Marcy says that she also enjoys teaching the fundamentals and improving her clients’ game, but it is all about the high energy and bringing people together that Marcy enjoys the most.
“I want people to see the value of the lesson. They will enjoy themselves more if I can help bring that out for them,” she said.
Marcy has known about Sportsmen’s for years and even played here in the 1970s. When she was brought on as a coach, she felt lucky and honored to be a part of the team.
“Sportsmen’s is unmatched by any other tennis club,” she said. “Their mission is so different to other clubs that there is no comparison.”
She says that the tennis program here, which is just the tip of the iceberg of what Sportsmen’s offers, is so dedicated to its members. The structure and discipline of the program begin with a “gem” of a director and it trickles down from there. The coaches are passionate about what they do, and “you can only be in this industry if you love what you do,” says Marcy. When Marcy is not playing tennis, which she says is not very often, she likes to go to Cape Cod, and try different restaurants in the city. She is also a big fan of the Boston sports teams.