Head Coach Chris Garner

Garner Bio
Contact Information:
413-542-8559 (office)

Chris Garner led the Lord Jeffs into the national spotlight in only his second season at the helm, making Amherst the Northeast's team to beat in 2009-10. After missing out on the NCAA tournament with a 10-9 overall record in his head coaching debut, Garner and the Jeffs shattered program records last year by finishing with a 28-7 record and advancing to the national title match for the first time ever. Two of Amherst's losses came at the hands of Middlebury College, but the Jeffs got their revenge with a win in the national quarterfinals that ended a stretch of 15 consecutive losses to the Panthers. Amherst continued to turn heads with a win over top-ranked defending national champion Washington University (MO) in the semifinal round, but the Jeffs' run ended with a setback to UC Santa Cruz in the championship match. No Amherst team had ever advanced past the national quarterfinals prior to the 2008-09 season.

Garner brought to Amherst valuable experience as both a player and coach. He began his first season as assistant men’s tennis coach at Ohio State in 2005, and was instrumental in the Buckeyes’ No. 5 national year-end ranking, which marked the highest ranking in school history. That year, OSU went undefeated in Big-Ten play, winning both the regular season and conference tournament championships. Ohio State returned as one of the best teams in the country in 2006, as Garner helped lead the team to a No. 3 national year-end ranking, again going undefeated in conference play and winning the Big-Ten tournament. Prior to Ohio State, Garner spent one season as an assistant coach at the University of Colorado, and five years prior to that as a private tennis coach. From 1998 to 2003 he trained players of all levels, ranging from beginners to some of the best players in the world.

Garner’s national dominance as a player began in 1983, when he was ranked the No. 1 player in the U.S. in the 14-and-under age group. After earning the No. 1 national ranking in the 16-and-under group in 1984, he was ranked No. 3 in the country in the 18-and-under group from 1985 to 1986. Garner’s success earned him a spot on the U.S. Junior Davis Cup Team from 1985 to 1987, as he racked up 12 National Junior titles before moving on to the collegiate level. Georgia was fortunate to have Garner for the 1987-88 season, as he earned All-America honors as a Bulldog in 1988. He left Georgia and saw great success as a professional player, reaching the Round of 16 at the Australian Open in 1993. He picked up significant wins over several great players, including Patrick Rafter, Yevgeny Kafelnikov and Pat McEnroe, earning an Association of Tennis Professionals singles ranking of 120 in 1991. Garner and his wife, Monika, have two young sons, Luke and Finn, and a baby daughter, Gigi.

Garner will once again be joined by assistant coach Matt Leitl

View Chris Garner's career coaching record