Coach Tom Lloyd inherited a 4-21 in his first year at Loyola Marymount, but he is quick to add that “we’ve been winning ever since,” posting 14 wins that first season. Now in his third year at the helm of Men’s Tennis, Lloyd finds himself nurturing talent from across the globe (the team includes players from Chile, Spain, Australia, and Germany), teaching his team to juggle student and athlete responsibilities while staying competitive within the collegiate ranks. “We should be in the Top 30 every year,” he adds, noting that Pepperdine is LMU’s biggest rival, “and there’s no reason we can’t fill those shoes.”
A native of Yorba Linda, CA and three-time all-league performer at Esperanza High School, Lloyd sees a bright future for athletes competing in Southern California. “The tennis we see here everyday (in SoCal) is some of the best around,” he says.
On the other side, LMU’s Women’s Tennis program struggled in recent years, ranking at the bottom of pre-season rankings. But under new coach Agustin Moreno, the program has picked up momentum and shown signs of a resurgence. The team’s preseason rank jumped four notches to #6, another rung on the team’s ladder of newfound success.
“Our goal now is to reach the NCAA tournament,” Moreno says with confidence. “We’re not going to just turn around and win the tournament, but the first step is to get there.”
Moreno, a 1988 Olympian for Mexico who served as the nation’s Fed Cup head coach in February, admits that in under two years as coach, the school missed out on opportunities to recruit players who’d already committed to other programs before his arrival. Now, he’s got his sights set on talented local and international players who are perfect for LMU’s educational and athletic programs, including top ranked players from Europe.
This year, with a relatively young squad and four-year #1 singles Jessica Perez leading the charge, Moreno anticipates another broad step forward for LMU tennis.