Keith Puryear is in his seventh season as the Navy women's tennis head coach in 2014-15.
Puryear is the only head coach in the history of the Navy women's tennis program. He mentored a club program in his first year during the 2008-09 season and the program has been at the varsity level ever since.
Puryear needed just five seasons to reach the 100-win mark at Navy as he reached the milestone during the 2013-14 season. He currently owns a 101-30 record in five varsity seasons in Annapolis. Puryear has led the Mids to an 18-3 record during the Patriot League Regular Season and the team is 77-15 in home dual matches.
Puryear came to Annapolis after spending 19 years as the head tennis coach at UMBC. Puryear coached the men's team for all 19 seasons, while also coaching the women's team for his final 17 seasons. In 22 seasons as a women's tennis head coach, Puryear owns an all-time record of 316-157. Combined with his 228-176 career record as men's tennis head coach, Puryear's all-time combined coaching record is an impressive 544-333.
Puryear has led the Mids to at least the Patriot League Semifinals in each of their first five seasons as a conference member. Navy also made three straight trips to the league championship match from 2011-13.
Last year, Puryear led Navy to a 21-8 overall record, the program's fourth straight 20-win season. Navy advanced to the Patriot League Semifinals and the Mids rattled off seven straight dual wins from late January to early February. Puryear led Navy to a milestone on April 13 when a 7-0 sweep of Loyola gave Navy's its 100th program win.
Three Midshipmen earned All-Patriot League honors with senior Erin Snook being named to the all-league first team. Senior captain Darien Sears and sophomore Sam Droop were both selected to the all-league second team. Snook graduated as Navy's all-time leader in career in singles wins (90), doubles wins (61), combined wins (151) and career singles dual wins (151).
Additionally, sophomore Mikaela Carlson was named to the Patriot League All-Academic Team. She became the first Navy women's tennis player to earn academic all-league honors.
In 2013, with his first full recruiting class serving as the team's leaders as seniors, Puryear's squad compiled a 25-5 record, setting a school record for wins. After starting the year with a 2-3 record, the Midshipmen ran off a school-record 17 straight wins and would finish the year by winning 23 of its last 25 matches. The Midshipmen reached the Patriot League Tournament finals for the third straight year and finished the year ranked 10th in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association's (ITA) Atlantic region rankings. Three players earned all-Patriot League accolades, including 2013 grad Emani Decquir, who was honored as Navy's first major award winner, the Patriot League Player of the Year.
Puryear would wins his 500th career match early in the year in a 7-0 blanking of Atlantic 10 power St. Bonaventure and during the Mids' win streak, Navy recorded victories over regional powers Richmond, Drexel, James Madison and Delaware.
In 2012, Puryear guided the Midshipmen back to the Patriot League Tournament finals with a 20-3 overall mark and a 4-0 Patriot League regular-season record while earning the tournament's top seed for the first time in school history. The team ran off 11 straight wins to start the season and finished a sterling 15-1 at home while four players earned all-Patriot League accolades. For his efforts, Puryear was named the Wilson / ITA Atlantic Region Coach of the Year. He accomplished all of this with a lineup that included zero seniors.
In 2011, Puryear led the upstart Navy women's tennis program to the Patriot League Tournament finals and a 3-0 Patriot League regular-season mark. The Midshipmen finished the year with a 22-10 record, starting the season with an 11-4 mark, then winning nine of their last 10 matches. Three members of the squad were named to the all-Patriot League team and Puryear was named the Patriot League Coach of the Year by his peers.
In 2010, with a line-up that featured four freshmen quite regularly, the Midshipmen posted a 13-4 overall record, a 2-1 Patriot League mark and a trip to the Patriot League Tournament semifinals.
Four of his recruiting classes have been honored as top mid-major classes by the website TennisRecruiting.net and several student-athletes have earned academic and national honors, including 2013 grad Stefanie Ton, who was named the Atlantic Region's recipient for the Intercollegiate Tennis Association's (ITA) Arthur Ashe Leadership & Sportsmanship Award.
Prior to arriving in Annapolis, he won over 440 dual matches while coaching both the men's and women's team at UMBC. His Retriever squads won 11 conference titles from 1998 to 2007 and he has won almost 60 percent of all his dual-meet competitions.
Off the court, Puryear was inducted into the UMBC Athletics Hall of Fame (Class of 2012) and in May 2009, Puryear joined the United States Tennis Association Board of Directors, adding to his already-long list of accomplishments.
Puryear won 443 matches and 10 conference coach-of-the-year honors in a decade as the head men's and women's coach at UMBC. His men's teams have appeared in five NCAA Tournaments (2000-2003, 2007), while the women have also made five trips (1999-2003) to the NCAA tournament.
Puryear's squads are also successful in the classroom. Navy has a number of players named to the Patriot League Academic Honor Roll accolades, and UMBC's women's tennis squad posted a grade-point average of 3.49 in 2008, best amongst all the programs in the America East Conference.
Puryear is a certified USPTA professional and instructor for the Tennis Institute, where he coaches several MATA and nationally-ranked juniors. In May 2009, Puryear joined the Board of Directors with the United States Tennis Association (Maryland) as an at-large director.
He also plays at the competitive level in both Maryland and in the Mid-Atlantic Tennis Association, where he has been ranked in the top five in the state and has been ranked as high as No. 2 in doubles on four different occasions. In 1998, Puryear was ranked No. 1 in the state in the men's 35 and older, and in 1999, was No. 6 in the Mid-Atlantic Region.
Puryear played two years of tennis at Howard University before transferring to UMBC. Following a year at UMBC, Puryear enlisted in the United States Marine Corps where he served from 1983-88. Returning to his studies at UMBC, Puryear graduated with a B.S. in economics in the spring of 1990.
Puryear was selected Big South Conference Women's Coach of the Year in 1997-98, and was the NEC Women's Coach of the Year in 1999 and 2001. In addition, he was selected as the NEC Men's Coach of the Year for 1999-2000 and 2000-01. In 2002, he accomplished a double, earning both men's and women's coach-of-the-year honors, and in 2003, he captured the women's award for the third-straight year.
Puryear is certified as a tennis instructor by the USPTA and USPTR. In 2009, Puryear was certified as a High Performance Training Coach by the United States Tennis Association.
Puryear and his wife, Venida, have two daughters, Jasmynn (24) and Keri (18).