ROSEVILLE, Calif. — Steve Dunmore, a 1975 Clinton High School graduate, coached the Sierra Community College women’s tennis team to the 2007 California state championship.

Sierra College, in Rocklin, was the Northern California champion and defeated the Southern California champion Saddleback College of Mission Viejo 5-2 in the title match.

The netters also captured the Big 7 Conference championship with a 10-0 record and went 22-2 for the season.

“Winning the state championship was terrific,” said Dunmore in a telephone interview this week. “Winning the title has been a long-time goal. It is quite a challenge to beat the southern schools for they have so many more programs and a great influx of foreign players.

“Taking the championship was fantastic. It is only the school’s second state championship. We have been in the finals before and ranked in the top four several years, but this year it all came together for us.

“We weren’t rated like we are now when I started eight years ago. We keep showing more progress each year. We have recruited well and players now come to us. It is like (former Iowa University football coach) Hayden Fry used to say, ‘We can reload and not have to rebuild.’”

Dunmore, who lives in Roseville, said there is quite a difference in coaching college tennis versus club play.

“The college gives athletes a chance to develop as players,” he explained. “We get them to graduate, then into four-year schools where they can continue to compete.”

Dunmore, head coach for the men’s and women’s teams at Sierra College and also head pro at Sierra View Country Club in Roseville, was voted California Coach of the Year in 2006 by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association.

He played varsity tennis for the Clinton River Kings from 1972-1975. Dunmore attended Clinton Community College before accepting a tennis scholarship to attend Marycrest College in Davenport from which he graduated in 1982.

Dunmore was an active tournament player in Clinton, the Quad Cities, the Chicago area and Florida. In 1983 he received his United States Professional Association Certification in New York and remains an active member.

He served as the head pro at the Rock Valley Racquet Club in Rock Island, Ill., and the Davenport Country Club from 1982-1985.

Dunmore accepted the assistant coaching position at Sacramento State University and moved to Sacramento in 1986. The Sacramento State men’s team reached a top-10 national ranking that year.

After serving as tennis director and head pro at a 35-court tennis and athletic facility for five years in Roseville, Dunmore moved on to his current position at Sierra Community College.

“I don’t compete anymore though,” he said. “Between the club and college I don’t have the time to play. I’m a career person, not married, and enjoying the California lifestyle. There are so many things to do. It is amazing — so many options including Lake Tahoe, the Sacramento Kings and San Francisco.

“You would be amazed at the number of former Iowans living here,” said Dunmore. “I am still a great backer of the St. Louis Cardinals, the Green Bay Packers and the Hawkeyes.”

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