Washington College Alumni Shine at the U.S. Open


Teammates from powerhouse Shoremen tennis teams in the 1980s each coached doubles teams in this year’s tournament.

Alumnus Ross Coleman and Sophie Chang, the player he coached at this year's US Open

Alumnus Ross Coleman and Sophie Chang, the player he coached at this year's US Open.

September 1 dawned hot and humid as two Washington College alums stepped out with their players in the third round of play at the 2023 U.S. Open Tennis Championships in Flushing Meadows, New York.   

Dave Marshall ’88 and Ross Coleman ’87, former Washington College tennis teammates and close friends, coached their doubles teams on courts side-by-side at this year’s Open with Coleman’s Sophie Chang and partner Alycia Parks and Marshall’s Édouard Roger-Vasselin and Santiago González each winning their matches that day.

Nearly 40 years after their time on campus, Marshall and Coleman continue to achieve amazing results in tennis, coaching at the highest professional levels.  

In the fall of 1984, Marshall joined Coleman at Washington College and the two would become integral players on the Shoremen’s tennis team for the next three years—writing their names into the College record books. They were “top six” on the first Washington College team to qualify for the NCAA Division III National Tournament in 1986 and members of the first team to reach the national semifinals the following year. 

Their former coach, Fred Wyman, hailed them as “foundation blocks,” who helped establish a tennis dynasty at Washington College that lasted for the next 20 years. Indeed, the program won two national championships, played in several Final Fours, won 20 conference championships and produced countless All-Americans.  

Following their time at Washington, the two took different paths to reach the top of the professional tennis world.   

David Marshall smiles for the camera with two players he coached.David Marshall smiles for the camera with Santiago González (Left) and Édouard Roger-Vasselin (Right), whom he coached at the U.S. Open.Marshall, who is a Grand Slam champion coach winning Wimbledon, the U.S. Open and Australian Open, has his own business, David Marshall Tennis & Fitness, in Lewes, Delaware. He also served from 1982 to 2009 as the tennis director at the Sea Colony Tennis Center in Bethany Beach, Delaware, which was honored as a top 5 club in the nation by Tennis magazine.    

Early in his coaching career, Marshall coached numerous nationally ranked junior players as well as several NCAA national champions. A successful college coach, he guided his alma mater to two conference finals, setting records for most wins in a year and most consecutive wins. Under his leadership, the Shorewomen reached two conference finals and produced four nationally ranked players, including one All-America and several All-Conference Players. Following his stint at Washington College, he led Delaware State University to the MEAC North title and was voted HBCU National Coach of the Year. During this time, he continued to play competitive tennis, ranking #1 in the USA senior doubles.  

Marshall has coached four professional doubles teams to the #1 ranking in the world and was awarded the prestigious Tom Gullickson Touring Coach of the year award on the professional circuit. He eventually connected with Dave MacPherson, who hired him as part of the coaching staff for the Bryan brothers, known as the best doubles team in the history of men’s tennis. Marshall went on to become co-coach of the Bryans and is credited with helping them to regain the world’s #1 ranking.   

Marshall has had great success coaching professional players, including ATP stars Bob and Mike Bryan, Giuliana Olmos, Gabriella Dabrowski, Kaia Kanepi, Nicholas Mahut, Jack Sock, Ingrid Martins, Alexandra Panova, Ryler DeHeart, Megan Fudge, Lukasz Kubot, Austin Krajicek and Benoit Paire. In addition, he has worked with Madison Brengle for years, including a successful run in 2021, which included two titles, raising her ranking on the WTA tour from 90 to 50.  The Tennis Channel has called Marshall “one of the best coaches in the business.” 

After graduating, Coleman also went on to become one of the top coaches in the sport, coaching players in four Grand Slams. He became a teaching pro and has been the director of tennis at the Suburban Club in Baltimore for the last 16 years. He founded the Hawkeye Tennis Academy in 1991 which has seen more than 70 of its players go on to great college careers at Princeton, Cornell, Virginia, Wake Forest, Alabama, and Dartmouth, to name a few. Throughout his career he has coached several top 15 amateur players in the country including one who reached a #1 ranking nationally, with several ranking high in the Mid-Atlantic Tennis Association (MATA).  

Additionally, Coleman has coached four competitors on the pro tour and currently works with Sophie Chang. During his time coaching her, Chang who went on to skyrocket up the MATA junior rankings, turned pro at 18, and has been on the WTA Tour for eight years. She has qualified and played in every Grand Slam tournament—Australian Open, The French Open, Wimbledon and the U.S. Open—under Coleman’s guidance, earning 26 professional titles (3 singles, 26 doubles).

Coleman continues to recruit players for Washington College’s tennis teams.  

“If you would have told me 40 years ago that I would still be doing tennis, I would have said that sounds right,” said Coleman. “I love it, I live it, that is my passion.” 

“Ross and I have both learned that success is not final nor is failure,” said Marshall. “Success opens doors to more success with hard work, while failure makes you work harder to earn success.”