WORCESTER, Mass. -- Helaine Vrana, a certified United States Professional Tennis Association (USPTA) teaching professional with nearly a decade of coaching experience, has been named the head coach of the women’s tennis program at Clark (Mass.).

Her duties will begin on August 1.

“Coach Vrana’s unique coaching blend of strong, thoughtful instruction, and a fantastic ability to generate positive team cohesion will undoubtedly lead our program forward to future success,” Sean Sullivan said, Clark’s director of athletics and recreation. “We are thrilled she has joined our department and strongly believe she is the right leader at the right time in the development of our roster.”

Most recently, Vrana was the head coach at Saint Peter-Marian High School in Worcester where she led the Guardians to an impressive 15-3 overall record, including a 10-1 mark on their home courts.

In addition to her work Saint Peter-Marian, Vrana is a P-1 teaching professional - the highest tested rating possible – at the Shrewsbury (Mass.) Health and Racquet Club where she coaches all levels of play, including some of the region’s elite level adult and junior players.

A terrific player in her own right, Vrana was named the 2009 USPTA Rookie of the Year in New England and the 2011 USPTA Regional Professional of the Year. She also spent time ranked in the top three in New England in singles and doubles in her career.

Along with her coaching responsibilities, she serves as the chairperson of the nominating committee for the New England Tennis Hall of Fame.

Vrana inherits a roster that will return four of its top five singles players from a squad that won seven matches in 2012 – the program’s most victories since 1991.

“I am very excited to be a part of the Clark University coaching staff,” said Vrana. “I can't wait to get the tennis season started!”