Now in his sixth year as head men’s and women’s tennis coach at Campbell University, David Johnson has successfully re-established the program’s status as a conference contender and regional threat. Johnson joined the Fighting Camel program in August 1998 after serving as head coach of the men’s and women’s teams at Mars Hill College for six years.
Under the direction of Johnson, the women’s team has compiled a five-year record of 80-27 in dual match play. His men have made marked improvements with three winning seasons in the last four years and a 51-51 dual match record in five campaigns.
Last year, the women compiled a record of 13-5, and a berth in the Atlantic Sun final. The top-seeded school in the A-Sun tourney, Campbell was ranked as high as number-63 nationally during the regular season. Senior Kerstin Stockinger concluded her career with 83 singles wins, fifth-highest in the program’s history. Junior Carmen Linder was ranked as high as number-99 nationally during the season. Linder and Stockinger gained first-team all-conference recognition.
In 2003, the men’s program posted back-to-back winning records for the first time since the 1992-93. Junior Martin Parkes and sophomore Sergio Tejada earned a national ranking of number-60 in doubles during the season and finished the year with a 12-3 mark. Jiri Beranek was a second-team all-league choice, while Carlos Campo and Florent Wilpotte were named to the All-Freshman Team.
In 2002, Johnson guided the women to a 16-7 overall record, a 2-2 A-Sun mark and a perfect 7-0 record at home. The Lady Camels advanced to the semifinals and finished the season with a No. 12 ranking in the Southeast Region of the Omni Hotels College Tennis Rankings.
In 2002, the Fighting Camel men went 11-10 overall and were 3-1 in the A-Sun. In the A-Sun tournament, the men defeated Jacksonville State in the first round before being knocked out with a 4-0 loss to Georgia State in their next match. Mardbrink completed his career with 75 singles wins, the fourth highest total in Campbell men’s history
Johnson was named the Atlantic Sun Women’s Tennis Coach of the Year following the 2001 season after guiding the Lady Camels to their first-ever conference championship and a No. 72 national ranking.
The Lady Camels finished the 2001 season with a 21-3 dual match record, their first Atlantic Sun Conference championship, and initial berth in the NCAA regionals where they fell to Duke, which ended the season ranked third in the country. Campbell’s other two losses came at the hands of Old Dominion, which finished at number 35, and Memphis, which concluded the year with a regional ranking of number 12 in the Southeast. Campbell tied with Clemson for 10th place in the Southeast Region marks.
In his first season, Johnson’s women’s team posted a 14-7 dual match record and two of his student-athletes – Katrin Gaber and Teodora Doncheva – received Atlantic Sun Conference recognition. CU’s top three singles players –Gaber, Doncheva and Alexia Erb – combined for a 57-7 singles record. On the men’s side, Johnson’s Fighting Camels boasted a regionally-ranked player – freshman Andreas Mardbrink.
During the 1999 fall campaign, Coach Johnson’s teams continued to demonstrate their marked improvement. The women’s team claimed several singles and doubles championships in tournament action, while Mardbrink not only won the North Carolina State Wolfpack Fall Invitational, but became the first men’s tennis player at Campbell to earn a national ranking.
During his six-year stint at Mars Hill, Johnson led the men’s team to an 80-49 overall record while the women compiled a 53-52 won-lost mark. He was named South Atlantic Conference Coach of the Year in 1993, coached two SAC Players of the Year and two SAC Scholar-Athletes of the Year
A 1981 graduate of Winthrop, Johnson began his collegiate coaching career as men’s coach at USC Spartanburg in 1984, then took over both the men’s and women’s programs at Western Carolina in 1989.
His overall coaching record for men stands at 179-148 in 20 years, while his women’s teams have amassed a 179-121 mark in 15 years.
Johnson was named Southern Conference Men’s Tennis Coach of the Year in 1991. During his college coaching career, the 44-year-old Johnson has coached three players who have represented their countries in Davis Cup competition.
A native of Greenwood, S.C., Johnson has been involved in tennis at a variety of levels. He has served as a teaching professional in Highlands, N.C., and in Tega Cay, S.C. He also coached on the high school level for several years in the Charlotte, N.C., area.
He and his wife Perrine, who serves as assistant coach at Campbell, were married in December 2003.