Yaser Zaatini
Director of Tennis/Head Coach
Men's and Women's Tennis Coaches
PHONE: (423) 439-5262 EMAIL: zaatini@mail.etsu.edu
Yaser Zaatini

Yaser Zaatini enters his third season as Director of ETSU Tennis, serving in his 11th year as head coach of the men's team and third as head of the women's team.

In his time coaching at ETSU, Zaatini has compiled a combined record of 209-83 (.716), with a 182-67 record coaching the men's team and a 27-16 record coaching the women's team.

Zaatini was initially named the assistant coach of the men’s tennis program in the fall of 2002, but took on the larger responsibility of head coach since former head coach Dave Mullins was named as the Director of Intercollgiate Athletics at ETSU. Since being named the men's head coach, the five-time conference “Coach of the Year,” has not only sustained the Bucs great tennis tradition but he has pushed it to a new level, winning 15 conference championships and has made seven trips to the NCAA Tournament, while compiling a 168-58 overall record (.743 winning percentage). On July 9, 2010, Zaatini was named the Director of Tennis at ETSU, gaining direct oversight for both the Buccaneers’ men’s and women’s tennis programs.

In 2011-12, Zaatini coached the ETSU men's team to their sixth consecutive Atlantic Sun Tournament Championship. The Buccaneers finished the season with an overall record of 14-9, but were a perfect 9-0 in Atlantic Sun play to earn the regular season championship and the conference tournament's top seed. Zaatini earned his third Atlantic Sun Coach of the Year award, leading the Bucs to the NCAA Tournament against fifth-seeded Ohio State. The men's team was ranked in 10 of the ITA's 16 polls, ending the year at No. 72 and earning a season-high mark of No. 58. Zaatini's women's team advanced to the Atlantic Sun Tournament Championship finals as well, and nearly pulled off a comeback but ultimately fell short to North Florida. The women finished the season with a mark of 12-9, 7-2 A-Sun.

In his first season as Director of ETSU Tennis, Zaatini led the women to a 15-7 record, their third-consecutive Atlantic Sun regular season championship, and a trip to the NCAA Tournament after winning the A-Sun Tournament championship. The men continued their remarkable success as well, going 17-7 to win their fifth overall A-Sun regular season championship and fifth-consecutive A-Sun Tournament championship.

In 2009-10, the Bucs finished the season with a 16-8 overall mark, which included an A-Sun Tournament title and a historic victory over Alabama in the NCAA Tournament. The Bucs also finished the year as the No. 32 ranked team in the country, while junior Charles Bottoni became just the third Buc in history to earn an individual trip to the NCAA Singles Championship.

In 2009, Zaatini added to the Buc legacy after ETSU posted a 13-8 record, while going unbeaten in Atlantic Sun Conference action again. After sweeping both the A-Sun Regular Season and Tournament titles, Zaatini helped the Bucs extend its A-Sun winning streak to 34 straight matches. Under Zaatini, six Bucs earned all-conference honors in 2009, while former standout Enrique Olivares earned the highest ITA ranking in conference history. Overall, Zaatini’s leadership was evident a season ago as ETSU earned its third straight trip to the NCAA Tournament, while ETSU picked up road wins at No. 38 Wisconsin, while Olivares won the prestigious Southern Intercollegiate tournament.

In 2008, Zaatini continued to lead his to team to wins as the Bucs again went unbeaten in A-Sun play, winning the regular and tournament conference championships. More importantly ETSU dropped Big East conference champion Norte Dame 4-2, in the first round of the NCAA Championships. This marked the first-ever victory for ETSU in the NCAA tournament, as the Bucs finished with a program-best ITA rankings of 37th nationally and seventh regionally. Overall, Zaatini was again named A-Sun Coach of the Year, after the Bucs finished with a 25-4 overall record.

In its previous year Zaatini led ETSU to a 23-5 overall record, while going a perfect 8-0 A-Sun conference play, winning both the regular season and championship titles. Zaatini’s 2007 team defeated No. 31 MTSU, as well as San Francisco, Texas-San Antonio, Nebraska and Wichita State. The Bucs also collected 14 shutout victories, including all eight against conference opponents in both the regular season and league tournament. The 2007 team also wound up in the ITA National Rankings again for the sixth year in a row, at No. 51, as well as a No. 13 regionally.

Before competing fully in the A-Sun, Zaatini led the Bucs to a 20-4 overall record in 2005, while going undefeated for the second consecutive year in SoCon play, extending their SoCon winning streak to 26-0. Zaatini was named the Southern Conference Coach of the Year for the second consecutive season as the Bucs made their fourth NCAA tournament dropping a close match to No. 14 Tennessee.

In 2004, Zaatini led the Bucs to their third NCAA appearance and first of his career as the men’s tennis program went 20-6 overall and was undefeated in SoCon play (10-0), winning both the regular season and championship titles. Zaatini would go on to earn his first of four career “Coach of the Year,” awards.

As a player, Zaatini was the first individual from ETSU to compete in the NCAA Championships and is the only four-time Southern Conference tennis champion in No. 1 singles. In 1992, he was ranked as high as four in the nation in the ITA rankings, the highest ever for a Buccaneer tennis player. Zaatini was also a two-time ITA All-American (1992, 1993), becoming one of two Bucs to earn that prestigious title -- the other being Enrique Olivares in 2008.

After graduation Zaatini became a member of the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP). He made appearances in the 1994 and 1995 Davis Cup tournaments, representing his home country of Venezuela.

He returned to ETSU prior to his head coach assignment in the fall of 1996 to serve as a volunteer assistant with the Buccaneer program. Zaatini then went back to play professionally in Venezuela while managing the Zaatini Tennis Academy in his hometown of Maracay. He has served as the director of the academy for the last six years where Zaatini has taught nationally and internationally ranked juniors and professionals alike.

Zaatini is a 1993 graduate of East Tennessee State University and in 2004 Zaatini was recognized formally for his accomplishments when he was inducted into the ETSU Athletics Hall of Fame. Currently, Zaatini resides in Johnson City with his wife Gloria and their three sons, Yaser, affectionately known as “Yaby,” Sebastian, and Giancarlos.

 

The Zaatini File

As a coach
Education:
    East Tennessee State               1993

Playing Career:
    East Tennessee State          1990-93

Coaching Experience:
   Men's Tennis                              Record    
    2003 East Tennessee State      16-7
    2004 East Tennessee State      20-6
    2005 East Tennessee State      20-4
    2006 East Tennessee State      19-7
    2007 East Tennessee State      23-5
    2008 East Tennessee State      25-4
    2009 East Tennessee State      13-8
    2010 East Tennessee State      16-8
    2011 East Tennessee State      17-7
    2012 East Tennessee State      14-9
    10 Years                                  182-67 (.731)
 
  Women's Tennis                             Record 
    2011 East Tennessee State      15-7 
    2012 East Tennessee State      12-9
    Two Years                                     27-16 (.628)
 
Combined Coaching Record: 209-83 (.716)
 
 
SoCon Coach of the Year
2004
2005
 
Atlantic Sun Coach of the Year
2007
2008
2009
2012

As a player
All-American
1993, 1992

SoCon Player of the Year
1991, 1992, 1993

SoCon Tournament MVP
1990, 1993

No. 1 Singles Championships
1990, 1991, 1992, 1993

All-Time ETSU Singles Wins List
Single Season Wins:
      Name                          Year    Wins
1.   Yaser Zaatini             1991      42
2.   Yaser Zaatini             1992      39
3.   Enrique Olivarse       2009      38
4.   Marcos Pavlovich     1999      33
5.   Yaser Zaatini             1993      31
      Todd Hall                   1986      31
      Mark Lupton-Smith         1988      31

Career Wins:
1.   Yaser Zaatini................... 134
2.   Enrique Olivares............. 118
3.   Gustavo Gomez.............. 113

Men's and Women's Tennis Coaches
Yaser Zaatini
Director of Tennis/Head Coach
Ricardo Rojas
Assistant Coach
Paola Stevens
Graduate Assistant
WSOC Radford Johnson City, Tenn.
Aug 22, 7:00 p.m. ETSU
MSOC ETSU Blacksburg, Va.
Aug 23, 7:00 p.m. Virginia Tech (Exh.)
WSOC ETSU Cookeville, Tenn.
Aug 24, 1:00 p.m. Tennessee Tech
WSOC Appalachian St. Johnson City, Tenn.
Aug 28, 7:00 p.m. ETSU
MSOC ETSU Richmond, Va.
Aug 29, 7:00 p.m. William & Mary
MCC Covered Bridge Open Boone, N.C.
Aug 29
WCC Covered Bridge Open Boone, N.C.
Aug 29
VB ETSU Charlotte, N.C.
Aug 29, 9:00 a.m. Morgan State University
VB ETSU Charlotte, N.C.
Aug 29, 5:00 p.m. California State University, Sacramento
VB ETSU Charlotte, N.C.
Aug 30, 12:00 p.m. UNC Charlotte
WSOC Campbell Johnson City, Tenn.
Aug 31, 1:00 p.m. ETSU
MSOC ETSU Richmond, Va.
Aug 31, 3:30 p.m. VCU
WSOC South Carolina St. Johnson City. Tenn.
Sep 2, 6:00 p.m. ETSU
VB ETSU Fairfax, Va.
Sep 5, 3:00 p.m. The College of William and Mary
VB ETSU Fairfax, Va.
Sep 5, 7:00 p.m. George Mason University
WSOC Alabama A&M Johnson City, Tenn.
Sep 5, 7:00 p.m. ETSU
VB ETSU Fairfax, Va.
Sep 6, 12:00 p.m. University of Maryland