Skyhawk Soccer | Chris Penn - Graduate Assistant
Chris Penn has been a graduate assistant with the Skyhawk soccer team since 2011. He primarily works with the goalkeepers.
In 2012, Penn helped lead the Skyhawks to their second NCAA Tournament appearance in as many seasons, as UT Martin competed throughout before narrowly falling 1-0 to Southeastern Conference power Kentucky. UT Martin would conclude the 2012 season with a program record .659 winning percentage on its way to the first-ever outright Ohio Valley Conference regular season championship.
Last season, Penn worked directly with goalkeepers Mariah Klenke and Sarah Tompkins, who combined for a miniscule 0.93 Goals Against Average and a program record eight shutouts. Klenke was named to the All-OVC first team, All-OVC Tournament squad and was the Most Valuable Player of the OVC Tournament. In just two seasons, Klenke is already UT Martin's all-time leader in victories with 21.
In his first season as a member of the UT Martin coaching staff in 2011, the Skyhawks won their first-ever OVC Tournament title. With Penn on staff, UT Martin would win 14 matches - four more than any other team in school history - and make an appearance in the NCAA Tournament for the first time in the program’s 14-year tenure.
Penn directly worked with a pair of record-setting goalkeepers in his first year at UT Martin. He coached Klenke, who set a school record with 10 victories during her freshman campaign. He also tutored senior Lauren MacKenzie, who graduated as the program’s all-time leader in shutouts (10).
Penn was a four-year letterman under legendary head coach Pepe Fernandez at Maryville College, a Division-III powerhouse located in Maryville, Tenn.
In Penn’s four seasons at Maryville (2007-10), the Scots posted a 53-16-6 overall record, including a remarkable 20-1-1 record in Great South Athletic Conference play. During Penn’s tenure, Maryville claimed four GSAC championships and four GSAC tournament titles. Penn played goalkeeper at Maryville, allowing just 10 goals in 943:07 spread out over 20 matches for a Goals Against Average of 0.95. He tallied 32 saves and recorded three shutouts.
Prior to his collegiate career, Penn prepped at Chattanooga School for the Arts and Science, where he established himself as one of the best goalkeepers in the Chattanooga area. Playing under coaches Ron Nance and Patrick Daverson, Penn was a four-year letterman on the Patriots’ varsity squad. He was a two-time Best of the Preps selection and also earned his team’s Defensive MVP award twice. He helped lead CSAS to an undefeated regular-season record and No. 1 ranking in the state of Tennessee as a senior.
At UT Martin, Penn is pursuing a Master’s degree in international business.