Monday, May 14, 2012 | 1:50 p.m.
UNLV’s golf team — ranked No. 7 in the country — will head this week to the NCAA regional’s without coach Dwaine Knight, who’s recovering from a recent surgery. In his place, assistant coach JC Deacon will lead the team in the Greensboro Regional this Thursday-Saturday as it attempts to qualify for the national tournament.
“I have full confidence in JC to lead our team at the NCAA Regional,” Knight said in a statement. “I know our guys will respond and play well in Greensboro, N.C., to advance to the finals. It’s been a very special season for this team and I am very proud of them.”
Last week, Knight underwent successful surgery to remove melanoma cancer from his foot.
“We expect a full recovery,” Knight said. “… My goal is to rejoin the team at the national finals at The Rivera Country Club in a couple of weeks.”
In order to be one of the 30 teams at the NCAA Championship, the second-seeded Rebels must finish as one of the top five teams at their regional, which includes 14 teams. This is UNLV’s 24th consecutive trip to a regional, an NCAA record.
The Rebels’ last trip to the NCAAs was a 21st-place finish in 2010.
Softball begins national search for new coach
The Rebels will have a new softball coach next season, as UNLV Athletics Director Jim Livengood announced Monday that he would not renew Pete Manarino’s contract.
“We appreciate coach Manarino’s efforts over the last four years at UNLV,” Livengood said in a statement. “However, the university felt a change in direction was necessary for our softball program.”
Manarino made the NCAA Tournament in his first season and tailed off from there, finishing 2012 with a 22-27 overall record and a fourth-place finish in the Mountain West. He went 113-86 at UNLV.
Livengood said he would begin a national search for a new coach immediately.