Skip to main content

Champions Still By Thad Mumau

02/01/2008 06:02PM, Published by Anonymous, Categories:



They are 44 now. Margit Hicks is a Fayetteville attorney concentrating on family law. Lisa Wheless is a PTA Volunteer of the Year in Manteo. Each is the mother of two children. They are also owners of a North Carolina tennis record that has stood for 27 years.

In the fall of 1980, the Monaco Twins completed a reign of dominance that has gone unmatched. They won four state doubles tennis championships, finishing with an amazing record of 117-1.

Lisa and Margit were double versions of Clark Kent, mild-mannered and studious off the tennis court. On it, with red capes flying, they were fierce and invincible competitors. They were Super. They were simply unbeatable.

Featured in Sports Illustrated magazine, their names screaming across banner newspaper headlines on a regular basis every tennis season, the Monaco Twins were the rage, the bomb(s) in today’s vernacular. But all of the fame and glory was lost on them. In fact, the acclaim was amusing to them. It still is.

“All we did was play a sport,” Hicks says. “Sure, we played it pretty well, but it was, after all, just a game. I never thought it was a big deal. I still don’t.”

“Isn’t that funny?” Wheless asks. “Everyone thought what we did was so big, and we didn’t. You want to know how much we talked about it? After winning a match, in the car with our mother, we said, ‘Take us to McDonald’s.’ That’s what we were thinking about.”

This is not an act. It is the way the twins are, the way they were throughout their four-year championship run. Both were unassuming, humble, shy, trying to stay out of photographs instead of jumping into them. The girls were unaware of just what a huge story they were writing.

“We were never caught up with ourselves,” Wheless says. “Our parents taught us to be humble and tolerant.”

“I have always been thankful to our mother and father (Margit Monaco and the late Stephen George Monaco),” Hicks says. “We lived normal lives; we weren’t looking for attention, and we were surprised by all the attention we got.”

This is not to say tennis was unimportant.

“Oh, it mattered,” Hicks says. “It mattered a lot. We started playing when we were six. Our mom had played, and she got us involved. Our first goal was to beat Mom. Tennis was huge back then with McEnroe, Nastase and other pros who were real popular.

“When Lisa and I went into a tennis match, we never let our guard down. We were taught that we couldn’t depend on an opponent making errors, that we had to force them. We were always the aggressors.

“We never really talked about tennis. We just liked to play and we had fun playing. Winning was a plus, but what we really enjoyed was working at it and getting better. Lisa and I are both perfectionists.”

“We pushed ourselves more to improve than we did to win,” Wheless says. “Our mother did not drive or push us; she encouraged us. Margit and I never felt pressure.”

The twins were outstanding students, members of the National Honor Society, and outside of tennis, academics took up most of their time.

“We were big-time nerds,” Hicks recalls. “We thought it was more important to do well on a test than win a tournament. We had no social life, and that’s the way we wanted it.”

“Our upbringing was very sheltered,” Wheless adds. “We were nerds … the braces, the pimples, the books. Margit and I really liked being students, and we were very serious about it.”

Following graduation from Terry Sanford High School in 1981, the sisters attended UNC-Chapel Hill, where they were roommates and played on the Tar Heels’ tennis team. They both majored in art history and then went to Campbell University, Margit earning her law degree and Lisa getting her masters of education in school guidance and counseling.

They were married within six months of each other. They were also pregnant at the same time. Margit and Robby Hicks have two sons, Alex and Michael, who are nine and seven years of age, respectively. Jay and Lisa Wheless have a nine-year-old son, Stephen, and a seven-year-old daughter, Elizabeth.

Neither twin has been playing much tennis.

“I was burned out after Chapel Hill,” Wheless says. “I played on the satellite pro tour a little, but my heart wasn’t in it. When I came to Manteo, I gave some tennis lessons and played quite a bit for a while. Then I stopped altogether.

“I took up running, which I still do, and I give lessons for a week at clinics twice a year. I used to be a school counselor. Now I spend time with my children, and I’m very much into the PTA. I was voted 2007 Volunteer of the Year at Manteo Elementary School, and I am very proud of that.”

While Wheless’ children have taken no interest in tennis, Hicks’ sons have just started playing. And that has brought their mother back to the courts.

“It is fun to go out and hit the ball with them,” Hicks says, “but I can’t see myself getting real competitive again. My number-one goal is to be a good mother. My mom and dad were good teachers. Lisa and I learned from them how to be good parents. My children are my blessings.”

The Monaco Twins were tremendous teammates and even better friends – the best of friends.

“We always have been,” Hicks says. “Even though Lisa lives far away, we remain very close.”



latest news and events


  • Tai Chi for Health

    01/24/2017
    10:00AM

    Practice this flowing eastern exercise with instructor Rich Martin while overlooking the Garden. ...


It looks like we don't have any events for this date. You can always add an event.

  • Slimming Event: Chance to Win!

    01/26/2017
    09:00AM — 11:00AM

    Get your girlfriends together for this fun and informative event and a chance to win a FREE sessi...


  • Classic Nashville Roadshow

    01/26/2017
    02:00PM — 04:00PM

    Classic Nashville Roadshow brings you some of the most unforgettable songs in country history jus...


  • Hang Out Thursdays & Social Ballroom Dance

    01/26/2017
    07:00PM — 11:00PM

    Come join the fun every 4th Thursday of the month! Hang Out Thursdays & Social Ballroom Dance V...


  • The Museum of the Cape Fear will sponsor the 16th Annual Civil War Quiz Bowl. Contestants will te...


  • Fall in love with The Little Mermaid all over again, featuring Ariel, Sebastian and more in this ...


  • Handel: Water Music

    01/26/2017
    07:30PM

    Thursday, January 26th, 2017 | 7:30pm St. John’s Episcopal Church 302 Green St., Fayetteville, ...


  • 5th Annual Evening of Excellence & Expo

    01/27/2017
    12:00PM — 08:00PM

    You are cordially invited to the biggest beauty & aesthetics event in North Carolina!  View the e...


  • Classic Nashville Roadshow

    01/27/2017
    02:00PM — 04:00PM

    Classic Nashville Roadshow brings you some of the most unforgettable songs in country history jus...


  • Classic Nashville Roadshow

    01/27/2017
    08:00PM — 10:00PM

    Classic Nashville Roadshow brings you some of the most unforgettable songs in country history jus...


  • Birthday Dance & Potluck

    01/27/2017
    09:00PM — 01:00AM

    Celebrate your birthday month with others every 4th Friday of the month! Birthday dance & potluc...


  • Yoga for Runners

    01/21/2017
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    Join The Runners Spot & Clare from Clarityoga for a yoga clinic for runners on January 21st at 9:...


  • Be a part of Fayetteville’s newest premier event, Fayetteville’s Ultimate Lip Sync Showdown, to b...


  • Exploring Vegan Options Food Education Event

    01/21/2017
    02:00PM — 04:00PM

    Join local vegan chef, Ameen Brooks, for this introductory workshop on veganism! This is the perf...


  • Fall in love with The Little Mermaid all over again, featuring Ariel, Sebastian and more in this ...


  • Fayetteville FireAntz Game

    01/21/2017
    07:30PM

    Come see the Fayetteville FireAntz, a professional minor-league hockey team, battle it out agains...


  • Classic Nashville Roadshow

    01/21/2017
    08:00PM — 10:00PM

    Classic Nashville Roadshow brings you some of the most unforgettable songs in country history jus...


  • Be a part of Fayetteville’s newest premier event, Fayetteville’s Ultimate Lip Sync Showdown, to b...


  • Classic Nashville Roadshow

    01/22/2017
    02:00PM — 04:00PM

    Classic Nashville Roadshow brings you some of the most unforgettable songs in country history jus...


  • Hot Chocolate 4 Miler

    01/22/2017
    04:00PM — 05:00PM

    Who doesn't love a hot cup of cocoa on those cold winter days? We sure do! Join The Runners Spot ...


  • The HappyFeet League is on weekends. It is offered to children ages 2-6 years old. Each game ...


  • Tai Chi for Health

    01/24/2017
    10:00AM

    Practice this flowing eastern exercise with instructor Rich Martin while overlooking the Garden. ...


  • Slimming Event: Chance to Win!

    01/26/2017
    09:00AM — 11:00AM

    Get your girlfriends together for this fun and informative event and a chance to win a FREE sessi...


  • Classic Nashville Roadshow

    01/26/2017
    02:00PM — 04:00PM

    Classic Nashville Roadshow brings you some of the most unforgettable songs in country history jus...


  • Hang Out Thursdays & Social Ballroom Dance

    01/26/2017
    07:00PM — 11:00PM

    Come join the fun every 4th Thursday of the month! Hang Out Thursdays & Social Ballroom Dance V...


  • The Museum of the Cape Fear will sponsor the 16th Annual Civil War Quiz Bowl. Contestants will te...


  • Fall in love with The Little Mermaid all over again, featuring Ariel, Sebastian and more in this ...


  • Handel: Water Music

    01/26/2017
    07:30PM

    Thursday, January 26th, 2017 | 7:30pm St. John’s Episcopal Church 302 Green St., Fayetteville, ...


  • 5th Annual Evening of Excellence & Expo

    01/27/2017
    12:00PM — 08:00PM

    You are cordially invited to the biggest beauty & aesthetics event in North Carolina!  View the e...


  • Classic Nashville Roadshow

    01/27/2017
    02:00PM — 04:00PM

    Classic Nashville Roadshow brings you some of the most unforgettable songs in country history jus...


  • Classic Nashville Roadshow

    01/27/2017
    08:00PM — 10:00PM

    Classic Nashville Roadshow brings you some of the most unforgettable songs in country history jus...


  • Birthday Dance & Potluck

    01/27/2017
    09:00PM — 01:00AM

    Celebrate your birthday month with others every 4th Friday of the month! Birthday dance & potluc...


  • CountrySide's All American Dream Meet

    01/28/2017
    08:00AM — 10:00PM

    January 28 & 29, 2017 Off-Site Location: Reid Ross Classical School 3200 Ramsey Street Faye...


  • Classic Nashville Roadshow

    01/28/2017
    08:00PM — 10:00PM

    Classic Nashville Roadshow brings you some of the most unforgettable songs in country history jus...


  • CountrySide's All American Dream Meet

    01/29/2017
    08:00AM — 08:00PM

    January 28 & 29, 2017 Off-Site Location: Reid Ross Classical School 3200 Ramsey Street Faye...


  • Soup & Sandwich Fundraiser

    01/29/2017
    12:15PM

    All are welcome to join us for this delicious fundraiser to make our church handicap accessible. ...


  • Classic Nashville Roadshow

    01/29/2017
    02:00PM — 04:00PM

    Classic Nashville Roadshow brings you some of the most unforgettable songs in country history jus...


  • Child Trafficking Forum

    01/30/2017
    06:30PM

    The Child Advocacy Center and the Fayetteville Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc...


  • The HappyFeet League is on weekends. It is offered to children ages 2-6 years old. Each game ...


  • Tai Chi for Health

    01/31/2017
    10:00AM

    Practice this flowing eastern exercise with instructor Rich Martin while overlooking the Garden. ...


  • Fall in love with The Little Mermaid all over again, featuring Ariel, Sebastian and more in this ...


  • Classic Nashville Roadshow

    02/02/2017
    02:00PM — 04:00PM

    Classic Nashville Roadshow brings you some of the most unforgettable songs in country history jus...


  • Classic Nashville Roadshow

    02/03/2017
    02:00PM — 04:00PM

    Classic Nashville Roadshow brings you some of the most unforgettable songs in country history jus...


  • Super Bowl Pub Run

    02/03/2017
    06:30PM — 08:30PM

    Wear your favorite Football Jersey and go for a 2 mile run/walk or 3.5 mile run/walk. We will be...


  • Fayetteville FireAntz Game

    02/03/2017
    07:30PM

    Come see the Fayetteville FireAntz, a professional minor-league hockey team, battle it out agains...


  • Didg Revolution is composed of Darren Liebman, Rob Thomas, and Tanya Gerard. Thomas and Gerard ar...


  • Classic Nashville Roadshow

    02/03/2017
    08:00PM — 10:00PM

    Classic Nashville Roadshow brings you some of the most unforgettable songs in country history jus...


  • Fall in love with The Little Mermaid all over again, featuring Ariel, Sebastian and more in this ...


  • Fayetteville FireAntz Game

    02/04/2017
    07:30PM

    Come see the Fayetteville FireAntz, a professional minor-league hockey team, battle it out agains...


  • Classic Nashville Roadshow

    02/04/2017
    08:00PM — 10:00PM

    Classic Nashville Roadshow brings you some of the most unforgettable songs in country history jus...


  • Classic Nashville Roadshow

    02/05/2017
    02:00PM — 04:00PM

    Classic Nashville Roadshow brings you some of the most unforgettable songs in country history jus...


  • 5k Beginner Running Series

    02/05/2017
    04:00PM — 05:00PM

    4 week Training series: Let the Runners Spot help you train for your 1st 5k this year. This is ...


  • Tai Chi for Health

    02/07/2017
    10:00AM

    Practice this flowing eastern exercise with instructor Rich Martin while overlooking the Garden. ...


  • Free Diabetes Clinic

    02/08/2017
    09:30AM — 12:00PM

    Better Health will offer a free diabetes clinic at the Spring Lake Senior Center, located on 301 ...


  • The HappyFeet League is on weekends. It is offered to children ages 2-6 years old. Each game ...


  • The David McCune International Art Gallery at Methodist University will host a photography exhibi...


  • Fall in love with The Little Mermaid all over again, featuring Ariel, Sebastian and more in this ...


CityView Facebook
CityView Family Facebook