BARB HORAN: Holding Serve: October Busy Month for Local Tennis Scene
I've had some great response to my first article. It just goes to show you, tennis is alive and well in Moore County.
There is a lot of USTA (United States Tennis Association) competitive tennis in the area. The Pinehurst Tennis Club, Seven Lakes Country Club, Beacon Ridge Country Club, The National Club and The Country Club of North Carolina will all supply courts to be used for the North Carolina Super Senior State Tournament that is scheduled for Oct. 27-29.
Here is where all the winners of the leagues from all over North Carolina descend to play for the state championship.
Nine Southern states do the very same thing. Then they have all the winners come together (this year) in Columbus, Ga., in April and play for the Southern Se09/17/06ctional Championships. The sectional winners advance to play at the national level. That's a lot of tennis.
Super Senior teams are made up of players 60-and-older. Yep, you read that right, 60-and-older. Wait, we also have Super Dooper Teams, boasting players that are 70 and older -- definitely not doing Bingo here. In each age group you have different levels of play, a situation that creates a fair test for all participants.
Last year, five teams from our local league (The Pines) won the state tournament and went to the sectional championship in Pelham, Ala. The 3.0 70s ladies from the Seven Lakes Country Club had a grand time in winning the sectional championship. There was no national play for them, but we understand that there will be this year. The thing is they have to win again this year to get there.
Our local leagues are usually under the direction of Ruth Bondurant. She's been doing such a good job, I believe they'll let her do it forever.
Last year, there were hundreds of players competing here in the Pinehurst area. They stayed at the elegant hotels, ate in many of the fine restaurants and shopped at the area's many great shops. You might remember all those "older" people dressed in tennis outfits all over the place -- now you know why. Keep those dates in mind (Oct. 27-29) and come out to see some fun tennis. You never know who you'll run in to. It could be your neighbor, or your grandmother or grandfather!
Moving right along, things are really popping over at the Lawn and Tennis Club. On Oct. 9, Don Campbell is bringing a new pro on board. Ryan Peterson will be moving from Topeka, Kan., to assist Don, who will continue at the club as the director of tennis.
"The demands for lessons and service has grown at such a rapid pace, the addition of Ryan will help to satisfy the demands," said Campbell.
Leagues are in full swing at the Lawn and Tennis Club, with the ladies Thursday evening league having a great time at their last two competitions, with 24 women participating. Also congratulations are in order to Toni Davenport, who has held her top position on Court One since the league began. And also to Dan Infantini, who won 18 games on Court One. That just goes to show you that the "club ladder system" is thriving. Friday evening mixed doubles play started on Sept. 15. This is a weekly social event. Players bring refreshments to share and enjoy the tennis and social interaction.
The junior programs continue to grow. Maria Sumner is helping to teach the many children enrolled in the various clinics. For more information, call Sue Campbell at 692-7270.
Over at the Pinehurst Club, the After School Tennis Clinic is about to start lessons for players from the age of 5 to 15. The lessons will be held on Tuesday and Thursday. Groups will be divided into Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced Intermediate. What a great way for the kids to start. For more information, call the pro shop at the Pinehurst Club at 235-8556 and ask to speak to either Carol McKenzie or Matt Dowling.
A big bit of news on the Pinehurst Tennis Club. It is listed as one of the top 50 tennis facilities in the country. What an honor (and definitely deserved). Everytime I play on those courts, I will certainly remember that. And you thought all they did over there was play golf.
Out in Seven Lakes Tennis Club, things are really picking up. A great turnout of kids for the group clinics is really encouraging. There is nothing like the look on the young faces when they hit the ball for the first time, especially when you are 5 or 6 years old. These grassroots programs can most certainly lead to a lifelong experience of fun and exercise. Children are so lucky to have all of these programs available to them here in Moore County. Bruce Adams, the new head pro at the club, is doing a super job with them.
They also have some really great activities planned. In fact, a fun one is in the works at this very moment. Since there are three communities in Seven Lakes, the club is bringing back a "Challenge Tennis Tournament" with the North side and the South side taking on the West side. This is really going to be fun. It will be open to everyone in all three communities (of course, you must be a tennis player). There are a lot of competitive players in Seven Lakes, which should make for a great afternoon of tennis. The winning team gets to keep an old clock that has hung in the club house for years. Rumor has it if the North/South players lose, they won't give up the batteries to the clock. I'll let you know how things turn out.
Today you have learned a little more about "Local tennis 101," but there are so many interesting people involved in this sport, I hope to fill you in on them, especially the pros. If you have ever wondered what they've won and how they got into teach, you're going to find out.
And there is a local tennis organization I especially want to tell you about. Do you know what MTA stands for? Well, it's the Moore Tennis Association. Next time, I'll give you the scoop on them. There is so much exciting tennis coming in October, I hardly know where to start!
Until next time, see ya on the courts!
Submit any tennis-related items for this column to Barb Horan. Her e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org
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