BARB HORAN: Local Tennis Heads Into League Play
It's tennis time again. Local players are off and running and with all of this beautiful weather it just doesn't get any better.
The spring teams for the local league (The Pines) are all in place. Teams have been practicing all over the county, and it's time to get to the real deal.
This year the league has two divisions: The Adult division is for players up to the age of 50, while the Senior division has players aged 50 and up. The Adult division has 394 players distributed among 35 teams. The Senior division has 190 players distributed among 19 teams. That means that the Pines League this season has 584 players competing on 54 teams. Some teams are still registering players and the number will go up.
The league is really spread out this year, including tennis clubs in Fayetteville, Laurinburg, Sanford and Moore County. Teams usually have one match a week. With 54 teams that means there is a lot of tennis here and in the surrounding area. Ruth Bondurant, the league coordinator, certainly has her work cut out for her. Each division has its own scheduling, and Bondurant is in charge of that.
I will keep you up to date with the teams' effort this season. This year the winner of the Adult division will play for the state championships in Moore County in early July. The Senior division winner will play in Asheville in June. There are always surprises when it comes to the competition.
The local clubs are really getting busy. The Lawn and Tennis Club on Morganton Road has an after-school program under way in addition to the regular clinics the club offers. Ryan Peterson, the club's new pro, has been really busy with his new programs.
Seven Lakes has gone through a "transformation" with clinics for youth, adult clinics and an access card for the new member program. All the exciting happenings are taking place under the direction of pro Bruce Adams.
Since I have become involved with the Moore Tennis Association I really had my eyes opened. They are working extremely hard with the huge state tournament set for the area in July. The effort to organize the event takes much more work than I ever dreamed possible. The MTA is reaching out to the community for help. The tournament brings so much to Moore County, as I have mentioned before in this column. The tennis is exciting, but so is the economic impact the event has on local hotels, restaurants and community.
Please take time to find out more about MTA by contacting Susan Foster at firstname.lastname@example.org or me at email@example.com. The organization really needs help, including financially.
We also have two local teams that are prepping for the "Big One." The two teams are going to compete in the Southern Sectional Championships in Columbus, Ga., at the end of March.
A Men's 3.5 Super Senior Team out of The National Club will be the North Carolina representative in its division. The team is lead by captain Bill Doerr. And the Ladies 3.0 State Champions in the Super Seniors are from Seven Lakes. Captains Kay McCarthy, Barb Horan (that would be me) and the team claimed the Southern Sectional Champions last year. I have to admit it certainly would be nice to win it again.
Keep in mind, these players are all over 70 years old. A little aside: What did your Grandpa or Grandma do at 70. Did you ever picture them in sneakers and shorts running all over a tennis court?
So you can see, a lot is going on, and it's going to get even busier. Next time I'll fill you in on some results of League play. Until then, keep hitting that little yellow ball.
See ya on the courts.
Barb Horan lives in Seven Lakes. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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