Duval and Miami-Dade counties were the multi-title winners out of six championships decided at the USTA Florida Combo 50 & Over 6.5/7.5/8.5 League Sectional Championship, held Feb. 4-6, 2022, at the USTA National Campus in Orlando.
The winners were Duval County (Florida Yacht Club, Jacksonville) in the men’s 6.5, Miami-Dade County (Riviera Preparatory School, Miami) in the women’s 6.5, Duval County (Baymeadows Tennis Center, Jacksonville) in the men’s 7.5, Collier County (Greater Marco Family YMCA, Marco Island) in the women’s 7.5, Miami-Dade County (Kerdyk Biltmore Tennis Center, Coral Gables) in the men’s 8.5, and Sarasota County (River Strand Golf and Country Club, Bradenton) in the women’s 8.5.
It is Duval County’s first-ever title in both the men’s 6.5 and 7.5 divisions. In the 6.5 division, the squad from Duval knocked out reigning champions Marion County (Ft. King Tennis Center, Ocala), who was looking to secure its third successive title in the division. The women’s 6.5 division tells a similar story, with Miami-Dade claiming the crown over Escambia, who had dominated the division since 2019. Meanwhile in the women’s 8.5, Sarasota County continued its domination of the division, winning its third consecutive title.
The competing teams represented various clubs, parks, recreational departments and organizations, and finished at the top of their local leagues during the 2021 season to advance to the USTA Florida Combo 50 & Over League Sectional Championships.
For Combo 50 & Over 6.5-8.5 doubles-only division play, the combined NTRP (National Tennis Rating Program) ratings of each doubles team may not exceed the level in which they are competing, and the NTRP rating difference between members of an individual doubles pair may not exceed 0.5. For more information on NTRP levels, click here.
Combo 50 & Over Men’s 6.5
Final: Duval County (Florida Yacht Club, Jacksonville) finished ahead of Marion County (Fort King Tennis Center, Ocala) 4-0, 2-2 in round-robin play
Duval County Season Roster: James Racine (Captain), Bryan Clontz, JD Reeder, Frank Morreale, Ron Pellum, John Williams, Steve Vansandt, Emmet Ferguson, Christopher Johnson, Greg Merritt, James Robison
Combo 50 & Over Women’s 6.5
Final: Miami-Dade County (Riviera Preparatory School, Miami) finished ahead of Alachua County (Hawkstone Golf & Tennis Club, Gainesville) 1-0, 0-1 in round-robin play
Miami-Dade County Season Roster: Jane Forman (Captain), Karen Fishman, Tania Rodriguez, Maricarmen Diazmiron, Lirian Dondo, Tracie Williams, Maira Maguire, Yolanda Sosa, Marisabel de la Mora Villarroel, Maria Fernandez de Castro, Maritza Marchand, Laurie Stein, Maggie Sanchez, Luisa Angel, Kelly James, Caroline Humphrey
Combo 50 & Over Men’s 7.5
Final: Duval County (Baymeadows Tennis Center, Jacksonville) finished ahead of Hillsborough County (HCC Tennis Complex, Tampa) 1-0, 0-1 in round-robin play
Duval County Season Roster: Herve Devos (Captain), Joseph Travers, David Smyyh, Eric Leach, Marcus Hodges, Eugene Kasper, Frank Sabato, Gary Badger, Cort Raithel, Gary Herzfeld, Michael Halusek, Aaron Robles, Mark Cabler, Charles McGehee
Combo 50 & Over Women’s 7.5
Final: Collier County (Greater Marco Family YMCA, Marco Island) finished ahead of Pinellas County (McMullen Tennis Complex, Clearwater) 1-0, 0-1 in round-robin play
Collier County Season Roster: Bernadette DiPino (Captain), Lori Irvin Hawes, Michelle Kaytaz, Cheryl Fuccillo, Ann Heinauer, Mary Fischer, Connie Johnson, Gladyvette Benarroch, Amber Hill, Andrea Washak, Lynne Huggins, Brita Swanson, Kelly Heintzelman, Linda Keely, Stephanie Opel, Karen Huffman, Corey Stranger, Mia Delk
Combo 50 & Over Men’s 8.5
Final: Miami-Dade County (Kerdyk Biltmore Tennis Center, Coral Gables) finished ahead of Orange County (location) 3-1, 3-1 in round-robin play
Miami-Dade County Season Roster: Henry Lujan (Captain), Jonathan Drucker, Mark Levitats, Jon Kallick, Gerardo Perdigon, Pedro Zuloaga, Werner Vondrak, Tony Askowitz, Richard Mangas, Mauricio Gomm Santos, Rob Pridgen, Lazaro Crespo
Combo 50 & Over Women’s 8.5
Final: Sarasota County (River Strand Golf and Country Club, Bradenton) finished ahead of Escambia County (Shoreline Park, Gulf Breeze) 4-0, 2-2 in round-robin play
Sarasota County Season Roster: Teri Barnard (Captain), Penny Franklin, Karen Brenneman, Nancy Finman, Hattie Grimsley, Heather Roggendorf, Judi Wilson, Kara Beene, Joan Pennello, Lorraine Breidenstein, Kim Reiser, Janice Dent, Marsha Parrish, Motoyo Arii
2021 USTA FLORIDA LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP CUP STANDINGS
The USTA Florida League Championship Cup is awarded to the county with the most league sectionals titles during the 2021 season (standings through Feb. 7, recent winners in bold):
1. Duval County (9 titles) — 55&Over-M7.0/X7.0, 40&Over-X6.0/M4.0, 18&Over-W4.0/W5.0/X7.0, Combo 50&Over-M6.5/M7.5
2T. Orange/Seminole/Lake (8) — 55&Over-W7.0/W8.0/W9.0, 40&Over-W3.5/W4.5, 18&Over-M3.0/W3.5/X6.0
2T. Hillsborough County (8) — 55&Over-W6.0, 40&Over-X9.0/W4.0/W5.0, 18&Over-M4.0/W4.5/M5.0/X8.0
2T. Pinellas County (8) — 65&Over-W7.0/W8.0/M8.0, 55&Over-M9.0/X8.0, 40&Over-X7.0/X8.0, 18&Over-M4.5
3. Broward County (5) — 40&Over-M3.0/M3.5/M4.5, 18&Over-M3.5/X9.0
4. Marion County (4) — 65&Over-W6.0/M7.0, 40&Over-W2.5, 55&Over-X6.0
5. Miami-Dade County (3) — 40&Over-W3.0, Combo 50&Over-W6.5/M8.5
6T. Alachua County (1) — 18&Over-W2.5
6T. Brevard County (1) — 18&Over-X10.0
6T. Collier County (1) — Combo 50&Over-W7.5
6T. Escambia County (1) — 55&Over-M8.0
6T. Polk County (1) — 18&Over-W3.0
6T. Sarasota County (1) — Combo 50&Over-W8.5
Note: County determined by the location of team’s home club. Season-ending ties to be broken by teams’ 1st-4th place results at USTA League Nationals.
Established in 1980, USTA League has grown from 13,000 participants in a few parts of the country in its first year to more than 904,000 players across the nation today, making it the world’s largest recreational tennis league. The league groups players by using six National Tennis Rating Program (NTRP) levels, ranging from 2.5 (entry) to 5.0 (advanced). USTA League is open to any USTA member 18 years of age or older.
For more information on USTA Florida Leagues go to www.USTAFlorida.com/leagues.