Marion County (Golden Ocala Golf & Equestrian Club) won its first USTA Florida League Sectionals title of the season in the Women’s 6.5 Division on Sunday, defeating Alachua County (Gainesville Golf & Country Club) 2-1 in a rain make-up from the USTA Florida Combo 50 & Over League 6.5/8.5 Sectional Championships held in November.
The No. 1 and No. 3 doubles lines were decisive wins split between each team, so it came down to the No. 2 doubles which was decided in a super-tiebreak going Marion County’s way.
“Playing at sectionals is always fun, but to actually bring home the state title is a great feeling!” said Marion captain Christine Godek. “Even if we are over 50, coming in first never gets old!”
Alachua was attempting to win a second Combo 50 & Over sectionals title after capturing the Men’s 7.5 division a few weeks earlier, its first USTA Florida League Sectionals title of the season.
The competing teams finished at the top of their local leagues during the 2018 season to advance to the USTA Florida Combo 50 & Over League Sectional Championships.
For Combo 50 & Over 6.5 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 go to www.ustaflorida.com/adult-tennis/usta-leagues/#section-ntrp-ratings.
Women’s 6.5 Division
Final: Marion County (Golden Ocala Golf & Equestrian Club) d. Alachua County (Gainesville Golf & Country Club) 2-1
Championship Match Results:
No. 1 Doubles: Eileen Lombardo/Carmen Rosario (Marion) d. Jane Muir/Sylvia Spear 6-1, 6-1
No. 2 Doubles: Beth Little/Dina Sapienza (Marion) d. Beth Mills/Deborah Metler 2-6, 6-3, 1-0
No. 3 Doubles: Marisa McLeod/M. Cathy Kasweck (Alachua) d. Christine Godek/Carmel Connor 6-2, 6-0
Marion Season Roster: Christine Godek (captain), Lynn Leonard, Susan Hebert, Karin Dean, Carmen Rosario, Beth Little, Eileen Lombardo, Dina Sapienza, Fay Owings, Lynn Crowe, Carmel Connor, Cynthia Nassal, Leigh Steinberg, Leslie Hagan
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.