November 14th, 2017
Tallahassee Team Wins USTA League Nationals Tennis, 3 Teams Place Third
Florida teams won a national league tennis championship and achieved three third-place finishes last weekend at USTA League National Championships held in Mobile, Ala., and Orlando, Fla.
The Tallahassee Mixed 40 & Over 7.0 team came out national champion at the USTA League Mixed 40 and Over 7.0 National Championships at the Mobile Tennis Center in Mobile, Ala., in the final defeating USTA Hawaii (Honolulu) 2-0.
The team earlier defeated a squad from the USTA Caribbean Section (Bayamon, P.R.) 2-1 in the semifinals. They advanced to the semis by winning their round-robin flight contested Friday and Saturday.
Playing out of Forestmeadows Park and Athletic Center, the team is captained by Denean Sykes with a season roster that includes Kevin Warner, Michelle Eubanks, Travis Sykes, Laura Phillips-Kirchhoff, Sarah Duke, Susan Smith, Teresa Ransom, Lori Elliott, Kenneth Seymore, Melissa Jaacks, Andrew Lawyer, Clark Kuntz, John Brooks, Sharon Dailey, and Jeffrey Banka.
It was the first-ever national win for Tallahassee in the Mixed 40 & Over division and the first USTA League Nationals title for a Tallahassee team in 20 years.
The Mixed 40 & Over 9.0 team from Pinellas County (St. Pete Tennis Center, St. Petersburg) finished in third place in Mobile after falling in the semifinals 2-1 to eventual champion USTA Northern California (Los Gatos). Led by captain Josh Melton, their season roster included Gueisy Herrmann, Chris Canfield, Jamie Mckibban, Avery Zercoe, Richard Sobieray, Joan Simmons, William Zeedyk, Mike Moenter, Sarah Howe, Gayle Brennan, and Dagmar Rocker.
Orlando and the USTA National Campus was the host for the 2017 USTA League Adult 18 & Over 4.5 National Championships, where Florida teams finished third on both the men’s and women’s sides.
The 18 & Over Men’s 4.5 team from Miami-Dade South (Doral Park, Doral) lost 4-1 in the semifinals to eventual champion USTA Midwest (Indianapolis). At their Florida sectional championships in August they gained a nationals berth by battling past Duval County (Jacksonville) 3-2. The Doral Park men were captained by Amando Cabane with a season roster comprised of Eli Panell, Sebastian Covos, Aldo Barba, Ramon Zatarain, Carlos Parra-Alvarez, Daniel Barrios, Eddy Leal, Matthew Hickey, Alejandro Lataczewski, Cosme Barrios, Fernando Salazar, Michael Tsoi, Sebastian Christensen, and Franco Palmiotto.
The 18 & Over Women’s 4.5 team from Seminole County (Sanlando Park, Altamonte Springs) also lost 4-1 in the semifinals to an eventual champion, again the USTA Midwest Section (Stow, Ohio). At the Florida sectionals in August they advanced to nationals by edging a team from Broward County (Weston Hills Country Club) 3-2. The Sanlando Park women were led by captain Tami Florin and their season roster was comprised of Denise Saiki, Lindsay Pearlman, Anne-Marie Miller, Christine Alfert, Denise Tormey, Valeria Bianchi, Pamela Saffran, Kim Frilot, Janet Lower, Jane Fountain, and Joan Simmons.
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 915,000 players across the nation today, making it the world’s largest recreational tennis league.
For more information on USTA Florida Leagues go to www.ustaflorida.com/leagues.