Tennis In Your Area – Southern California Tennis News Tennis News, Events, Community Activities, Tournaments Fri, 17 Aug 2018 20:54:15 +0000 en-US hourly 1 SoCal Embraces Hot Pink at League Sectionals Fri, 17 Aug 2018 20:54:15 +0000 Read more »]]>

For 2018, Southern California league teams should learn to love PINK. Specifically, hot pink.

A color war has broken out across the nation, with 17 colors assigned to the 17 USTA Sections. Teams that advance to Nationals are asked to incorporate the colors into their outfits or tennis gear. To promote this color camaraderie, players will also have matching wristbands to trade with opponents throughout the tournament.

Hot pink is the color for Southern California teams. As a tribute to the color wars, hot pink was on full display at the Adult 18 & Over Sectional Championship at Los Caballeros Sports Village this month. Players checked in at a tournament desk decorated in hot pink pom-poms and had plenty of opportunities to pose with pink party props throughout the event.

Teams that won at Sectionals will advance to various facilities across the U.S. to compete for a national title. The winning teams received information packets on their National Championship, which also included their pink wristbands and reminder about their role in the color wars. You can track the color wars online with the hashtag #USTALeague.

Congratulations to all of Southern California’s winning teams! Here is a list of the winners:

  • 3.0 Women – Beach Cities – Manhattan Country Club
  • 3.5 Women – San Fernando Valley – Party at the Net
  • 3.5 Men – San Gabriel Valley – Underdogs
  • 4.0 Women – San Gabriel Valley – Chow Fun-Aye
  • 4.0 Men – Orange County Weekend – Lower Peters Canyon
  • 4.5 Women – San Fernando Valley – Braemar
  • 4.5 Men – Orange County – Body Shots
  • 5.0 Women – Orange County – Los Cab
  • 5.0 Men – Orange County – Dream Killers
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Top-Seeded Pielet Advances at Girls’ Nats Mon, 06 Aug 2018 18:04:29 +0000 Read more »]]> Girls’ 16s top-seed Gianna Pielet overcame second-set nerves and went on to post a 6-1, 7-5 victory over Simran Chhabra of Irving, Texas to advance to the third-round of the USTA Billie Jean King Girls’ 16s & 18s National Championship at the Barnes Tennis Center.

After dropping the first game of the opening set, the 16-year old Pielet of El Paso, Texas, won six straight games to put away the first set in 46 minutes. However, Chhabra raised the level of her game in the second set and matched Pielet game-by-game.

Gianna Pielet

With no service breaks through the first 11 games, Chhabra was on serve at 5-6 as she served to stay in the match. She fell behind 40-15 and that was all Pielet needed as the top-seed cracked a down the line forehand winner on her first match point to close out the second-round match in one-hour and 48 minutes.

“I feel really confident. I’m definitely playing really solid tennis right now. I have to give her (Chhabra) credit because she definitely picked it up in the second set. I felt like I got a little nervous, a little tighter, but I figured it out,” Pielet said.

“I’m not here to put pressure on myself and say I have to win because that’s what it’s not about. I’m just practicing on what I need to do, which is getting better,” Pielet added. “It would definitely mean a lot to get my eighth gold ball, but then again, if I don’t win, I won’t be upset because it’s a journey and a process you have to be prepared for. I’m just happy to be here.”

Top seeds in the Girls’ 18s division will play their second-round match on Monday after receiving first-round byes. No. 1 seed Kayla Day of Santa Barbara, Calif., will face Neha Velaga of Colmar, Pa., at 11 a.m., while second-seeded Whitney Osuigwe of Bradenton, Fla., will meet Blessing Nwaozuzu of Beachwood, Ohio at 12:30 p.m.

Third-seeded Cori Gauff of Delray Beach, Fla., is scheduled to play her second-round match against Nicole Conard of Boca Raton, Fla., at 12:30 p.m. Gauff is currently the No. 1 ranked player in the International Tennis Federation junior rankings.

In Sunday’s 18s first-round action, two local players advanced to the second round. Unseeded Elizabeth Goldsmith of Chula Vista, Calif., eliminated Monique Woog of Lakeland, Tenn., 6-4, 6-0 and 33rd seeded Nicole Mossmer of La Jolla, Calif., cruised past McKenna Koenig of Scottsdale, Ariz., 6-1, 6-1.

For updated tournament draws in each division, please go to:

This past April, the USTA renamed the USTA Girls’ 16s & 18s National Championships to honor tennis icon Billie Jean King, a member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame. King is scheduled to attend the final two days of the tournament.

All tournament matches played on Stadium Court at the Barnes Tennis Center will be streamed live on the tournament website through Friday, August 10. The link is available at

The Tennis Channel schedule for the final two days of the tournament will be as follows:

Saturday, August 11
Girl’s 18s Singles Semifinals – 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. PDT (2 to 6 p.m. EDT)
Girl’s 16s Singles Final – 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. PDT (7:30 to 9:30 p.m. EDT)

Sunday, August 12
Girl’s 18s Singles Final – 1 to 3 p.m. PDT (4 to 6 p.m. EDT)

Over 400 of the top junior tennis players in the country, aged 16 and 18 and under, are competing for the title of National Champion, as well as a wild card entry into the Women’s Singles main draw of the 2018 US Open (for the 18s Champion) and a wild card into the 2018 US Open Junior Championships (for the 16s Champion).  The 18s Doubles Champions will also receive a wild card into the US Open Women’s Doubles main draw.

The updated starting times for each day of the tournament will be as follows:
Monday, August 6 — 8 a.m.
Tuesday, August 7 through Sunday, August 12 — 9 a.m.
(Starting times subject to change)

Early-round tournament matches will also be played at San Diego State University’s Aztec Tennis Center, 5375 Remington Rd., San Diego, CA, 92115 through Tuesday, Aug. 7, and the Balboa Tennis Club, 2221 Morley Field Drive, San Diego, CA 92104 through Wednesday, Aug. 8.

Admission and on-site parking at the Barnes Tennis Center is free each day of the tournament. For fans watching matches at SDSU and the Balboa Tennis Club, admission is free. There is a nominal charge for on-campus parking at SDSU. Parking regulations at the university will be strictly enforced. Parking is free at the Balboa Tennis Club.

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Oracle ITA Summer Circuit Brings Out the Best in So Cal College Tennis Players Sat, 21 Jul 2018 02:12:09 +0000 Read more »]]> Competitive battles abound in Southern California at the various Oracle ITA Summer Circuit events, a series Powered by UTR. The ITA collegiate tournaments have gathered some of So Cal’s top male and female players who attend universities from across the United States. Despite tough matches and extreme So Cal heat, one common theme seems to be outstanding tennis, supreme sportsmanship and camaraderie with deeply rooted friendships from junior tennis days.

The 2018 six-week summer circuit started on June 23 and will end July 30. So Cal sites are Chapman University, Pomona Pitzer, Cal State Northridge, Claremont Mudd Scripps, Azusa Pacific University and Cal State Los Angeles. Draws are based on Universal Tennis Ratings and they offer 32-player draws. Scoring is 2 out of 3 sets with a 10-point match tiebreak in lieu of a third set with no-ad scoring. Doubles are 8-game pro sets.  Participants across the country can compete in the ITA Summer Circuit Points Race, which will conclude with the top five men and women receiving automatic entries into the ITA National Summer Championships at Texas Christian University.

Emily Dush from Chula Vista is a recent high school graduate of Laurel Springs School and will play tennis for  the University of Utah in the fall. Dush has competed in several ITA Summer events in singles and doubles.

“I’m playing to get used to the college tennis format,” said Dush, a 10.22 UTR. “The competition is tough and the conditions are challenging. It’s giving me a look at what’s ahead.”

Jed Kronenverg, a sophomore at Pomona Pitzer, believes the circuit will help him improve his doubles play while Matt Sullivan from the Weil Academy sees the ITA events as a way to step into the college tennis arena. Ethan Prost, a sophomore at Loyola Marymount University, is striving to gain experience so he can make the top six at his school next year. Jennifer Kerr of San Diego, a two-time CIF San Diego Section Singles Champion, attends Columbia University and believes the summer tournaments will help her stay mentally tough.

There are a myriad of reasons that college tennis players participate in the Oracle ITA Summer Circuit including improve their UTR, refine their skills and strive to qualify for the national tennis tournament. However, one visible theme seems to be meeting up with old friends. This was evident in the smiles, hugs, laughter, high fives and gregarious group dynamics at each site despite the intense So Cal heat wave that brought sizzling 115 degrees through parts of July.

“I loved seeing my junior tennis friends because in a sense we grew up together,” said Gillian Parker, a standout at UC Irvine.  Parker partnered with Julia Ronney from the University of Montana in the Chapman College event. The duo were finalists in women’s doubles at that tennis tournament, and have been doubles partners since the 12-and-Under Division in USTA junior tennis. “It’s like old times playing with Julia because we know each other so well. This was so much fun.”

Parker’s parents, Sheryl and Eric, enjoyed watching their daughter compete at both Chapman University and Claremont College. Eric is a PTR Teaching Professional at the Lawrence Welk Resort in Escondido and a leader in the San Diego tennis community. “This is great because the pressure of junior tennis is off. They are no longer in the junior tennis rankings race or in the hunt for a college scholarship. The girls are here to simply improve their games and that’s a great attitude,” said Eric Parker.

While all of the So Cal college sites are well known, Chapman University Coach Will Marino was proud to introduce his new five-court facility to the ITF community. The Erin J. Lastinger ’88 Tennis Center was completed in September and is perhaps one of the top in the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC).

It appears the Oracle ITA Summer Circuit has something to offer everyone in So Cal and throughout the United States. Many tennis players said they enjoyed great competition and outstanding sportsmanship, and all considered it an extension of their college tennis experience.

“As a tennis player, you should be a good sport.” said Dush. “Do the right thing because it’s the right thing to do, not because you want to win. It’s about playing fair.”

For more information on the Oracle ITA Summer Circuit Powered by UTR, please go to



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WTT San Diego Aviators’ Kids Zone Brings Joy to Families Fri, 20 Jul 2018 20:43:55 +0000 Read more »]]> Great professional tennis happened recently with the World Team Tennis San Diego Aviators on the bright multicolored center court featured at the Omni La Costa Resort and Spa. However, great recreational Net Generation youth tennis also happened at the Aviators’ Kids Zone, a yearly hotspot for young players on the modified “Red” court just steps away from the main event. The Kids Zone is a program sponsored by the USTA Southern California, and it is available before and during Aviators matches.

“It was great fun to host the Kids Zone,” said Melanie Bischoff, the SCTA Director of Community Tennis. “The kids are inspired by the pros and also enjoy playing with their friends.”

The World Team Tennis regular season runs from July 15 to August 2, and Aviators fans will enjoy outstanding play by San Diego hometown stars Taylor Fritz and Coco Vandeweghe along with Naomi Broady (Great Britain), Anna-Lena Groenefeld (Germany), Marcin Matkowski (Poland) and Marcus Willis (Great Britain). The Aviators are led by Coach John Lloyd, who guided the team to its 2016 league championship. The Aviators’ General Manager is Jim Ault, who is an integral part of San Diego tennis leadership, and has been associated with San Diego Tennis & Racquet Club, Barnes Tennis Center and the Bay Club in Carmel Valley.

The fast-paced World Team Tennis format was the brainchild of founder Billie Jean King, whose vision, determination and persistence has made the league an enduring reality. The San Diego franchise was created in 2014 and previously featured the Southern California legendary doubles team of Mike and Bob Bryan. The current addition of the Aviators’ mascot, ACE, has brought additional joy to the event.

The excitement of pro tennis bubbled over to the Aviators-USTA Kids Zone, which hosted a modified “Red” court on an adjacent grass area with an 18-foot net using red felt balls and 23-inch rackets. Dozens of youth ages 2 to 14 rallied, played impromptu recreational games and enjoyed tennis activities before and during Aviators matches.

“USTA So Cal is honored to be a part of the 2018 World Team Tennis Season and it’s a great partnership for both of us, working together to grow the sport,” said Cari Buck, the SCTA Director of Marketing.  “Kids can come and hit balls, play games and pose for pictures with our giant tennis racket. Moms and Dads can continue to watch the tennis knowing their kids are safe, a win-win for everyone.”

“I love tennis,” said Eddie Hastings, a finalist in the Boys 12 division of the Little Mo So Cal Sectionals. “My mom is in the stands watching the matches, and I wanted to play here.” Hastings then proceeded to play games with friends that are all active in USTA junior tennis.

Click for more information on the San Diego Aviators and Newport Beach’s Orange County Breakers.


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New USTA Members to receive discount with iTennis this fall Fri, 20 Jul 2018 20:36:04 +0000 Read more »]]>

Group tennis clinics are a great way to improve your game, extend your social circle, and get friends and family into the game!

To encourage group participation, USTA Southern California and iTennis are teaming up this fall to offer a 15% group clinic discount to USTA members who open a new membership between August 1 and October 31. This opportunity is available to residents throughout SoCal and is valid at iTennis locations in West Hollywood, South El Monte (Performance Center), Riverside, La Habra, Whittier/Palm Park, Arroyo Seco, Pasadena (Rose Bowl), Downtown Los Angeles, and Arcadia.

The iTennis Fall session begins September 4 and runs through November 12, 2018.

USTA Members who provide their brand new Membership ID/Number during the paid registration process will enjoy the 15% discount when registering for full session group clinic(s) during the Fall 2018 session of iTennis. Please note that this promotion does not include USTA membership renewals, and is not eligible for one time clinics or private lessons. Other restrictions may apply.

New USTA members must provide their Membership ID/Number in person to iTennis front desk staff during the paid registration process for the 15% discount to be applied. Pro-rated registrations after session has started on 9/4 will be eligible for discount as well. Offer is not transferable, has no cash value, and is valid for new USTA Adult, Junior or Family member(s) only.

To learn more about iTennis, visit

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First Break Academy Hosts Return The Serve Fun Day Presented By Chase Thu, 19 Jul 2018 15:02:15 +0000 Read more »]]> For the second consecutive year, the “Return The Serve Fun Day Presented By Chase” event was hosted by First Break Academy and took place last Friday at StubHub Center in Carson.

First Break Academy, in partnership with Chase Bank and the USTA Foundation, served as the local L.A. host of the event, which celebrated Chase’s continued commitment to the USTA Foundation and to the National Junior Tennis & Learning Network. The USTA announced recently that the USTA Foundation, in partnership with Chase, is contributing $150,000 total to 10 NJTL chapters nationwide.

First Break Academy based in Carson was one of the 10 NJTL programs awarded a $15,000 grant from the USTA Foundation, the national charitable organization of the USTA.

“Every First Break play event is special and this is by far our Super Bowl of Play Days thanks to Chase and the USTA Foundation,” said Peggy Bott, First Break Academy co-founder and executive director. “We love to throw a big party and the StubHub Center is built for it.”

Bott said more than sixty junior tennis players and over one hundred area school children took part in the day, which included on-court games, a tug of war, dunk tank, hit for prizes and a free pizza lunch and ice cream snack.

“It’s incredible to witness the generous support and participation of all the pros that came out to hit with the kids,” Bott said. “It was a fantastic day and all the kids just had a blast. It’s definitely a team effort. SCTA, EXOs, MCC members, parents, junior mentors, and the many friends of First Break deserve credit for today’s success.

Here is a sampling of what those attending had to say:

Nicole Gibbs, WTA player:

“This is awesome. It’s just so great to be out here and see all these kids playing tennis. There’s just a lot of good energy. First Break has done amazing things, and you can see the improvement every time I come out here. There are eight kids here who I saw two months ago who don’t look near like the same player they were there. You can tell the kids are passionate about working hard and getting better.”

Jared Donaldson, ATP player:

“I think it’s a great event and inspires a lot of kids to hopefully pick up a racquet and learn the game of tennis and really enjoy the game. You learn so many life skills by playing tennis and I don’t think tennis gets enough credit for that.”

Jason Collins, former NBA player:

“I grew up playing every sport, and my two favorites are basketball and tennis so any chance I get to work with these kids to get them familiar with those sports, I’m all for it.”

Steve Johnson, ATP player:

“We are lucky enough to be professional athletes and to be able to give back and see the smiling faces of the kids and trying to get them interested in tennis any way we can is so worth it. I remember being a kid and having the pros at the time doing the same thing, so it feels good to give back.”

Taylor Fritz, ATP player:

“I live nearby and train here so it’s just makes sense to come out and help because it’s for a good cause. These kids learn so much from hard work to discipline to even making friends. All the closest friends that I have back home are all through sports back home when I was younger.”

Daniel Nguyen, ATP player:

“Being able to rally with them and see how good they are; this is just a super fun day. I think sports teaches the kids discipline and character and finding that balance between sports and school. This is my first time doing this and I’ll come back and do it anytime I’m back in California.”

Kate Schoff, JPMorgan Chase Executive Director of Sports and Entertainment Marketing

“We love this event and it’s our fifth year putting on Return the Serve. First Break Academy puts on such a great event. It’s just meant to give the kids in the community a fun day of tennis and play. This is something we are really invested in and will continue to put dollars to.”

First Break Academy was co-founded by Bott, Rick Buchta and Marc Lucero. First Break was named the USTA Southern California Section’s Community Organization Service Award winner in 2017.

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First Break Academy To Host Return The Serve Event Friday Thu, 12 Jul 2018 04:47:49 +0000 Read more »]]> The “Return The Serve Fun Day Presented By Chase” event returns to Southern California for the fifth straight year on Friday, July 13, at StubHub Center in Carson.

First Break Academy, in partnership with Chase Bank and the USTA Foundation, will serve as the local L.A. host of the event, which is a celebration of Chase’s continued commitment to the USTA Foundation and to the National Junior Tennis & Learning Network. The USTA announced recently that the USTA Foundation, in partnership with Chase Bank, is contributing $150,000 total to 10 NJTL chapters nationwide.

First Break Academy based in Carson was one of the 10 NJTL programs awarded a $15,000 grant from the USTA Foundation, the national charitable organization of the USTA.

Friday’s event, one of 10 that will take place in cities across the nation, will feature high-energy and fun tennis activities, off-court educational opportunities, and a healthy lunch for the youth participants of the NJTL programs, along with their families. In addition, the event will include a check presentation to the NJTL chapter leaders by a local Chase representative.

ATP World Tour stars Steve Johnson and Jared Donaldson and WTA star Nicole Gibbs will be on-hand helping with the clinics and taking part in games and other activities. Johnson’s teammate at USC Daniel Nguyen is also committed to participate. Johnson and Nguyen teamed to win four consecutive NCAA team titles for the Trojans from 2009-2012.

“Chase continues to serve as an outstanding supporter of our charitable mission,” said Dan Faber, Executive Director, USTA Foundation. “The increase in grant funding speaks volumes about Chase’s commitment to the communities we serve. This incredible five-year partnership has truly enhanced our ability to help under-resourced youth with impactful tennis and education programs.”

“As a sponsor of the US Open for 37 years, we’re proud to support the USTA Foundation and its NJTL programs’ mission to help today’s youth build confidence, camaraderie, and ultimately pursue their dreams,” said Kate Schoff, Executive Director for Sports and Entertainment at JPMorgan Chase.

First Break Academy co-founders Rick Buchta, Peggy Bott and Marc Lucero will lead the day’s events. First Break Academy was named the USTA Southern California Section’s Community Organization Service Award winner in 2017.

Friday’s schedule includes:
9 a.m.: Zumba full-body dynamic warm-up.
10 a.m.: Opening Ceremonies and brief welcome.
Note: National Anthem will be sung by Caris Shelton with DAS Models.
10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.: Tennis games, music, dance, and fitness led by EXOS.
12 p.m. to 1 p.m.: Dunk Tank, games and hit for prizes. Note: lunch will be provided.
Note: Check presentation will take place at 12:15 p.m. PT.

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SoCal Officials Selected To The 2018 U.S. Open Mon, 02 Jul 2018 18:52:56 +0000 Read more »]]> The USTA National Officiating Department has published the list of Southern California officials selected for the 2018 U.S. Open.

This is the singular highest honor for an American tennis official in the Professional Pathway. For many on this list, it is the result of years of hard work and dedication.  We are all very proud of the significant accomplishment of the following Southern California Officials Selected to the 2018 U.S. Open.  Congratulations to:

John Bramlett

Selwyn Brereton

Bob Christianson

Teri Cohn

Marcos Cook

Sean Cook

James Flood

Holly Haggerty

Steven Hartshorn

Lei Ji

Steve Kasner

David Martinez

Michael Recasner

Maureen Regan

Linda Sharpe

Jill Spencer

Wayne Spencer

Bob Tomanek

Albert Ton

Bob Wiebe

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Anderson Keeps On Playing In Mother’s Memory Wed, 27 Jun 2018 21:42:34 +0000 Read more »]]> The following story appeared in the Santa Clarita Valley Signal on a brave high school tennis player Jake Anderson, who lost his mother and biggest fan Nicole Anderson back in April at the age of 47 to cancer.

The story was written by Signal Sports Editor Haley Sawyer.

At any given West Ranch boys’ tennis match, a relentless Nicole Anderson could be found on the sidelines. She’d cheer on her son, Jake, but she also wouldn’t hesitate to call out Wildcats coach and personal friend Eric Spiecker whenever she disagreed with him.

No matter where in Southern California the match or tournament was Nicole was there.

But at a match against Valencia during Anderson’s senior year, she was missing. She had died two days earlier of bile duct cancer, a rare but aggressive form of cancer that affects less than 20,000 Americans each year.

Anderson’s dad, Mike, wasn’t there either. While Anderson took backhand shots and made serves, Mike was making funeral arrangements.

“I knew that she would want me to go play and win because she couldn’t be there, but I know she’d be yelling and screaming,” Anderson said.

With his mom in mind, Anderson and his doubles partner, Aristo Turalakey, won all three sets against Valencia as the Wildcats won the Foothill League title outright.

“I needed to do that,” Anderson said. “Just to win for her.”

Anderson’s family noticed that something with Nicole just didn’t seem right around Thanksgiving of 2017. Typically a gregarious socialite and fierce tennis player, she was drained of energy and had chronic aches and pains.

She began going to doctors, taking test after test with no avail. January was when she received the cancer diagnosis and shortly after, she was hospitalized.

“When somebody that young gets a diagnosis like that, you’re always surprised and shocked and she had been playing tennis at the (Paseo Club),” said West Ranch tennis coach Eric Spiecker. “She’s kind of an icon women’s doubles player here and when you know she’s been playing tennis a few months earlier to hear the severity, you’re shocked.”

Spiecker and his wife Adeline constantly prayed for Nicole and did their best to help out the Anderson family that they knew so well. As Nicole battled, the Santa Clarita tennis community rallied.

Erin Pang of Saugus came up with the idea for his team to wear green ribbons, the color that represents bile duct cancer, during a match against Valencia. The teams painted a massive banner that said “Saugus & Valencia rise together” as well as “#teamnicole.”

The banner hung inside the Anderson household as a constant reminder of the positive impact that Nicole had on everyone’s lives.

Throughout his mother’s sickness, Anderson remained steadfast when it came to tennis. He was at every match and only missed one practice in the entire season.

He also focused on his college decision-making process, which led him to choose University of South Carolina. He’ll be walking on to the tennis team there.

“I tried to keep everything normal,” Anderson said. “I know like, my mom wouldn’t want me to skip playing and practicing and helping the team win. It was kind of the same with me and my college decision.

“I think because I was thinking about staying (in California for school), but it wouldn’t have mattered anyways because it happened so quickly, but she told me herself that she like, wanted me to do what I wanted to do.”

The morning of April 15, Anderson came out of his bedroom and saw his family in tears. Nicole had died around 1 a.m. at 47 years old after several weeks of hospice.

And still, Anderson remained focused on tennis. Two days after his mom’s death, he was back on the court for the league title match against Valencia.

“That’s not a coping thing,” Spiecker said. “I think he was just literally showing his devotion to his mom. I supported him by letting him have a sanctuary at practice … I just know that he had courage and I think the way he expressed his love and devotion for his mom was to be there for her.”

Anderson will head to South Carolina for school in August and his family will be making the move with him as they relocate to Beaufort.

At the West Ranch tennis courts, a new banner will hang next to the league championship banner that in memoriam of Nicole’s commitment to tennis. So while her shouts of encouragement (and sometimes criticism) will no longer echo across the courts, her presence, and consequently the presence of Anderson’s unwavering commitment, will inspire Wildcats for years to come.

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USTA Net Generation Community Tennis Workshop Inspires San Diego Coaches Fri, 22 Jun 2018 21:31:55 +0000 Read more »]]>

Fun and fantastic tennis happened in San Diego with its first ever USTA Net Generation Community Tennis Workshop in that area. The event was hosted by USTA Southern California and it was enjoyed by about 20 coaches at Rancho Penasquitos Tennis Center, a beautiful 12 court facility nestled in the green hills of North San Diego County.

The USTA’s Net Generation brand of youth tennis included a community progression of skills, fitness and game-based learning that blended fun with sport development. The workshop was designed to assist coaches from clubs, organizations and National Junior Tennis & Learning chapters in San Diego.

“This was great for veteran pros as well as beginning NJTL coaches,” said PTR Coach Jenny Hinrichs, the Head NJTL Pro at Murphy Canyon Recreation Center in San Diego. “The games and activities are easy to do and this workshop gave us a step by step plan.”

In addition, many veteran USPTA and PTR Certified teaching professionals attended the training to learn more about Net Generation tennis.“I’ve been to many of these trainings but there is always something new to pick up,” said USPTA and PTR certified Coach Lois Sczepaniak, the Head NJTL Coach for the East County Community Tennis Association.

Cheryll Olivas-Dieli, the director of the NJTL Barona Indian Reservation tennis, found value in racket and ball games as well as the athletic development component.

“It’s really important to help young players be more athletic,” said Olivas-Dieli. “I love the Net Generation program because it achieves that goal while having a lot of fun.”

The training was led by SCTA Tennis Service Representative Karen Ronney, a USPTA and PTR certified pro and former USTA 10-and-Under Faculty member. Rancho Penasquitos Tennis Center and its staff hosted the event and donated court time for the USTA Net Generation Community Tennis Training. For more information on Net Generation tennis,  go to



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LA’s 18-39 League is Back! Mon, 18 Jun 2018 15:29:45 +0000 Read more »]]> The Los Angeles league area is offering its second annual 18-39 league. This program will maintain the normal league structure that players love, but will ensure a social experience with an age cap at 39. During the season, players will compete in their regularly scheduled matches, but will also have the opportunity to play in a number of social events. These events include: professional WTT matches, cardio tennis classes, post-match hangouts, and more!

In LA’s 18-39 league, teams will have co-ed rosters and matches will consist of three types of doubles: men’s, women’s and mixed.  Team rating levels are set at the 7.0, 8.0, and 9.0 levels, so friends can be on the same team even if they are at different rating levels. This league is open to players who are not members of USTA.  Non-USTA members will pay a different registration fee, but will need to set-up a free USTA account.

Play is set to start in July and registration is now open! To register for the league, players will sign up on TennisLink and use the Introductory Team number (#6517357060). Our League Coordinators will reach out to you shortly to help you find a team. If you and a friend(s) want to play together, we can make that happen!

Interested in captaining? Don’t have a team? Need more information? Contact your League Coordinators Michelle and Debbie at

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LET’S PLAY! Here are your SoCal June Tournaments Thu, 07 Jun 2018 20:46:57 +0000 Read more »]]>

JUNE 1 iTennis Pride Tournament ($$$)
West Hollywood. Open singles and same gender/age division doubles (TennisLink #650016118)

JUNE 1 USTA Father/Daughter & Mother Son National Hard Court Championships
San Diego. Advanced Level Father-Daughter Doubles & Mother-Son Doubles (TennisLink #650038518)

JUNE 1 Calabasas Open & NTRP Championships
NTRP Singles & Doubles. (TennisLink #651744418)

JUNE 2 44th Annual Fallbrook Open
Fallbrook. All divisions offered. Net Proceeds to benefit the Fallbrook Boys & Girls Club (TennisLink #650005718)

JUNE 2 iTennis Arcadia NTRP Tournament
Arcadia. Open NTRP Singles. (TennisLink #650045618)

JUNE 2 21st Annual Southern California Wheelchair Sectional Championships
Lakewood. Wheelchair Sectional Championship (TennisLink #651721618)

JUNE 8 USTA National Senior, Super Sr., Ultra Sr. Father/ Son & Mother/ Daughter
Claremont. National Championship for Senior family divisions. (TennisLink #651768218)

JUNE 9 iTennis Growsky Memorial Open/NTRP Tournament
Riverside. NTRP Open Singles & Doubles. You may enter a maximum of 2 events (TennisLink #650021418)

JUNE 9 92nd Annual Los Angeles Public Parks Tournament
Griffith Park. (TennisLink #651721018)

JUNE 9 32nd Annual Southern California NTRP Sectional Championships
Lakewood. NTRP Singles & Doubles Sectional Championship (TennisLink #651722618)

JUNE 11 USTA National Men’s 65 & 70 Hard Court Championships
Irvine. National Championship for Men’s 65s & 70s Singles & Doubles. (TennisLink #650002518)

JUNE 15 102nd Annual La Jolla Tennis Championships
La Jolla. All divisions offered. Prize money offered in the open divisions. (TennisLink #650009318)

JUNE 15 iTennis Performance Center Summer Adult Pen/Senior/Family Tournament ($$$)
Woodland Hills. Open age division and family divisions offered. Prize money offered. (TennisLink #650035118)

JUNE 15 Warner Tennis Center Summer Open ($$$)
Woodland Hills. Open & NTRP Singles & Doubles. Prize money in the open divisions. (TennisLink #650035118)

JUNE 16 Wilson IE Fast4 Grand Prix
Riverside. NTRP Singles & Doubles. ONE DAY Round Robin. Participants receive a free gift from Wilson! (TennisLink #650006818)

JUNE 22 5th Annual La Mirada Foundation Charity Tennis Tournament (Non-Ranking)
La Mirada. NTRP divisions offered for adults and Junior divisions offered. Non-elimination. Proceeds benefit the Biola University Wheelchair Tennis Program,
La Mirada High tennis teams and the La Mirada Youth tennis program. (TennisLink #650053718)

JUNE 23 Murrieta Tennis Club Open and NTRP Tournament
Murrieta. Open & NTRP divisions offered. T-shirts for all participants. (TennisLink #651750918)

JUNE 29 Mid Summer Night’s Dream
Templeton. Non-Ranking, 3.5 & 4.5 doubles only. (TennisLink #650049218)

JUNE 30 19th Annual Jackie Tatum Tennis Classic
Los Angeles. Open, Senior & NTRP Singles, Doubles & Mixed Doubles. (TennisLink #650052618)


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Craig, Johnson Win USTA National Open Hard Court Titles Mon, 04 Jun 2018 17:51:30 +0000 Read more »]]> A pair of talented Southern Californians finished the USTA National Open Hard Court Championships in winning form as top-seeded Henry Craig of San Diego and third-seeded Taylor Johnson captured singles titles in their respective divisions under bright sunny skies on Sunday afternoon at the Balboa Tennis Club.

The 23-year-old Craig, who lives in the nearby San Diego community of Bankers Hill, played perhaps his best match of the tournament as he cruised past fifth-seeded Nicholas Reyes of West Hollywood, Calif., 6-1, 6-1 in 65 minutes.

Craig, a touring tennis professional ranked No. 632 in the ATP World Tour singles rankings, broke Reyes to open the match and built a 5-1 lead before closing out the first set in 38 minutes.

In the second set, Craig continued his brilliant play as he used two service breaks to take a 5-0 lead before Reyes held serve in the sixth game. Playing with a high level of confidence, Craig served out the match in the next game to win the title and his first USTA gold ball.

“I came out really strong out of the gate. I had a strong start and got on top of him early. I kept that momentum rolling and didn’t let him get into the match,” said Craig, who competes mainly on the USTA Pro Circuit. “It was a great week. I had a lot of tough matches and got a lot of great practice. I got my first gold ball, which is like a cherry on top for the week.”

In the women’s singles final, 17-year-old Taylor Johnson of Redondo Beach, Calif., took home the championship and a USTA gold ball after scoring a 6-4, 6-2 victory over fifth-seeded Julia Haynes of San Diego (Rancho Bernardo).

The third-seeded Johnson overcame a 4-1 deficit in the opening set and won five straight games to win the first set in 50 minutes. After breaking Haynes twice in the second set, she established a 5-2 lead. In the eighth game, Johnson fought off two break points and eventually went on to serve out the match.

“It feels amazing. I’m so happy just to be able to play this tournament. To come out with a win was pretty awesome,” said Johnson, who was playing her first tournament since suffering a left shoulder injury last summer. “It was tough for me, especially being my first tournament back. I focused on staying positive and just focusing on having fun. I’m lucky to be back on the court.”

In the Men’s Doubles Championship, top-seeds Damian Rodriguez of Princeton, N.J., and Ryan Seggerman of Coronado, defeated fifth-seeded Ivan Smith and Xavier Smith of Chula Vista, 6-4, 6-2.  Cali Jankowski of Carlsbad, Calif., teamed with Danielle Willson of Newport Beach, Calif., for a 6-4, 6-3 victory over fourth-seeded Julia Deming of Fallbrook, Calif, and Haynes in the Women’s Doubles final.

Second-seeded Emmanuel Mensah of Chula Vista, Calif., and Hiromi Sasano of La Mesa, Calif., wrapped up the Mixed Doubles crown as they got past top-seeds Sabastiani Leon of San Diego and Curt Wheeler of Salem, Ore., 6-3, 6-2.

The USTA National Open Hard Court Championships was voted “Tournament of the Year” in 2011 by the San Diego District Tennis Association. The event has had several distinguished past champions and participants. U.S. Davis Cup star Jack Sock, who reached a career-high No. 8 in the ATP World Tour singles rankings last year, won the Men’s Singles Championship in 2010.

Coco Vandeweghe, a semifinalist at last year’s Australian Open and US Open, earned a USTA bronze ball at the 2007 Hard Court Championships. Former WTA touring professionals Gretchen Rush and Ros Nideffer won the Women’s Open Doubles title seven times, while Allison Bradshaw captured the Women’s Open Singles title in 2007.

The 2018 USTA National Open Hard Court Championships are sponsored by United States Tennis Association, San Diego District Tennis Association, CH Court Tech, San Diego Aviators, Kashi, Martinis Above Fourth | Table + Stage, Wilson and Graphic Interfaces.


USTA National Open Hard Court Championships

Balboa Tennis Club, San Diego

Sunday’s Results

Men’s Singles Championship

Henry Craig (1), San Diego, def.  Nicholas Reyes (5), West Hollywood, Calif., 6-1, 6-1

Third Place

Oleksiy Arovin (9), Redmond, Wash., def. Jared Thompkins (17), San Diego, 6-0, 6-2

Men’s Doubles Championship

Damian Rodriguez, Princeton, N.J., and Ryan Seggerman (1), Coronado, def.  Ivan Smith and Xavier Smith (5), Chula Vista, 6-4, 6-2

Women’s Singles Championship

Taylor Johnson (3), Redondo Beach, Calif., def.  Julia Haynes (5), San Diego, 6-4, 6-2

Third Place

Cali Jankowski (4), Carlsbad, def.  Ashley Chang, Thornhill, Ontario, 6-1, 6-4

Women’s Doubles Championship

Cali Jankowski, Carlsbad and Danielle Willson, Newport Beach, Calif., def.  Julia Deming, Fallbrook and Julia Haynes (4), San Diego, 6-4, 6-3

Mixed Open Doubles


Emmanuel Mensah, Chula Vista and Hiromi Sasano (2), La Mesa, def. Sabastiani Leon, San Diego, and Curt Wheeler (1), Salem, Ore., 6-3, 6-2

For complete tournament results, go to:


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Cal State LA student excels on the tennis court and in the classroom Fri, 01 Jun 2018 06:19:56 +0000 Read more »]]> The email that would change Elizaveta Sokolova’s life landed in her inbox as she was walking into her high school graduation ceremony in Moscow, Russia.

In it was a full-ride scholarship offer for the 16-year-old to play tennis for the Golden Eagles at California State University, Los Angeles.

“I wanted to scream, to laugh, to cry. All of my emotions hit me so hard,” Sokolova says. “I couldn’t believe it.”

If she had stayed in Russia, Sokolova would have had to choose between pursuing higher education and athletics. But at Cal State LA, she fulfilled both dreams.

Photo credit: Cal State LA.

Four years later, the 20-year-old Alhambra resident will graduate in May with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science. She is the student speaker at the undergraduate ceremony for the College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Technology at Cal State LA.

Growing up, Sokolova passed on socializing with friends to focus on drills at the net. She opted not to attend school with children her age, skipping grades ahead for the greater academic challenge.

She developed an early affinity for math and science, and at age 16 passed a test to leave high school after just one year. She graduated and earned a gold medal in mathematics from the Russian government, an honor awarded to students who excel on final examinations in secondary education.

That unwavering discipline continued when Sokolova stepped onto Cal State LA’s campus.

Her days often started before sunrise, when she’d leave her apartment and head to a three-hour training session with her teammates, who became like a second family.

She juggled a full course load and the arduous demands of a collegiate athlete. Such a schedule would be challenging for most. But Sokolova was also a teenager navigating a new country and a new language, alone.

During her first two years of college, she kept a list of new words she heard throughout the day and didn’t know. She looked them up when she returned home.

Her knack for numbers helped Sokolova when it came time to choose her major: computer science. Her desire to show women can be at the top of the field also motivated her.

She excelled in her major and fell in love with the field of data science in a course during her senior year with Professor Mohammad Pourhomayoun.

Through the College of ECST’s Senior Design Project Program, Sokolova led a team of students who developed a web-map tool that allows the city of Los Angeles to track and prioritize its capital transportation projects.

Sokolova earned an Intercollegiate Tennis Association Scholar-Athlete Award and Academic All-PacWest Conference recognition for three years and was on the Dean’s List for four consecutive terms. In 2015-16, she received the Cal State LA Athletics Department Academic Achievement Award.

Sokolova received the Joe Shapiro Scholarship at the 20th Billie Jean King & Friends Gala in October 2017. The annual event celebrates student-athletes, humanitarians and Cal State LA alumna Billie Jean King, a world champion athlete and global advocate for social justice who has helped support hundreds of Golden Eagle student-athletes during the past two decades.

“She is a great example of how we should fight for women’s rights and minority rights,” Sokolova says of King, who she spent time with on various occasions during her years at Cal State LA.

After graduating in May with a 3.86 GPA, Sokolova hopes to pursue a career in data science, and forge new paths for women in the field.

“I don’t know if I can change the world, but at least step by step, maybe I can,” Sokolova says. “That’s my goal.”

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USTA National Open Hard Court Championships Kick Off in San Diego Tue, 29 May 2018 01:50:32 +0000 Read more »]]> After receiving first-round byes, the top-seeds in the men’s singles draw will be in action on Tuesday at the USTA National Open Hard Court Championships. The national tournament at the Balboa Tennis Club features some of the top Open-Division players in the country.

Top-seeded Henry Craig of Murrieta, Calif., will make his first appearance as he will play his second-round match against unseeded Gabriele Boccaccini of La Jolla, Calif., at 11 a.m.   The 23-year-old Craig has played primarily on the USTA Pro Circuit since turning professional in 2016 and is currently ranked No. 632 in the ATP World Tour singles rankings (as of 5/28/18).

Second-seeded Emanuel Mensah of Chula Vista, Calif., will play unseeded Tristen Shaw of San Diego in second-round action at 10:30 a.m. The 29-year-old Mensah, who represented his native country of Ghana in Davis Cup play, won the USTA National Open Hard Court Championships in 2015 and 2016.

Brian Battistone

In Monday’s men’s first-round singles action, 17th seeded Brian Battistone, a former ATP World Tour professional who was ranked as high as No. 88 in the world in doubles, advanced to the second round after dispatching Colin Palmer of La Jolla, Calif., 6-2, 6-1.  He will face unseeded Elijah Strode of El Cajon, Calif., in a second-round match on Tuesday at 1 p.m.

The 38-year-old Battistone, a Florida-based teaching professional came to Southern California with two of his players and decided to enter the men’s singles draw. “I’ve been coaching full-time for about five years. I focus on the coaching, but once in a while I get to play. I try to play occasionally,” he said. “I haven’t played in San Diego in a couple of years, so I’m looking forward to it. I would like to go as far as I can. I love the Open format, it’s fantastic. You see all types of different players.”

First-round action in the women’s singles draw will get underway at 9 a.m. on Tuesday. All of the women’s singles seeds, including top-seeded Jessica Failla of Ramona, Calif., received first-round byes and will play their opening matches on Wednesday.

Failla played collegiate tennis for USC for two seasons before transferring last year to Pepperdine University, where she was a red-shirt this past season. Failla won the tournament singles title at the Balboa Tennis Club in 2016 and was a singles finalist last year.

Second-seeded Nicole Mossmer of La Jolla, Calif., a former USTA Girls’ 16s National singles champion, withdrew from the women’s singles draw due to an injury. Nazari Urbina, a former Mexican Fed Cup player from Tijuana, B.C., will replace Mossmer in the draw.

In addition to singles divisions, players will also compete in Men’s Doubles, Women’s Doubles and Mixed Doubles divisions.  The champions in each division will be awarded a USTA gold ball, while the runner-up will receive a USTA silver ball. There will also be a 3rd/4th place playoff for the USTA bronze ball.  Prize money will be distributed to both finalists as well as third and fourth place finishers in each division.  All draws will have consolation events.

Scores and results for each day of the tournament can be viewed at the following link:

The starting times for the USTA National Open Hard Court Championships are as follows:

Tuesday, May 29 through Saturday, June 2 — 9 a.m.

Sunday, June 3 — 11 a.m. (Women’s Singles Final), Noon (Men’s Singles Final).

All times are PDT.

Admission and on-site parking at the Balboa Tennis Club is free and open to the public.

The USTA National Open Hard Court Championships was voted “Tournament of the Year” in 2011 by the San Diego District Tennis Association. The event has had several distinguished past champions and participants. U.S. Davis Cup star Jack Sock, who reached a career-high No. 8 in the ATP World Tour singles rankings last year, won the Men’s Singles Championship in 2010.

The 2018 USTA National Open Hard Court Championships are sponsored by United States Tennis Association, San Diego District Tennis Association, CH Court Tech, San Diego Aviators, Kashi, Martinis Above Fourth | Table + Stage, Wilson and Graphic Interfaces.

Monday’s Results
Men’s Singles First Round
Noah Dufort (17), Las Vegas, def. Roberto Ancira, San Diego, 6-1, 6-0
Jesse Ross (17), Ojai, Calif., def. David Evans, Encinitas, 6-2, 6-1
James Lievers, Escondido, def. Jesse Steinberg, Del Mar, 6-1, 6-1
Daniel Dulay, Chula Vista, def. Sam Hum, La Jolla, 6-3, 7-6
Jamie Vance, Henderson, Nev., def. Adham Pirbazari, Los Angeles, 6-1, 6-0
Xavier Smith (17), Chula Vista, def. Ryan Ghassemi, San Diego, 6-3, 6-4
Carlos Robles, Chula Vista, def. Christian Hausman, Los Angeles, 6-3, 7-5
Shawn Tran, San Diego, def. David Beach, Flower Mound, Texas, 6-1, 6-0
Brian Battistone (17), Las Vegas, Nev., def. Colin Palmer, La Jolla, 6-2, 6-1
Miguel Cuevas, San Diego, def. Rand Hogen, La Jolla, 6-0, Ret. (injury)
Alex Bose, Winter Haven, Fla., def. Matthew Mead, Corona Del Mar, Calif., 6-1, 6-3
Daniel Thornton, Naples, Fla., def. John Moore, Kenmore, Wash., 6-1, 6-1
Ryan Lee, La Canada Flintridge, Calif., def. Christopher Evola, Portland, Ore., 3-0, Ret. (injury)
Tristen Shaw, San Diego, def. Rico Gore, Washington, D.C., 6-4, 4-6, 6-2
Gabriele Boccaccini, La Jolla, def. Joon-ha Bae, Carlsbad, default
Andy Sun, Glendale, Ariz., def. Vincenzo Barba, Costa Mesa, Calif., 6-1, 6-0
Alexander Rushin (17), Rancho Santa Fe, def. Maddox Bose, Winter Haven, Fla., 6-0, 6-0
Danny Graves, Sioux City, Iowa, def. Job Zarate, San Diego, 6-3, 6-0
Andrew Ely, Boca Raton, Fla., def. Will Morrison, San Diego, 6-0, 6-0
David Hough, San Diego, def. Solomon Cadogan, Lauderhill, Fla., 6-4, 6-2
Sean Robles, Yorba Linda, Calif., def. Matthew Coelho, El Centro, 6-0, 6-0
Marco Alvarez, Chula Vista, def. Ryan Adam Stanbury, Los Angeles, 6-2, 6-3
Cliff Comfort, San Diego, def. Brian Espinoza, Chula Vista, 6-3, 4-6, 6-1
William Ellis, El Paso, Texas, def. Mike Palacio, El Centro, Calif., 7-5, 6-3
Ivan Smith, Chula Vista, def. Rafael Maniego, San Diego, 6-0, 6-0
Graham Maassen (17), Santa Barbara, Calif., def. Sebastian Gomez Romero, Palm Desert, Calif., 6-0, 6-3
Vidal Castillo, Chula Vista, def. Trent Aaron, San Diego, 7-6, 3-6, 6-2
Jayson Blando, San Diego, def. Alan Pleat, Roslyn, N.Y., 6-3, 7-5
Dan Lempa, Palm Desert, Calif., def. Peter Dougherty, Solana Beach, 6-0, 6-1
Jack Vance, Henderson, Nev., def. Austin Marking, Chula Vista, 6-1, 6-0

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Avila Bay Club Tournament To Host UTR Division Sat, 26 May 2018 01:36:38 +0000 Read more »]]> Avila Bay Athletic Club Tennis Director Michael Marquez has always been a big fan of the Universal Tennis Rating system, simply known in tennis circles as UTR.

UTR is a number between 1–16.5 that a tennis player is allocated based on your level of play. Three factors go into the rating: competition, score and recent history.

Delanie Dunkle, left, will play in the UTR round-robin division this weekend at the Vince Dente Memorial Tournament.

As the Director of this Memorial Weekend’s popular Vince Dente Memorial Tournament, Marquez is for the first time promoting a UTR division where six players will play a round-robin with each other, guaranteeing each player five matches.

“It’s the old Wayne Bryan way, give the kids the best experience you can,” said Marquez, who is from Ventura, played his college tennis at Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo and trained as a young junior under the watchful eye of Bryan at the Cabrillo Racquet Club in Camarillo. “A parent doesn’t want to have to drive an hour and half, lose first round and turn around and have to go home. This keeps the players in town for each day of the tournament, and they simply get more out of the experience.”

Marquez said one of the UTR featured matches for Sunday will pit top area high school boys’ player Colby Grey (UTR 10.27) against the top female Delanie Dunkle (UTR 9.67).

Other matches will include: Madelyn Ferreros vs. Zach Hilty, and George Godde vs. Turner Loughead. That’s a female versus male matchup, and an adult against a junior. All with similar UTRs.

“It will be cool to see the top boy play the top girl because we never get to see that,” Marquez said. “UTR now gives us the chance to match up players with similar rankings, regardless of gender or age.“

Even USC Men’s Coach Peter Smith is a big fan, saying on the UTR website: “The first question I ask is, ‘What is your UTR?’ UTR is the new global gold standard in recruiting.”

To learn more about UTR, go to:

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USTA National Open Hardcourt Championships Starts Monday Fri, 25 May 2018 16:15:23 +0000 Read more »]]> The USTA National Open Hard Court Championships, which feature some of the top Open Division players in the country, will get underway at 9 a.m. on Monday, May 28 at the Balboa Tennis Club, 2221 Morley Field Drive, San Diego, CA 92104. The national tennis tournament will continue through Sunday, June 3.

The men’s singles draw, which has over 100 competitors, is headlined by top-seeded Henry Craig of Murrieta, Calif.  The 23-year-old Craig played four years of collegiate tennis at the University of Denver. After graduating in 2016, he turned professional and since then has played primarily on the USTA Pro Circuit. Craig is currently ranked No. 629 in the ATP World Tour singles rankings (as of 5/21/18).

Former two-time tournament singles champion Emanuel Mensah of Chula Vista, Calif., is seeded second. The 29-year-old Mensah, who represented his native country of Ghana in Davis Cup play, won the USTA National Open Hard Court Championships in 2015 and 2016.

Jessica Failla of Ramona, Calif., is the top-seed in the women’s singles draw. Failla played collegiate tennis for USC for two seasons before transferring last year to Pepperdine University, where she was a red-shirt this past season. Failla won the tournament singles title at the Balboa Tennis Club in 2016 and was a singles finalist last year.

Nicole Mossmer, a former USTA Girls’ 16s National singles champion, is seeded second. The 17-year-old from La Jolla, Calif., reached the second-round of the Australian Open Junior Championships in January this year. Over 40 players are entered in the women’s singles draw.

“This is such a unique national tennis event with aspiring professionals, collegiate players and top juniors among the entries competing for the title,” said Tournament Director Colleen Clery Ferrell. “We’re amazed with the depth of the draws this year. It’s going to be a very exciting week of high-level Open Division tennis. I invite tennis fans to come and enjoy the matches all week.”

In addition to singles divisions, players will also compete in Men’s Doubles, Women’s Doubles and Mixed Doubles divisions.  The champions in each division will be awarded a USTA gold ball, while the runner-up will receive a USTA silver ball. There will also be a 3rd/4th place playoff for the USTA bronze ball.  Prize money will be distributed to both finalists as well as third and fourth place finishers in each division.  All draws will have consolation events.

The list of seeded players and draws for each division can be viewed at the following link:

The starting times for each day of the tournament will be as follows:
Monday, May 28 through Saturday, June 2 — 9 a.m.
Sunday, June 3 — 11 a.m. (Women’s Singles Final), Noon (Men’s Singles Final).
All times are PDT.

Admission for spectators is free and open to the public. On-site parking is free.

The USTA National Open Hard Court Championships was voted “Tournament of the Year” in 2011 by the San Diego District Tennis Association. The event has had several distinguished past champions and participants. U.S. Davis Cup star Jack Sock, who reached a career-high No. 8 in the ATP World Tour singles rankings last year, won the Men’s Singles Championship in 2010. Coco Vandeweghe, a semifinalist at last year’s Australian Open and US Open, earned a USTA bronze ball at the 2007 Hard Court Championships. Former WTA touring professionals Gretchen Rush and Ros Nideffer won the Women’s Open Doubles title seven times, while Allison Bradshaw captured the Women’s Open Singles title in 2007.

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USTA SoCal Ramps Up Programs for 18-39 Age Group Mon, 21 May 2018 17:01:10 +0000 Read more »]]> With the summer months ahead of us, USTA Southern California is committed to bringing fun programs to young adults in the region.

Over the past few years, we’ve seen more and more young people enter into USTA programs, and we continue to evolve our programs to reflect our 18-to-39 population. The USTA has great programs for the uber-competitive player, and we continue to enhance opportunities for the social and recreational tennis player.

Be part of USTA Southern California 18-to-39 leagues and socials, playing alongside peers, friends, and colleagues! There are no DQ’s, and only a few rules. The programs are SOCIALLY competitive… break a sweat and meet cool new people in your area at the same time. We’ll be experimenting with different play formats, and pushing our players to put a new spin on their tennis!

The best way to stay up to date on all the things we are doing for young adults it to join our 18-39 Facebook Group. We’ve also created an 18-39 website to house all of our programs – like Sip ‘N Serve, 18-39 league play, and a general 18-39 calendar for one-day play days and tennis parties.

If you need any additional information on our young adult efforts, feel free to contact Madeline Segura (

Let’s do this!


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SCTA celebrates two USPTA honorees Fri, 18 May 2018 18:13:25 +0000 Read more »]]> The USTA Southern California Section is proud to announce that two staff members were honored this month by the United States Professional Tennis Association (USPTA) for their outstanding service and accomplishments. Recipients were Cari Buck, who was recognized as Southern California Professional of the Year, and District 2 (San Fernando Valley) Pro of the Year Kevin Finkelberg.

A USPTA certified pro for more than twenty years, Cari Buck is the current Director of Marketing and Communications at USTA Southern California. She is also the presiding USPTA National Board Vice President and former Board President for the USPTA Southern California Division.

The USPTA Southern California Professional of the Year recognizes a member who, over a career, has demonstrated exemplary achievement in seven areas, including: contributions to USPTA and USTA; as a teaching professional, player and coach; in education, research and publications; and with other organizations, achievements and contributions.

Kevin Finkelberg has been a USPTA member since 2016 and staff member with USTA since 2015. With the TGA Premier Tennis organization, Kevin coaches 10-and-under players while managing more than 35 schools and over 20 coaches through TGA’s after school programming. He also mentored five TGA coaches as they earned USPTA certifications.

District Pro of the Year awards recognize outstanding achievement from pros in each of the six Southern California districts.

Other award recipients honored by the USPTA were: Pro of the Year in District 1 Tracie Currie, Julio Rivera (District 3), Ken Shoji (District 4), Joe Abrams (District 5), Mitch Bridge (District 6), Simon Paek (Diversity Award), LeGeorge Mauldin (STARS), and Robin Shelton (Manager of the Year, SeaCliff Country Club). Steve Johnson, Sr. was remembered with the Pete Brown Memorial/Lifetime Achievement Award.

The awards banquet was held in Huntington Beach on May 5. To learn more about the USPTA, visit

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Top-Seeded Nifdeffer Continues Senior Tennis Dominance Sun, 13 May 2018 02:28:11 +0000 Read more »]]> Former WTA professional Ros Nideffer of San Diego (Rancho Bernardo) continued her dominance in the USTA National Women’s Senior 50-90 Hard Court Tennis Championships as she defeated second-seeded Andrea Rice of Bethesda, Md., 6-4, 6-4 to win the 50 and Over singles title for the fifth consecutive year.

Nideffer, who was seeded No. 1 this week, has won the USTA National 50 and Over Hard Court singles championship six times in the last seven years at the La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club. She did not enter the event in 2013.

After winning her semifinal match on Thursday, Nideffer, a former two-time Wimbledon quarterfinalist, expected a tough match against Rice in the final. In their last meeting, Nideffer had to rally for a hard-fought 4-6, 6-1, 7-5 victory in the semifinals of the ITF Seniors World Individual Championships on clay in Miami Beach, Fla., last November.

Under cool and cloudy conditions on Friday, Rice and Nideffer played aggressively throughout the one-hour and 50-minute match as both competitors used a serve and volley game to get to the net and put away winners. After exchanging service breaks twice in the first set, Nideffer broke Rice for the third time in the tenth game to win the set in 48 minutes.

In the second set, Nideffer took a 5-3 lead and served for the match, but Rice broke back in the ninth game to close the margin to 5-4. However, the 57-year-old Nideffer came back and broke serve in the next game to clinch the championship.

“It feels really good because Andrea played really well today. It feels good that I was able to hang on and pull it out. I just told myself that I had to be aggressive,” Nideffer said following her USTA Gold Ball presentation. “This title ranks a bit higher because I’m getting older.”

Later in day, Nideffer added another USTA National title as she teamed with Debbie Spence-Nasim of Carlsbad, Calif., for a 6-3, 6-2 victory over Deborah Higa of Solana Beach, Calif., and Jami Jones of Del Mar, Calif., in the women’s 50 and Over doubles final.

Top-seeded and defending champion Susan Wright of Grand Junction, Colo., wrapped up the 60 and Over singles title as she overcame fifth-seeded Shannon Gordon-Carney of Saint Louis 6-3, 6-2. Wright dropped a total of 12 games in four matches on her way to winning the championship.

In the 70 and Over singles final, Brenda Carter, the top-seed from Charleston, S.C., defeated second-seeded Molly Hahn of Belmont, Mass., 7-5, 6-4 in one-hour and 47 minutes to successfully defend her title.

Saturday’s schedule will feature the 80 and Over singles championship between top-seed and defending champion Roz King of San Diego (Encanto) and second-seeded Dori Devries of Reno, Nev., at 10:30 a.m.

The top female tennis competitors (ages 50 to 90+) from across the United States are competing for USTA gold balls, which are awarded to national champions.  Events in the national tennis tournament include singles and doubles in the 50, 60, 70, 80 and 90 & over age divisions.

Women’s 50 Singles Championship
Ros Nideffer (1), San Diego, def. Andrea Rice (2), Bethesda, Md., 6-4, 6-4
Women’s 60 Singles Championship
Susan Wright (1), Grand Junction, Colo., def. Shannon Gordon-Carney (5), Saint Louis, 6-3, 6-2
Women’s 70 Singles Championship
Brenda Carter (1), Charleston, S.C., def. Molly Hahn (2), Belmont, Mass., 7-5, 6-4
 Women’s 80 Singles Semifinals
Roz King (1), San Diego, def. Dorothy Wasser (5), Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., 6-2, 6-0
Dori Devries (2), Reno, Nev., def. Burnette Herrick (3), Tarboro, N.C., 6-2, 6-2

For complete scores and results, go to:

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Final 118th Ojai Tennis Results Mon, 30 Apr 2018 18:11:35 +0000 Read more »]]>


Pac-12 Men’s Team Championship: No. 1 UCLA def. No. 3 USC, 4-1

Pac-12 Women’s Team Championship: No. 1 Stanford def. No. 2 UCLA, 4-2

Boys’ 14s Singles Final:

(5) Lachlan Robertson (West Vancouver, BC) d. (5) Conrad Brown (Irvine), 6-2, 6-2

Boys’ 16s Singles Final:

(3) Shervin Dehmoubed (Irvine) d. (9) Ayato Arakaki (Ojai), 4-6, 6-1, 6-3

CIF Boys’ Singles:

Stefan Dostanic (Woodbridge) d. Benjamin Gollin (La Jolla Country Day), 6-1, 7-6(3)

Note: Woodbridge wins overall high school Griggs Cup

CIF Boys’ Doubles:

Timothy Li/Sacha Pritzker (Harvard-Westlake) d. Sundeep Chakladar/Kai Brady (Redondo Union), 7-6 (6), 6-4

Girls’ 14s Singles Final:

(1) Isabelle Kouzmanov d. (2) Iris Berman (Los Angeles), 6-3, 6-2

Girls’ 16s Singles Final:

(1) Casie Wooten (Torrance) d. (4) Scout Mathews (Ojai), 6-3, 1-6, 6-3

Girls’ 18s Singles Final:

(5) Eryn Cayetano (Corona) d. (1) Nicole Mossmer (La Jolla), 6-3, 4-6, 6-2

Girls’ 18s Doubles Final:

(1) Amanda Chan (Pasadena)/Lauren Ko (Temple City) d. (2) Katherine Nguyen (Fountain Valley)/ Danielle Willson (Newport Beach), 7-5, 6-2

Men’s Open Singles: (1) Sebastian Fanselow (Calabasas) def. (2) Philip Bester (Westlake Village), 4-6, 6-0, 6-4

Men’s Open Doubles: (4) Sebastian Fanelow (Calabasas) / Lester Cook (Ojai) d. (2) Haythem Abid (Los Angeles) / Rylan Rizza (Redondo Beach), 6-3, 3-6, 7-5

Women’s Open Singles: (1) Hanna Chang (Fontana) d. Denise Star (Brooklyn, N.Y.), 6-4, 6-1

Women’s Open Doubles: (1) Maegan Manasse (Berkeley)/Denise Starr (Brooklyn, N.Y.) Sarah Lee (Los Angeles)/Holly Verner (Los Angeles), 6-0, 6-0

Men’s Division III West Singles: (1) Nikolai Parodi (Claremont McKenna) d. (2) Jed Kronenberg (Pomona-Pitzer), 6-2, 6-0

Men’s Division III West Doubles: (1) Julian Gordy/Nikolai Parodi (CMS) d. Varun Shanker/James Wei (Cal Tech), 6-4, 6-7, 6-3

Women’s Division III West Singles: (1) Mary Cardone (Southwestern) d. (3) Alisa Ogranovich (Chapman) 6-1, 6-1

Women’s Division III West Doubles: (1) Mary Cardone/Anna Schneemann (Southwestern) d. (2) Sanna Liu/Kana Moriyama (Cal Tech), 6-2, 6-2

Men’s Independent College Singles: (1) Ransom Braaten (Cal Lutheran) d. (2) Keaten Baker (Occidental), 6-2, 6-2

Men’s Independent College Doubles: (2) Ranson Braaten /Joshua Legardy (Cal Lutheran) d. Miles Hale / Corey Stephens (Westmont), 3-6, 6-3, 10-5

Men’s California Community College Athletic Association Dual Team State Championship: Cerritos College d. American River, 5-0

Women’s California Community College Athletic Association Dual Team State Championship: Cerritos College d. De Anza College, 5-0

Men’s California Community College Athletic Association Singles: (7) Alexy Prokopchuk (Cerritos) def. (1) Kent Hunter (Cerritos), 6-3, 6-4

Men’s California Community College Athletic Association Doubles: (2) Alexy Prokopchuk/ Marcos Silvestre (Cerritos) d. (1) Victor Castro/Kent Hunter (Cerritos), 3-6, 7-6 (5), 10-4

Women’s California Community College Athletic Association Singles: (6) Kseniia Prokopchuk (Cerritos) d. (2) Sandra DeFrancescu (De Anza), 6-4, 6-2

 Women’s California Community College Athletic Association Doubles: (1) Kseniia Prokopchuk/Lisa Suzuki (Cerritos) d. (3) Eva Spindler/ Lilana Spindler (American River), 6-3, 6-0

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Roy Emerson Adoption Guild Tennis Classic comes Memorial Day Weekend Mon, 30 Apr 2018 17:10:29 +0000 Read more »]]> Continuing a 57-year-old tradition in Southern California, tennis aficionados will gather over Memorial Day weekend for the celebrated Adoption Guild Tournament. This USTA-sanctioned, 4-day event will be hosted by the Palisades Tennis Club in Newport Beach. Other local clubs, including The Tennis Club at Newport Beach Country Club, Racquet Club of Irvine, and Mesa Verde, will host some of the early rounds. $15,000 in Prize money for the Open, Men’s 35s, and 50 & Over Divisions, is being proudly sponsored by the Orange County Breakers. A Consolation Round is being held for all divisions.

The tournament is named for Australian-born tennis champion Roy Emerson. A two-time Wimbledon victor in 1964 and 1965, Emerson, along with his wife Joy (a tennis-pro and former Adoption Guild winner herself), have fronted the Adoption Guild Classic for more than two decades. “It’s a labor of love,” says the long-time Orange County couple, adding “We believe in the fine work of the Adoption Guild in support of HFS—Holy Family Services. What’s more important than caring for children?”

On Finals Day, Monday, May 28th, a Sponsor Garden overlooking center court will offer the best seats in the house for the finals matches: a table for 6 includes a champagne brunch along with beer, wine, and food all day long as a benefit of a $1,000 Sponsorship donation. A highlight of Finals Day is an address by Roy Emerson, a not-to-be missed speech in which he shares a bit of history on his lifelong love of the sport as well as his take on the current state of the game worldwide.

Highlights of this event include the Tournament Party on Saturday night, May 26th, beginning at 6 pm at The Tennis Club at Newport Beach Country Club. The party, with food stations hosted by the area’s finest restaurants and complimentary beer and wine, is free to all tournament participants and $25 for guests who are age 21 and older. On Finals Day, Monday, May 28th, Adoption Guild Sponsors and guests will enjoy matches on center court from the Sponsor Garden at Palisades Tennis Club.

The Tennis Classic is led by Adoption Guild co-chairs Katie Richardson and Libby Doughty, Tennis Director Rob Rye with the assistance of Brad Albert, and is held under the USTA umpire supervision of Laurel Smith. Players are welcome to sign up for men’s and women’s open singles, men’s, women’s, and mixed open doubles, men’s 35s doubles, as well as a series of NTRP men’s and women’s 3.5 – 5.5 singles, doubles and mixed. And, the Guild is offering a new division this year, 50 & Over, where players may enter men’s or women’s singles and doubles.

To register, please visit and click on the Tennis Tournament tab. For information on the tournament, the party or to inquire about sponsorship, please e-mail

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