San Diego County Tennis – Southern California Tennis News Tennis News, Events, Community Activities, Tournaments Wed, 15 Aug 2018 16:44:30 +0000 en-US hourly 1 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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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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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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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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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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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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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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Tournament Spotlights Spring 2018 Fri, 20 Apr 2018 18:53:52 +0000 Read more »]]> Adult Tennis Tournaments

Sanctioned by the USTA in San Diego, the Hendrickson Wheelchair Classic returns for the 19th year on May 19-20 at Balboa Tennis Club. Eighteen different divisions (Open/A/B/C) will compete including Men’s and Women’s singles and doubles, plus Quad singles and doubles. Entries are due by May 13. The event is open to USTA members. For complete information via USTA TennisLink (Tournament #650004318) or click here.

The USTA National Senior, Super Sr., Ultra Sr. Father / Son & Mother / Daughter Hard Court Championships will be held June 8-10 at Claremont Mudd Scripps Colleges in Claremont, Calif. Six different divisions (with age guidelines) will combine parents and their children in competitive national competition. Entry to this tournament is open to all USTA members and must be submitted by Sunday, June 3. For complete information, visit USTA TennisLink (Tourn. ID #651768218) or click here.


Junior Tennis Tournaments

Junior Team Tennis will hold its Spring Sectional Championships at the Great Park in Irvine (and throughout Orange County) on June 2-3. SoCal’s brightest young talents will compete at various levels. For more information, contact Junior Team Tennis Manager Ken Grassel at



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Family Spotlight: The Svajda Clan From San Diego Mon, 02 Apr 2018 19:05:03 +0000 Read more »]]> It’s a fun family affair when USPTA Pro Tom Svajda heads to the courts at Pacific Beach Tennis Club in San Diego. For years, he has trained adults and juniors of all ages at this beautiful site next to Mission Bay. He also trains his two sons on a daily basis with a unique formula for success.

Trevor Svajda, Zachary Svajda and Uros Petronijevic


So what makes this San Diego-based teaching professional so different? He has opted to give his two sons, Zachary and Trevor, a different look at tennis development. Both are home-schooled and spend their mornings on the court developing their games primarily outside of the USTA Junior Tennis Tournament offerings. Zachary, 15, and Trevor, 12, have opted to focus on training, fitness and a lot of practice sets with top players in lieu of tournaments most weekends.

The results are trickling in as Zachary, a 9thgrader, recently reached the quarterfinals of the Pacific Coast Men’s Doubles Championships with coach and partner Uros Petronijevic, the former No. 1 player from the University of San Diego. Zachary and Petronijevic were seeded 5th and defeated teams from UC Davis, USD and Oregon State University. They eventually lost to a top team from USC.

Petronijevic, an All-America selection from Serbia, led University of San Diego men’s team to four straight West Coast Conference Championships from 2014 to 2017. He now shares his experience and insight with the two Svajda boys. He is teaching tennis part time at Pacific Beach Tennis Club and has future plans to travel with the boys for ITF events.

“It sounds great to play in ITF’s but the truth is that it’s hard work,” Petronijevic said. “I’ve told Zach stories about the tour but until he experiences it, he won’t understand. The other possibility is college tennis but that is still in the future.”


USPTA Pro Tom Svajda at Pacific Beach Tennis Club

Trevor trains with local male and female college players to hone his skills. He has plans to add more USTA tournaments into his schedule similar to his brother.  For the moment, however, the Sajvda family is happy with their tennis lifestyle.


“The boys are getting their education and great tennis from local players,” Svajda said. “They’ve only played a few tournaments recently to allow them the opportunity focus on improving. We’re enjoying tennis, and as long as the boys are having fun we will keep   going. It’s a different way to do things but it works for us. ”

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San Diego Celebrates Tennis Night at Petco Park on June 30 Mon, 02 Apr 2018 19:02:37 +0000 Read more »]]> Tennis and baseball are a perfect pair!

All are welcome to join the San Diego Tennis Community for Tennis Night to see the Padres play at Petco Park in San Diego on Saturday, June 30, against the Pirates.  Tickets are available through Balboa Tennis Club. Perks include receiving a Trevor Hoffman 500th Save Commemorative Bobblehead and a postgame laser show.

For ticket information, contact Geoff Griffin at, or go to There will be a $2 donation for every ticket purchased to benefit the San Diego District Tennis Association Wounded Warrior Program.

For groups of 10 or more, contact Meagan Maroney at (619) 795-5358 or email



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San Diego Christian College Men’s and Women’s Teams in the Hunt for Conference Championships Thu, 29 Mar 2018 17:30:12 +0000 Read more »]]> The San Diego Christian College women’s team recently defeated Arizona Christian College, 6-3, thanks to “Team Sarah.” The freshmen duo of No. 1 Sarah Schaerer from Switzerland and No. 2 Sarah Urbanek from Germany helped the Hawks to their 4-0 record in the Golden State Athletic Conference this season. San Diego Christian College is 7-5 overall, and are the defending GSAC Conference Champions.

With the season coming to a close, San Diego Christian College Women’s Coach Jim Bodor has encouraged his team to keep playing solid tennis. The Hawks previously lost, 6-3, to Arizona Christian College in an earlier match to even out their meetings 1-1 this season, and were thrilled with this victory.  The San Diego Christian men’s team defeated defending GSAC conference champion Arizona Christian College, 6-3, in an upset victory. They are now 6-5 overall, and 3-1 in conference.  


Schaerer and Urbanek, also nicknamed “Team Sarah,”are excited to be living in San Diego and experience life in the United States. Both enjoy playing on California hard courts  in the sunshine.

“I grew up playing on outdoor clay and indoor carpet,” said Urbanek, from Hamm, Germany. “It’s nice to have a consistent bounce on the hard surface and I’m glad I don’t have to think about sliding.”

Other observations from “Team Sarah” include playing sports at the university level, which is not available in their respective countries. San Diego Christian College offers athletic scholarships as part of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) association that promotes teamwork, sportsmanship, respect, fairness and doing one’s best regardless of the outcome.



“Back at home we play on our own,” said Sarah Schaerer. “Here we play for our team and we are part of something really great. There are people who care about you. It’s like having a family in America.”

San Diego Christian College hosts Hope International University on April 7 at Lake Murray Tennis Club in San Diego. The GSAC Tournament will be held on April 19-20 at Indian Wells Tennis Garden.

“Every match is so critical,” said Bodor, also the San Diego Christian College men’s head coach. “We have a shot at a repeat (conference) title but much depends on what happens with the next few weeks.”

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INDIAN WELLS: In defeat, Nakashima wins Indian Wells fans Wed, 07 Mar 2018 01:30:56 +0000 Read more »]]> Near the end, someone at courtside said rather apologetically, “He’s young.”

Brandon Nakashima (USTA SoCal/D.Nash)

But this was not simply a flippant observation of 16-year old Brandon Nakashima, the San Diegan and top rated national collegiate recruit. It was as much a compliment to a young man who showed some fight in what could have been a lopsided affair on the main stage at Stadium 2 at the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells on Tuesday.

Faced with a daunting task – the 27-year old Canadian Vasek Posposil, a former Wimbledon doubles champion – Nakashima was an automatic crowd favorite. In front of a sizeable audience, the first round Qualifying match turned heavily in favor of Posposil, who raced out to a comfortable lead in the first set. With a combination of punches ranging from electric service aces to powerful forehand winners, Posposil secured the opening set at 6-0, leaving the young Nakashima to return to the sideline in search of a feasible answer.

After losing the seventh straight game, Nakashima broke through with the first of his own, and the Indian Wells crowd roared with approval. Combining serve and volley with accelerated groundstrokes equivalent to his experienced opponent, Nakashima held his own all the way to a 5-4 lead in the second set, as the crowd voiced its support with cheers of “Let’s go Brandon” heard throughout.

Posposil regrouped, however, retooling his game for a quick tiebreaker highlighted by excellent serves, closing out a first round victory, 6-0, 7-6(3).
Still, in the jazzed arena, the story was Nakashima. His tennis career still unfolding, the youngster is sure to return to this stage again and again, with years of experience in his favor.

Also in Men’s action, former UCLA Bruin Mackenzie McDonald notched a straight set win over Glendale’s Alex Sarkissian, and Marcos Giron (Thousand Oaks) is due on court later this evening.


The women’s Qualifier continued on Tuesday, beginning with Ashley Kratzer coming off a rousing victory over the top seed. Her second round opponent, fellow American Sachia Vickery, began with Kratzer (Newport Beach) continuing the dominant play that worked to her benefit a day before. But once Vickery turned the tide, Kratzer suffered again from untimely errors. Unable to regain momentum, Kratzer fell in straight sets.

The men’s Main Draw was announced this afternoon, including a first round match between Taylor Fritz (Rancho Santa Fe) and 20-year old wild card Reilly Opelka. SoCal’s Jared Donaldson (Irvine) will meet a to-be named qualifier, while Steve Johnson (Redondo Beach) faces off with Daniil Medvedev of Russia. The celebrated American Frances Tiafoe meets wild card Ernesto Escobedo (West Covina) and Poway’s Bradley Klahn meets Thomas Fabbiano of Italy in the opening round. The #18 seed Sam Querrey also enjoys a first round bye.

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San Diego JTT Spring Season Kicks Off with Coaches Meeting at La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club Tue, 27 Feb 2018 21:25:12 +0000 Read more »]]> The Spring Junior Team Tennis season started with a gathering of about two dozen coaches who share a meal, learned new rules and offered feedback to JTT San Diego Area Coordinator Conan Lorenzo recently at the La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club. Lorenzo, also the Director of Tennis at La Jolla Beach and Tennis, ran the meeting with his usual generosity and good-natured leadership style. He was joined by Ken Grassel, the Manager of JTT for Southern California. The two offered the following information.

  1. Jan 24: Registration Begins
  2. Feb 18: Deadline to Create Teams
  3. Feb 25: Last day to register players; season begins
  4. May: Season Ends
  • Blackout dates are the following Sundays: USPTA Day, Mother’s Day and Easter. It will be up to the coaches to determine if they can have the match or not on those 3 days noted above. If both coaches can reschedule the match for another day, that would be fine. BNP Paribas Open weekends are NOT blackout dates.
  • T-Shirts: New Balance and San Diego Aviators will be helping with shirts this season. Please Contact Borja with NB at If you would like to get the San Diego Aviators Logo on the shirt, Jim Ault is willing to help with partial payment. Please email Jim at:
  • 10U Orange Ball Division will be using correct sidelines for singles this season and moving forward. Therefore we need lines for each baseline and also each sideline. We are doing this to keep in line with USTA rules and regulations for 10U orange ball.
  • Time Changes: We will be allowing time changes for clubs who have a lot of teams. Therefore look at the schedule closely to make sure you see the correct start time as not all clubs will be at the same “11:30am, 1:00pm, 2:30pm, 4:30pm and 5:00pm” start time possibly. We are growing with teams and therefore small time adjustments may need to be made.
  • Same scoring: We will keep the same scoring format as what the website indicates. However, if both coaches agree to a deviation of incorporating “ads” or “no ads” that is just fine, however the format of 8 game, best 2 of 3 and so forth needs to stay the same due to “score entry” into the USTA site.
  • USTA Points for Play and UTR: The 18U will start to get their results inputted for UTR results, which is a plus.
  • Net Generation Equipment:  SCTA Tennis Service Representative Karen Ronney spoke on Net Generation updates, 10U programs equipment purchases and SCTA Net Generation school’s tennis programs. For information, email
  • 14U same scoring: We may see the 14U 3.5 have best 2 of 3 sets with a tiebreaker for the 3rd played at Sectionals. Ken G. will look over the concept and see if it can be applied based on # of courts, hours and # of players.
  • Divisions: 10U to 14U: 10U cannot play in the 14U unless they have gone through the youth progression. A 10U can play on a 12U team though if they have a rating applicable to the level.
  • Setting the Tone: Make sure Assistant Coaches set the tone right when talking to parents and players at the beginning of the matches. See this site for what is expected of all coaches when doing a line-up, speaking to players/parents and more:

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San Diego Coach Receives the Eugene Jung Multicultural Award Tue, 27 Feb 2018 21:14:22 +0000 Read more »]]> Coach Stan Jefferson knows what it takes to reach high levels of athletic success and he has helped many players achieve the same. He has been coaching for over 30 years and has made a huge impact on the Southern California tennis community. For his efforts, he received the  Eugene Jung Multicultural Award recently from the Southern California Tennis Association.

Jefferson is a USPTA professional and he works with diverse multicultural students at Mountain View Sports and Racquet Club at Martin Luther King Park in Southeast San Diego. He also teaches recreational classes at Miramar College. He has created a culture of inclusion for all players of all races who want to learn the game of tennis. He offers training to students in group settings where many different levels work together. Through this, he builds a mentoring system that has worked for many years . Top players inspire younger ones by displaying a strong work ethic, dedication and motivation.


“The younger players see what it takes to be top-ranked in So Cal or nationally,” said Jefferson, a  A standout player at Texas Southern University. “It takes some of the mystery out of the path to success. They are directly part of the process. “

Jefferson’s sets his expectations high for all players in his programs. In fact, athletic success runs in his family. His brother is John “J.J.” Jefferson, the former great Chargers wide receiver, who made Pro Bowl appearances in each of his three seasons with the team. J.J. was the 14th overall pick in the 1978 draft and was a key part of the “Air Coryell” offense. He led the NFL in touchdown catches as a rookie.

Stan, a talented athlete like his brother, picked up tennis at age 14 but worked hard to earn a scholarship at Texas Southern University. He was the team captain three of the four years.

“I played No. 6 singles,” Jefferson said. “I was pretty good but I wasn’t the best player. The reason why I was named captain was because of my work ethic. Coach knew that I would get up early and get my team going on morning runs. I learned that hard work counted for a lot.”

Said Texas Southern University teammate Mark Edmonds: “Stan works on their tennis and their minds. He knows there is a window of learning and he gives them as much information as possible in that critical time. He sees the obstacles that need to be overcome and he keeps their heads straight with the right aspirations.”

Jefferson transferred that same drive and determination to succeed from competing to coaching. In 1981, Jefferson moved from Texas to Tierrasanta, the latter a lush, hilly and quiet neighborhood of San Diego. He worked in a sporting goods store, and did not expect to become a coach.

“I thought that coaching was something you did when you couldn’t become a professional player,” he said.  “It proved you weren’t able to succeed in tennis. I was wrong. Being a coach is a different type of success. You can have a great impact on kids in a much better way.”

Three decades later, Jefferson has helped hundreds of kids learn the game and several have earned college scholarships as well as sectional and national rankings. Top players were Tiffany Filipovich (South Dakota State) and Francis Filipovich (Idaho State University ), Jwany Sherif, Shayee Sherif, Lawee Sherif, and Siem and Winta Woldab.

“I fully understand my role in their success,” Jefferson said. “If a kid has a chance to reach his or her goals it depends on me to create the right environment. You can’t be going thru the motions and you can’t wing it. You have to provide the right kind of practice and training.”

Jefferson is a no nonsense coach with a big heart. He is one of the reasons for Siem Woldab’s success. Woldab is first generation American-born to immigrant parents from Eritea, East Africa. He was named to the 2017 USA National Junior Team and reached the semifinals of the USTA Boys’ 16s Nationals at Kalamazoo last summer. Jefferson offered Woldab two training sessions per day last year and that made all of the difference.

Coach Stan Jefferson and Siem Woldab

“We worked out before school at (6 to 7:30am) and again after school,” said Woldab, now a junior at Helix High. “I want to go pro. I know it will be hard but I have the drive. I am willing to do what is necessary.”

Jefferson believes a player’s success is dependent on the environment created by the coach. He is also realistic about helping parents and players establish goals and expectations.  He has heart to heart talks with parents to let them know that if tennis is not a top priority then he or she is not a match to becoming a great player in Southern California or in the nation.


“Playing once or twice a week is not going to do it and parents need to understand that,” Jefferson said. “That’s okay though because it helps us set other goals like making a high school team. It’s important to allow them to make the choice because the have to do the work either way.”

For those with drive and determination, however, Jefferson is willing to go the extra mile.

“If a coach is not trying to produce a world class athlete then you won’t get one,” Jefferson said. “You have to believe in the potential of each athlete, and help them reach their dreams and aspirations. How much work, dedication and motivation they bring to the court us up to them. When they walk onto the court to perform, my job is done. At that point, it is up to them.”






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Spring Wheelchair Schedule Tue, 27 Feb 2018 01:33:41 +0000 Read more »]]> The Wheelchair & Adaptive Tennis schedule is getting busy with multiple wheelchair events on the horizon.

If you’re ready to get out there and hit, consider some of these upcoming SoCal tournaments!

April 7-8
5th Annual West Coast Wheelchair Tennis Classic
Warner Center Tennis in Woodland Hills, CA
USTA TennisLink: #650015318
contact: Jerry Russell 818-429-4435

April 29
Whittier Up/Down
Palm Park in Whittier, CA
Free event, Prizes for all Participants
To reserve your spot email:

May 19-20
Hendrickson Tournament
Balboa Tennis Center in San Diego, CA
USTA TennisLink: #650004318

June 2-3
Southern California Sectionals
Lakewood Tennis Center in Lakewood, CA
USTA – tennislink 651721618

June 21-24
Angel City Games
L.A. Tennis Center at UCLA

June 30
One Day Beginner’s Clinic and Fast 4 Tournament
Biola University in La Mirada, CA
Further details TBA
Dee Henry 562.822.8597

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UCLA Takes TOC Section Championship Tue, 20 Feb 2018 18:53:48 +0000 Read more »]]> At USTA Southern California, Assistant Director of Adult Tennis Madeline Segura is the face of Tennis On Campus. After a raucous weekend in San Diego for this year’s Sectionals, Madeline found time to decompress after a wild weekend and provide a glimpse at the TOC experience that led to UCLA and Cal Poly SLO in a battle for Sectional bragging rights…

I could not have asked for a better weekend for the Tennis On Campus Section Championships. A small contingent of SCTA staff and volunteers arrived midday Friday at San Diego’s Balboa Tennis Club to prep the site. The sun was shining and the courts were busy as we started setting up. Dozens of players drilled and rallied throughout the 25-court facility. Members relaxed and watched Tennis Channel in the Club Lounge. Facility staff chatted with passersby near the reservation desk. It was the typical Friday afternoon at Balboa. Despite the activity, there was a casual and routine calmness in the air. I knew, however, that in less than 24 hours, Balboa would feel like a completely different place. The grounds would be filled with more than 250 club tennis players, friends, and family. The place would be buzzing with excitement and fiery competition.

Saturday morning came and so did the hordes of Tennis On Campus enthusiasts. 14 schools and 24 different teams took to their courts. The schools to watch out for were UCLA, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, UC Irvine, and UC San Diego – deemed the event’s “top seeds” based on 2017-2018 tournament results and their 2018 Sectional roster. As adoring fans settled into their viewing areas, off we went into pool play. With three teams in each pool, their finish in pool play decided their respective placement into bracket play Saturday afternoon.

The schools to watch out for were UCLA, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, UC Irvine, and UC San Diego. Those teams were deemed the event’s “top seeds” based on 2017-2018 tournament results and their 2018 Sectional roster.

For most of Saturday, the energy around the grounds was high-spirited and busy. When the teams weren’t battling on court, they found themselves in a haven of activity – posing for crazy team photos, snapping selfies for tournament contests, purchases TOC swag from the NetKnacks booth, and playing intense games of giant Jenga or water pong.

Once pool play ended, teams advanced into brackets: Gold for each pool’s first place finisher. Silver for each pool’s second place finisher. And Ruby for each pool’s third place finisher.

Heading into Gold were UCLA, Cal Poly SLO, UC San Diego, UC Irvine, UC Santa Barbara, USC, University of San Diego, and San Diego State.

Into Silver went UCSD-B, UCI-B, UCLA-B, UCLA-C, Pepperdine, USC-B, UCSB-B

UCR, Claremont Colleges, Cal Poly SLO, Cal State Fullerton, USD-B, LMU, Pepperdine-B headed to Ruby.

The sun began to set as the first matches of bracket play went to court. The atmosphere had an edge to it that was absent during the day. In the Gold Bracket, three bids to the National Championships were at stake and all eight teams wanted them.

After the first round of play, the tournament’s four seeds remained. UCLA would play UCSD and Cal Poly would play UCI. All four teams competed at the 2017 National Championship, which at this point, seemed like a distant memory. It was there that UCI and UCLA finished 2nd and 3rd in the nation respectively. So, as our final four Gold Bracket teams headed into the semi-finals, all four knew that just one more win would ensure their spot back at the National Championship.

It was UCLA and Cal Poly SLO that came out victorious. They were slated to face each other in the Southern California final for the third straight year. In the past two contests, Cal Poly came out on top. However, it was UCLA that was better prepared for battle this year. The Bruins took the Gold Bracket trophy, dropping only one set and finishing 25-16.

UCI and UCSD dueled for the third and final Nationals bid. In the end, the Tritons claimed the W beating UCI 30-8.
In the Silver Draw, UCLA-B took down UCSD-B in the final. That win earned them paid entry to the 2018 Spring Invitational, which will take place in March in Surprise, Az.

Cal Poly-B won the Ruby Bracket, which earned them a case of balls and a gift card for the team.

Though competition ended Sunday afternoon, it did not mark the end of the Tennis On Campus season. There were still several events for students to look forward to as they left the courts at Balboa Tennis Club. USD will host their first section tournament at the end of February. A handful of schools will compete at the Spring Invitational in Surprise, AZ in March. And of course, for UCLA, Cal Poly, UCSD, and SDSU (who earned their own bid to Nationals from their 2nd place finish at the 2017 Spring Invite) are heading into a busy training season before Nationals.

The 2018 Tennis On Campus National Championship will run April 12-14 at the USTA’s National Campus in Orlando, FL. Follow our teams on Twitter (@ustasocal) as they represent Southern California on the grandest scale this spring!

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Fun and Fierce Competition at the TOC 2018 Sectionals Wed, 14 Feb 2018 00:12:05 +0000 Read more »]]> Fun and Fierce Competition at the Tennis on Campus So Cal Sectionals in San Diego

After a successful junior tennis career, Carissa Bernhardt of San Diego decided to focus on academics when she attended San Diego State University.

Now a sophomore, she’s back on the court competing for SDSU in its Tennis on Campus program recently at the TOC Southern California Sectional Championships at Balboa Tennis Club in San Diego.

Bernhardt, a two-time CIF San Diego Section Doubles Champion, is in her second TOC season. She helped her team qualify for USTA TOC Nationals on April 12-14 at the USTA National Campus in Orlando.

“I like TOC because it’s competitive but it doesn’t have the same time requirements as a Division I team,” Berhnardt said. “It’s a good balance.”

For Bernhard, however, Tennis on Campus is a family affair. Her brother, Christopher, will be representing the University of Arizona at the upcoming TOC Nationals. Christopher, architecture major, is the captain of his team.

“You make a lot of friends from all of the other schools,” Bernhardt said. “The tournaments are great because you get to see them all at the same time. I am super excited to go to nationals with my family.”

A total of 13 different schools sent 24 teams to compete in the recent Southern California Sectional Championships. The top 3 finishers qualified for Nationals. UCLA beat Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in the final, and UC San Diego clinched third over UC Irvine. San Diego State University qualified at the 2017 Spring Invitational. Other participating schools included the University of San Diego, USC, Pepperdine, Claremont College, Cal State Fullerton, UC Riverside, Loyola Marymount and UC Santa Barbara.

SDSU qualified for TOC Nationals in April.

Off the court social activities were plentiful with fun photo props, water pong and a giant game of Jenga. While waiting to play teams mingled and enjoyed lunch on a beautiful San Diego weekend.

“The competition was as fierce as always in So Cal,” said TOC Tournament Director Madeline Segura. “There was a different kind of buzz throughout the grounds this year.

Whether the teams were on the court or battling in an intense game of water pong, there was great energy the entire weekend.”

Special thanks go to Balboa Tennis Club for hosting the event. Great appreciation to Balboa Tennis Club Director Colleen Ferrell, whose kindness and hospitality made it a fantastic experience for all. For more event photos, please go to  Good luck to the four teams who will represent So Cal in April.

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USPTA Coach Steve Vorhees Named HEAD Penn Professional of the Year Tue, 13 Feb 2018 06:32:53 +0000 Read more »]]> Tennis is a passion for Steve Vorhees. The Director of Tennis at Canyon Crest Country Club in Riverside, he has shared that enthusiasm with family, friends and the Southern California Tennis Community for over 36 years. Recently he was recognized as the HEAD-Penn Professional of the Year at the 2018 Ad Staff Meeting at Braemar Country Club.

                    Carrie Cimino and Steve Vorhees

“Steve was selected for his expertise, commitment to the game, company and volunteering efforts to promote HEAD racket sports,” said Carrie Cimino, a District Sales Manager for HEAD Penn Racquet Sports. “He has been with us for 30 years and he’s one of the best.”

Vorhees is the President of the USPTA District 5 in Southern California and he has a Professional 1 Certification. He competed at Fullerton College and played professional tennis. He currently has a tennis shop at Canyon Crest and last year sold $85,000 of HEAD Penn products.

                      Steve and Nikki Vorhees

Vorhees shared his love of the game with his daughters, Brooke and Nikki, who both competed for McPHerson College in Kansas. Passion for tennis is also part of Nikki’s world, as she is District Manager for the Southeast Region in Florida.

“I truly believe in the company and have for years,” Vorhees said. “It’s an honor to receive this award.”

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USPTA San Diego Convention Offers Stellar Line Up for March 4 Tue, 13 Feb 2018 05:33:04 +0000 Read more »]]> Registration is open for the USPTA San Diego Division Convention on March 4 at the La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club. Coach Wayne Bryan headlines the program with a presentation and free clinic for kids. The event is from 8am to 3:30pm and the registration fee is $50 for USPTA members (before February 22), and is $60 after that date. The fee is $87 for non-members. Any pro that brings eight or more kids to the clinic will receive a registration fee waiver.

Adding a new twist to the USPTA agenda is free kids clinic from 7 to 9am led by Coach Bryan. Kids will have an opportunity to play and then watch great college doubles matches at the Pacific Coast Doubles Championships on Court 1 at the same club.  This is the second oldest tournament in the United States featuring today’s top college players.  Then, the kids are welcomed to attend Wayne’s presentation from 10:30 AM to noon, as well as watch more doubles.

Cari Buck, the Vice President of the USPTA National Board of Directors and the Director of Marketing for the Southern California Tennis Association, will be the keynote speaker. She is an expert in her field, and is well-versed in the USTA’s Net Generation brand of tennis.

The USPTA Convention platform offers the following:

  • 7 to 9am- Free Clinic
  • 8am- Registration
  • 8:30 to 9:30am – College Coaching and Drills with Marcelo Ferreira
  • 9:30 to 10:30 – Solutions to Teaching Doubles with Stan Oley
  • 10:30 to Noon – Dead Ball Feeds, Drills and Games with Wayne Bryan
  • Noon to 12:30pm – Awards Lunch and Keynote Speaker with Cari Buck
  • 1:30 to 2:30pm- Racquefit – The Tennis-Body Connection with Dr. Greg Rose
  • 2:30 to 3:30pm- Wilson Advisory Staff- Jake Martin, Wilson Rep

For more information, contact Conan Lorenzo at USPTA San Diego Convention Brochure

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San Diego Junior Team Tennis Realizes Huge Growth and Participation in 2017 Wed, 27 Dec 2017 19:38:15 +0000 Read more »]]>  

14 Advanced National Champions Team Top Gun 2013 RPTC with Conan Lorenzo

The fantastic growth of the USTA’s Junior Team Tennis (JTT) program is a source of pride for many in the San Diego area. Looking back in 2017, the numbers indicate that players and parents are catching on to the benefits of this great program. The statistics tell the story and they say something is going very right in San  Diego JTT.

Leading at the JTT helm is UPSTA Coach Conan Lorenzo, the San Diego Area Coordinator for the Southern California Tennis Association. He stepped in 5 years ago, and that has made all of the difference. There are currently over 80 teams competing in with approximately 1,500 players in the various divisions, levels and age groups.

“The reason I asked to jump in to help with USTA San Diego Junior Team Tennis was mainly due to seeing other areas flourish in Southern California while we were in the back seat,” Lorenzo said. “I felt our division could do a better job with participation while also giving our other sections more competition at sectionals for team tennis.”

One remarkable change  change in the JTT offerings is the use of junior ratings at all levels and expanding Red, Orange and Green divisions. There has been 100 percent growth in Orange Ball and Green Dot JTT participation. Also, the numbers of teams have doubled from the previous year.

“I think we are seeing more coaches get on board with the Red, Orange and Green Dot tennis,” Lorenzo said of the JTT boom in San Diego. “Specifically, the Green Dot players are adapting to this level. As a result, this trickles down to coaching. I believe more pros are using Red, Orange and Green Dot balls in training, matches and tournaments. I think this is terrific for San Diego.”

“Just like any startup program with organizing player levels, there is an adjustment period,” Lorenzo says of the learning curve around player ratings. “We had a few bumps and bruises and it took time to figure things out. Now that the computer has a lot of results to help rate the players more accurately, we are seeing our matches much closer in scores which makes each competition even better!”

Congratulations to all of the San Diego teams for winning their respective divisions below. They advance to the So Cal Sectionals in Palm Springs next month.

Division: 10-and-under Orange Ball and Green Dot Teams

  • Barnes 10U Orange Ball Teams
  • La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club 10U Green Dot Team
  • CTA 10U Green Dot Team
  • RPTC 10U Green Dot Team

Division: 12U Teams of 2.9 Intermediate to 3.5 Advanced

  • Westwood
  • La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club
  • Barnes Tennis Center
  • On Point Academy

14U Teams of 2.9 Intermediate to 3.5 Advanced

  • Omni La Costa
  • La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club
  • RPTC

Division: 18U Teams of 2.9 Intermediate to 3.5 Advanced

  • RPTC Teams
  • On Point Academy
  • Coronado


U10 Greet Dot Champs La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club

18 Advanced NexGen and 10 Sat Flying Aces



Omni La Costa 14U Aces



La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club Aces




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Pete Brown First Serve Tournament a Success for San Diego High School Players and Coaches Tue, 26 Dec 2017 18:08:17 +0000 Read more »]]> Hundreds of high school players enjoyed the boys’ and girls’ Pete Brown First Serve Tournaments in San Diego. The two events were held in the spring and fall respectively, and they were designed to jumpstart high school tennis by offering positive competitive experiences to players ranked below No. 150 in the USTA Southern California final tennis rankings in the previous year.

“The First Serve Tournament allows players to get to know each other better before the season starts,” said tournament organizer Coach Don Ackerly of Valhalla High School. “It also gives coaches to a chance to get a feel for potential lineups.”

Patrick Henry High

In the girls’ First Serve Varsity Division, congratulations went to first-place San Dieguito High, and the finalist was Our Lady of Peace Academy. The Junior Varsity Division was won by Rancho Bernardo High, and finalist was Patrick Henry High. Kudos to the boys’ Varsity Division champion La Jolla Country Day, and the Junior Varsity Division was won by Rancho Bernardo High.

Rancho Bernardo High

In total, over two dozen teams competed in the First Serve Tournaments. The fun dual match format hosted with three singles players and three doubles teams listed in order of strength. Each team member plays the corresponding athlete from the other, for example player No. 1 vs. No. 1 and No. 2 vs. No. 2 etc. Each match consists of a six-game proset, with a set tiebreak at 5-5, using no-ad scoring. The winner is the team with the most matches won. In the event of a tie, the team with the most sets won gets the nod. If there is still a tie, the victory goes to the team with the most games won. Players may compete in singles or doubles throughout the day, but only singles or doubles in a given match.

Special thanks to Coach Don Ackerly, Varsity Coach Ron Marquez of Cathedral Catholic High, and Head Junior Varsity Coach Shannon Ackerly of El Camino High for their efforts to make the Pete Brown First Serve Tournaments a huge success in San Diego.

The next Pete Brown First Serve Boys Tournament will be held on February 24, 2018 at Valhalla High School, and possibly Granite Hills or Grossmont High Schools in San Diego. For more information, contact Coach Don Ackerly at

El Camino High competed in the First Serve Tournament

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CIF San Diego Section City Conference Fall Sports Wrap Up Brings Good News for High School Tennis Thu, 21 Dec 2017 03:11:08 +0000 Read more »]]> The California Interscholastic Federation San Diego Section fall wrap-up sports meeting offered updates and changes for next year. Over 100 coaches attended event recently held at Madison High School. It was mandated for all fall sports coaches, including girls’ tennis. The meeting was led by CIF-San Diego Section City Conference President Scott Guisti and supported by various league representatives. 

Cathedral Catholic High Head Tennis Coach Ron Marquez led the group of San Diego area tennis coaches and shared information on all aspects of high school girls’ tennis. He highlighted the process behind tennis Power Rankings and how they affect league and team groupings as well as placement in CIF Division competition.

“Power Rankings are basically a points system that takes into account a lot of things such as wins and losses, the strength of schedule, and matches won in post-season play,” Marques said. “It will change every year based on the previous season’s results.”

Changes in place for girls high school tennis in the fall 2018 include limiting the Power Rankings based on the previous three years of play versus four or five years. Other upcoming changes in the City Conference include:

  • All San Diego City Conference coaches and teams will be using Google Docs for future communication.
  • Match times for team duel competition may change based on new start times for various high schools. For example, a delayed first period from 7:30am to 8:30 or 9am, will change when athletic practices and matches can begin.
  • Additional playoff matches will be offered for 3rd and 4th place in league championships.

“The bottom line  is the City Conference is striving to stay current with changing school systems, academic requirements, and sport and scheduling issues,” Marquez said. “All suggestions are considered by the Athletic Council, and if approved, they are posted in the Blue Book.”

For more information about the San Diego City Conference contact However, all rules are covered in the City Conference Blue Book for all sports including tennis at:




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