Ventura County Tennis – Southern California Tennis News Tennis News, Events, Community Activities, Tournaments Tue, 20 Feb 2018 19:28:27 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Tracy Austin Named Ojai Tournament Honoree Fri, 16 Feb 2018 19:57:02 +0000 Read more »]]> International Tennis Hall of Famer Tracy Austin has been named the Tournament Honoree for the 118th Ojai Tennis Tournament and will be celebrated at a special fundraiser during the event, which runs from April 25-29 headquartered in downtown Ojai’s venerable Libbey Park.

“An Evening With Tracy Austin” will take place Friday, April 27 at the Topa Mountain Winery. The event is a fundraiser for the Ojai Valley Tennis Club and funds raised will be used to expand and support youth tennis programs and tournaments in Ojai, as well as enhance Libbey Park and local school tennis facilities and support funding for The Ojai Tennis Tournament.

Longtime Ojai resident and renowned actor Malcom McDowell will take part in the evening’s event, as will longtime local tennis teaching pro and promoter Wayne Bryan, father of the all-time winningest doubles team Mike and Bob Bryan. The Diane Miller Band will also perform. The cost of the fundraiser is $150. For more information and to purchase tickets online, go to: or click HERE.

“The 118th edition of The Ojai Tennis Tournament is going to be our best tournament yet,” said Carolyn Burke, first-year Ojai Valley Tennis Club President. “We are so excited to welcome Tracy Austin back to The Ojai as our tournament honoree and special guest at our annual fundraising event on April 27 at the Topa Mountain Winery. Our community was tested by the Thomas Fire, but we are resilient and strong! We are happy to be working together to create a memorable tournament that we know both players and fans will enjoy!”

The Rolling Hills resident Austin first burst onto the tennis scene winning The Ojai in 1977 (women’s open) and 1978 (Girls’ 16s), just one year before becoming the youngest player to win the US Open at the age of 16. The former world No. 1 beat Martina Navratilova in the semifinals and Chris Evert in the final at that 1979 US Open, and was later named that year’s Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year.

Austin went on to win 30 singles titles and five doubles titles during her amazing career. Austin holds the distinction as being the youngest player to be inducted into the International Hall of Fame in 1992. She can be seen at tennis’ top events and has been the face of the U.S. Open for more than 20 years for USA Network and Tennis Channel.

In recent years, Ojai Tournament honorees have included former Grand Slam champion Rod Laver, former world No. 1, Wimbledon champion and USC All-American Stan Smith, and legendary former Stanford coach Dick Gould.

It was recently announced that Ojai would for the first time offer equal prize money in the Men’s and Women’s Open divisions. Local benefactor Mike Taggart has increased his donation for the equal prize money, which this year will total $30,200. Each of tennis’ Grand Slam events offer equal prize money, including the BNP Paribas Open which takes place each March in Indian Wells, Calif.

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NTRP Fast4 Sectionals This Month Mon, 08 Jan 2018 00:19:07 +0000 Read more »]]> The 2018 NTRP Fast4 Section Championship takes place January 20-21 at Braemar Country Club in Tarzana.

Men and women competing in 18+ and 50+ divisions (Levels 3.5, 4.0, and 4.5) will play the unique Fast4 format – sets played to 4 games with a five-point tiebreak at 3-3.

Entries for the Section Championships close on January 16.

As an added bonus, players who win their division will receive automatic entry in to the USTA NTRP National Championships (

Registration can be found at by searching tournament ID# 650015518.

With any further questions, please contact Maria Goldberg, Adult Tennis Coordinator at USTA Southern California,

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TGA And Braemar Host Novice Level 7 Orange Ball Tournament Mon, 08 Jan 2018 00:10:25 +0000 Read more »]]> SCTA/TGA Premier Tennis and Braemar Country Club Host Winter Break Novice Level 7 Orange Ball Tournament

On Friday, December 22, the Southern California Tennis Association’s TGA Premier Tennis program, along with Braemar Country Club in Tarzana, hosted 26 girls and boys for the one day tournament.

TGA Kids

The 10 and under players each earned 4 participation stars and vied for Player Progression stars as they move along the player pathway to green dot ball competition. While players waited for their timed match flights, TGA coaches worked them out on a drill court. Nancy Abrams, the SCTA/TGA Premier Tennis program manager spoke to parents prior to the start of play about sportsmanship (for players and parents!), Youth Progression and Junior Team Tennis opportunities in the area. Nancy, along with Susan Pendo, Director of Tennis at Braemar Country Club, look forward to hosting additional Level 7 and Level 6 tournaments, along with Early Development Camps (EDC), in 2018.

Sportsmanship medals were awarded along with Champion and Runner Up trophies:
  • Champion: Kevin Fei (Oak Park)
  • Runner Up: Elliot Lifton (Los Angeles)
  • Sportsmanship:
  • Gregory Akopyan (Burbank)
  • Eliot Lifton (Los Angeles)
  • Zachary Zolla-Imerman (Los Angeles)
For more information about:
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Local TGA Premier Tennis Honored At Annual Summit Mon, 08 Jan 2018 00:04:35 +0000 Read more »]]> During the week of December 11, Nancy Abrams and her TGA Premier Tennis team were honored at the Annual TGA Premier Sports Summit in La Quinta, CA, where they took home multiple awards and a $2500 Grant to further their mission.

Under the direction of Nancy Abrams, the SCTA/TGA has brought tennis to over 40 public and private schools with a franchise of TGA Premier Tennis which launched in 2014 – a new pay-for-play after school playground-based enrichment program in the San Fernando Valley.

This model has grown year to year and has impacted over 2,000 children between the ages of 4 – 13, including cognitively and physically challenged students. USTA PE tennis is also introduced to each TGA partner school with equipment and training. (Total registrations have exceeded 3400 students.)

TGA Award

The SoCal TGA Franchise has also expanded into summer and Holiday camps, furthering impact on the junior population in the San Fernando Valley.

SCTA/TGA Premier Tennis Program Manager Nancy Abrams is proud of the of progress made thus far by her team that includes administrative coordinator Amy Feder, coaching and programming coordinator Kevin Finkelberg, and Will Mauriz, head coach and Adaptive Class lead.

“The SCTA/TGA Premier Tennis team has been very productive throughout the past few years, and I am immensely proud of our collective success,” Abrams said. “We look forward to further growth in our school campuses, community centers and tennis facilities, and moving students along the player progression pathway in 2018.”

The TGA pathway for students transitioning from campuses includes migrating students to USTA programs such as Early Development Camps (EDC), Youth Progression, Junior Team Tennis and Junior Novice Tournaments. In addition, the SCTA/TGA Tennis staff works with parents to encourage family play.

“Our extended action plan includes engaging all of our school partners in USTA Net Generation PE Tennis, seeking additional grants for partial scholarships, and partnering with local Community Tennis Associations (CTA’s) to send qualifying students to National Junior Tennis and Learning (NJTL) summer programs,” explains Abrams. “I truly believe in play equity for all young students, and TGA has been a great vehicle to make this happen in our Southern California communities.”

The TGA pathway for students transitioning from campuses includes migrating students to USTA programs such as Early Development Camps (EDC), Youth Progression, Junior Team Tennis and Junior Novice Tournaments. In addition, the SCTA/TGA Tennis staff works with parents to encourage family play.

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SCTA’s Community Tennis Development Workshop Creates New Traditions in Orange County Fri, 15 Dec 2017 19:24:10 +0000 Read more »]]> The Community Tennis Development Workshop was a smashing success held recently at Bill Barber Community Park in Orange County. The one-day event was sponsored by the Southern California Tennis Association and it offered coaching education, resources and tennis support to approximately 40 participants.

Melanie Bischoff, the Director of Community Tennis, said the Community Tennis Development Workshop has been offered for about a decade in Southern California. The conference was previously located at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden but was moved due to construction at that site. When the SCTA was searching for a new venue, City of Irvine Tennis Director Steve Riggs immediately offered accommodations at City’s offices and Bill Barber Community Park. Also, the seminar was restructured from a two-day to a one-day seminar.

“It was a pleasure for the City of Irvine to host the CTDW,” said Riggs, also incoming member of the SCTA Board of Directors in 2018. “We feel it’s important to give back to the tennis community and one great way to do this is by hosting tennis education seminars. We look forward to helping out again in the future.”

The CTDW morning kicked off with a comprehensive On Court Net Generation Training led by USTA National Coach Karl Davies. The three-hour session offered an in-depth look at the USTA’s Net Generation Red Ball program for beginners focusing on tennis progressions, easy games, and activities with a fun flair.

After lunch, the SCTA staff led a “Welcome to Net Generation” program headlined by USTA SoCal Director of Marketing Cari Buck, and Tennis Service Representatives Karen Ronney and Aisling Bowyer. They informed of Net Generation resources, programs, teaching support and a vast array of coaching guidance for 10-and-Under Tennis. The workshop was designed to assist teaching pros, coaches, teachers, park and recreation leaders, and those associated with Community Tennis Associations.

Additional sessions included a historical look at the development of tennis in the African American communities led by representatives of the American Tennis Association. Other offerings were breakout focus sessions led by local experts.

In addition to the tennis education workshop, lunch and dinner, the CTDW had its first awards presentation. The First Serve of Santa Ana was named the “Community Program of the Year”, and the group received a plaque and recognition for its efforts. They said the fundamental concept of First Serve was to teach tennis to kids, and encourage older players to mentor younger ones. This program develops responsibility, community spirit and leadership skills in youth. First Serve said it credits their successful model to tennis legend Vic Braden, who provided assistance in their earlier years of operation. Other award winners were Beth Kuney for Volunteer of the Year, Mark McCampbell received an award for Coaching Excellence of the Year, and Braemar Country Club was named Community Partner of the Year.

“The workshop is an opportunity for Community Tennis Association (CTA) members, park and recreation professionals, teaching pros, facility personnel and community tennis advocates to get together to learn and to continue to find ways to grow the game,” said Evan Smith, USTA SoCal Manager of NJTL, Diversity & Inclusion. “This is also a great way to network, meet new people and build friendships. It’s one of the highlights of the year in Community Tennis at the USTA.”



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USTA Offers Multicultural Grants and Financial Assistance for Juniors in 2018 Wed, 13 Dec 2017 21:42:44 +0000 Read more »]]> The USTA is offering many financial assistance opportunities to assist players of minority and multicultural backgrounds next year. They will be in the form of Individual Player Grants, Excellence Player Grant and Essay Grants. All applications are available online.  If eligible, please apply.

Multicultural Individual Player Grant for National Competition & Training: These grants provide funding to competitive junior players aspiring to achieve national and/or international rankings. Funding will be based on participation in specific USTA sanctioned tournaments in 2016. Must be training and competing in tournaments year-round and have a history of strong national tournament results. Be sure to read and follow the instructions carefully prior to submitting your application. The application due date is February 2, 2018 and it will be awarded in March 2018. For more information, please click here , and go to this link for Grant Application Instructions.

Okechi Womeodu Scholar Athlete Grant: Honoring the memory, life and achievements of Okechi Womeodu, who otherwise would have had a very promising future, both on and off the court. Rewards players who work to excel as much in the classroom as in sports. Must be training and competing in tournaments year-round, have a history of strong national tournaments results and a minimum GPA of 3.0. The number of grants available are : 1 grant (African-American male). The application due date is January 20, 2018 and it will be awarded in March 2018. For the application,  please click  here.

Althea Gibson Leadership Award: Honoring the memory, life and achievements of Althea Gibson, the first African-American Grand Slam champion, who paved the way for millions who followed. Rewards players who work to excel in leading others both on and off the court. Must be training and competing in tournaments year-round. Number of grants available: 1 grant (African-American female.) The application is due February 9, 2018 and will be awarded in April 2018. Click here to download the application.

Pancho González Scholar Athlete Grant: In honor of Pancho Gonzalez, the Mexican-American icon who won two U.S. Championships men’s singles titles and whose dedication to the sport of tennis brought together fans from all walks of life. We look to reward a player who works to excel in leading others both on and off the court. The recipient must be training and competing in tournaments year-round. Number of grants available: 1 grant (one male or one female.) The application is due February 9, 2018 and will be awarded in April 2018. Please click here to download the application.

Asian-American Scholar Athlete Leadership Grant:  In honor of the achievements of Asian-American tennis pioneers who paved the way for millions who followed, we look to reward a player who works to excel in leading others both on and off the court. The recipient must be training and competing in tournaments year-round. Number of grants available: 1 grant (one male or one female.) The application is due February 9, 2018 and will be awarded in April 2018. Please click  here to download the application

Native American Scholar Athlete Leadership Grant: In honor of the achievements of Native American tennis pioneers who paved the way for millions who followed, we look to reward a player who works to excel in leading others both on and off the court. The recipient must be training and competing in tournaments year-round. Number of grants available: 1 grant (one male or one female.) The application is due February 9, 2018 and will be awarded in April 2018.  Please click here to download the application.

Multicultural Excellence Program Grant: USTA Diversity & Inclusion would like to offer support to programs which are helping our best young players reach the highest level of national junior tennis. We will help offset expenses to any full-time program which offers travel to assist a team or two or more players to compete in the main draw of singles at any USTA sanctioned events. The application due date is through 2018. Please click here to download the Grant Report Form.



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The PTR Offers Coaching Education Opportunities in Southern California Thu, 07 Dec 2017 23:11:17 +0000 Read more »]]> Registration is open for Professional Tennis Registry workshops in Southern California for coaches who wish to progress in coaching education.

On December 16 & 17, a 10 & Under Certification will be held at the Marguerite Tennis Pavilion in Mission Viejo. The clinician is Julien Heine and fee is $202. The workshop covers the following:

  • Creating a coaching environment in which young children can learn to play quickly while having fun
  • Communication and organization skills for coaching 10 & Under players
  • Structure and content of tennis lessons for 10 & Under players: athletic skill, technical and tactical, game and competitive development on the RED, ORANGE and GREEN court
  • Developing quality coaching skills and knowledge for working with 10 & Under players
  • Serve, rally and score as quickly as possible
  • Appropriate team and individual competition for different age groups
  • Information for working positively with parents

An 11 to 17 Certification is offered at El Camino Country Club on January 27 in Oceanside.  The  clinician is Marc Stingley and the fee is $227. The Elements of the Workshop are:

  • Communication and organization skills for coaches working with 11 to 17 year olds both in groups and as individuals
  • Lesson structure and content for different ages and gender: athletic skills to reinforce technical and tactical skills, game and competitive development
  • Developing quality coaching skills and knowledge for working with 11-17 year olds
  • How to develop leadership qualities in young people
  • Conducting successful camps
  • Appropriate competition in singles, doubles and team formats
  • Information for working positively with parents

For information on all of these workshops, go to

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Exciting Championship Day With All Star Tennis League Tue, 07 Nov 2017 03:56:20 +0000 Read more »]]> Juniors Compete in Close Championships Match. Team Bob defeats Team Mike 5-4 in Championship Finals. Coach Wayne Bryan Visits All Star League Finals.

It was fantastic finish to a very competitive season of All Star League Tennis. Good playoff matches were played at both Spanish Hills and Las Posas Country Clubs on the final day of the season followed by awards and pizza at Spanish Hills.

The juniors and parents were treated by a visit from world renowned coach Wayne Bryan as he ran some intense games for the kids, gave some very inspirational tips to both the juniors and parents and gave out and autographed his best selling tennis books to the parents along with signed Bryan Brothers posters to the juniors.

The Championship Match of the All Star League featured the top 8 boys and top 4 girls competing in “All Star” teams from the different teams. The finals was a close 5-4 win for Team Bob with a couple of the matches played very tight and could have gone either way. Hunter Leija and Tanner Honnef led Team Bob with wins in both singles and doubles while Harnoor Singh and Peyton Lynch both picked up singles wins. Lily Korzelius won both her singles and doubles matches for Team Mike.

Championship Finals
Team Bob 5 – Team Mike 4
(Team Bob Listed First)


  • Hunter Leija def Yuvi Narang 8-1
  • Tanner Honnef def Evan Tamayo 8-4
  • Zach Anderson lost to Thiago Canessa 0-8
  • Harnoor Singh def Rohit Ukkan 8-5
  • Alexis Schmidt lost to Lily Korzelius 1-8
  • Peyton Lynch def Kira Branson 8-6


  • Lieja.Honnef def Narang.Canessa 6-2
  • Anderson/Schmidt lost to Tamayo/Korzelius 4-6
  • Singh/Lynch lost to Ukkan/Branson 5-6

Team Mike battled, but came up 1 match short of winning the championship. Juniors each won a bag full of strings/grips/hats sponsored by Babolat


Team Bob won the championship match. Babolat gave the team beautiful new backpacks along with strings and grips.

For the third place playoff match of players put into “All Star” teams at Las Posas, Team Bob defeated Team Mike 6-3

Third Place Match
Team Bob 6 – Team Mike 3
(Team Bob Listed First)

  • Timmy Quest lost to Andy Hess 2-8
  • Will Steinberg lost to Austin Stone 2-8
  • Henry Scheck lost to Joey Root 1-8
  • Max Stone def Drake Nguyen 8-0
  • Kenshin Lin def Andrew Yin 8-6
  • Christian Lavenant def Vishnu Krishnamoorthi 8-4
  • Madaline Nicks def Addie McKinney 8-4
  • Taylor Levy def Gernaldine Cabanan 8-7
  • Camille Stern def Lina McKinney 8-2

Final season medal winners for Individual Standings:


  • 1st (tied) Hunter Leija and Evan Tamayo
  • 2nd (tied) Tanner Honnef and Yuvi Narang


  • 1st Lily Korzelius
  • 2nd Alexis Schmidt

The 2018 Spring Season of the All Star League will start in April. The league will feature high school girls and well as other top junior players.

The All Star Tennis League is supported by Babolat and the Bryan Brothers Foundation and is a league giving ranked as well as up and coming junior players to play in a fun competitive team format of match play while getting on court coaching during matches. Coaches for the league are Mark McCampbell, Jennifer Brown, Val McKinney and Dave McKinney.

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New Balance High School Championships Moving To Weil Academy Thu, 29 Jun 2017 22:06:07 +0000 Read more »]]> There are still a few more days to register for a prestigious event moving from the East Coast to Southern California at the end of July.

The New Balance High School Tennis Championship will feature some of the best interscholastic tennis players in the country and will be held at Weil Academy in Ojai from July 24-27.

And just like the classic Boys’ CIF Interscholastic division played each April at the venerable Ojai Tournament, all entrants must have participated on their respective varsity high school teams during the 2016-17 school year. On July 27th the tournament will honor one boy and one girl as the New Balance High School Tennis Champion. There are no National or Sectional USTA points awarded for this tournament. This is a national-level event and is listed on the USTA national schedule.

For the past three years, the unique boys’ and girls’ tournament took place in Boston. The application deadline has been extended to Wednesday, July 5, and you register via the TennisLink site here:

These elite high school athletes will also get the opportunity to participate in a variety of other activities during the week courtesy of New Balance, including:

  • Welcome reception and opening ceremonies
  • Focus groups on topics including consumer behavior and product preferences girls’ and boys’ footwear and apparel
  • BBQ Pool Party
  • NB Pro Appearance
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USC Beats UCLA, 4-3, To Capture Pac-12 Championship Mon, 01 May 2017 14:51:46 +0000 Read more »]]> OJAI – In a Pac-12 Championship match for the ages at the history-steeped Ojai Tennis Tournament, USC freshman Brandon Holt outlasted UCLA senior Gage Brymer, 7-5, 3-6, 6-4, at No. 1 singles to clinch the conference title for No. 7 USC, 4-3, over No. 5 UCLA before a standing-room-only crowd at Libbey Park.

Photo By Kirby Russell / Ojai Tennis Tournament

It was the fifth UCLA-USC final in the six years the Ojai Tennis Tournament has hosted the men’s Pac-12 Championships. Since The Ojai first hosted the Pac-12 men’s team championships in 2012, USC previously won it in 2012 and 2015, and UCLA in 2013, 2014 and 2016.

 USC’s Rob Bellamy and John Jaede won the first doubles set, 6-2, and the doubles point came down to a 7-6 tiebreaker win for Trojans senior Nick Crystal and Laurens Verboven. The Trojans increased their lead to 3-1 after Logan Smith and Thibault Forget collected singles victories, against Martin Redlicki’s point for the Bruins at No. 2 singles.

 Yet, momentum swung UCLA’s way as Logan Staggs and Austin Rapp polished off wins at Nos. 4 and 6 singles, respectively, in between Brymer winning the last point of the second set to even his match with Holt at a set apiece and the beginning of their third set.

 Suddenly, the Pac-12 title came down to one set between Brymer, who many have dubbed ‘Mr. Ojai’ for his three consecutive CIF Boys singles titles at The Ojai from 2011-13, and Holt, the 2014 CIF Boys doubles champ who was The Ojai’s Men’s Open doubles champ and Men’s Open singles finalist last year as a high schooler.

In the first Pac-12 Women’s (team) Championship at The Ojai, reigning NCAA Division I champion Stanford (No. 6 in NCAA Division I) captured the Pac-12 crown, 4-1, over Bay Area rival California (No. 16) and automatically secured its 36th consecutive berth in to the NCAA Division I Championships (May 18-29).

Stanford won the doubles point on the rackets of its No. 1 doubles team, Emily Arbuthnott and Taylor Davidson, who downed Cal’s top team of Maegan Manasse and Maya Jansen, 6-3. Cal’s Karla Popovic downed Melissa Lord, 6-3, 6-3 in No. 2 singles to give the Bears the first singles point and briefly even the match, but the Cardinal scored the final three singles points through Davidson (6-4, 6-3 over Denise Starr), Arbuthnott (6-1, 7-6 over Jansen) and No. 1 singles player Caroline Doyle, who outlasted Cal’s Manasse, 4-6, 6-3, 6-3, to clinch the Pac-12 title.

The Ojai’s famed Men’s Open singles final will be contested between top seed Philip Bester (Vancouver, BC) and unseeded Henry Craig (Murrieta, Calif.) at 11 a.m. In the semifinals, Bester beat Los Angeles’ Haythem Abid, 6-3, 7-6 (7-4), and Craig dispatched No. 3 seed and former UCLA product Clay Thompson, 6-3, 4-6, 6-2.

The Women’s Open singles final features No. 1 seed Megan McCray, of Oceanside, against No. 4 seed Salma Ewing, of Long Beach. Neither has lost a set this week.

The Ojai concluded play in the CIF Boys singles and doubles divisions. Palisades High junior Jake Sands defeated Woodbridge High sophomore Stefan Dostanic, 4-6, 7-5, 6-0, to win the coveted Ojai title. San Marino High seniors Bryce Pereira and Connor Lee repeated as CIF Boys doubles champions at The Ojai, defeating Harvard-Westlake’s Jed Kronenberg and Adam Sraberg, 6-4, 6-1, in the final.


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Pac-12 Women’s Tournament Takes a New Twist Wed, 26 Apr 2017 23:44:49 +0000 Read more »]]> Once again, the 117th Ojai Valley Tennis Tournament serves up the NCAA’s best in women’s tennis in hosting the Pac-12 Conference to be played next week, but with a new twist. The Pac-12 women now follow suit with their male counterparts and will compete for a conference crown as teams instead of individuals.

UCLA freshman Ena Shibahara

The Pac-12 Women’s Dual Team Championships will be contested in single-elimination bracket fashion and will begin play with three dual team matches on Wednesday and conclude with Saturday’s Pac-12 women’s title match at 3 p.m. at Libbey Park in downtown Ojai. The Pac-12 Women’s Dual Team Championships are co-hosted by the Ojai Valley Athletic Club and the neighboring Weil Academy from Wednesday-Friday, with quarterfinal play on Thursday and the semifinals on Friday.

“Having both played and coached with the individual format, I’m able to really appreciate the tradition it had at The Ojai,” UCLA women’s head coach Stella Sampras-Webster said. “At the same time I know that we were the only conference not having a team tournament so it was inevitable. I will definitely miss the traditional tournament but I can also appreciate the direction we are going and hope that our tournament champion will have an even competitive edge with the other conference champions in the rankings and NCAA seeding.”

Longtime Arizona State University women’s coach Sheila McInerney agreed. “I think the new team format will be very exciting for the players and the fans,” said McInerey. “I have competed and now coached at the Ojai for almost four decades and the tradition of the tournament is second to none.  A team format brings a new dynamic to a great tournament and I am excited to see how it plays out.”

The Pac-12 Women’s Dual Team Championships at The Ojai showcases many of the best collegiate players ahead of May’s NCAA national championships. Reigning NCAA champion Stanford, Cal, UCLA, USC and Arizona State won at least a round at the 2016 NCAA Division I Tennis Championships and will compete for the Pac-12’s first women’s dual team crown at The Ojai.

Stanford beat Oklahoma State, 4-3, in the 2016 NCAA final as the No. 15 seed. Key returners from the Cardinal’s championship team include seniors Taylor Davidson (2015 Pac-12 Championship Doubles winner at The Ojai) and Caroline Doyle and sophomores Melissa Lord and Caroline Lampl. Last year at The Ojai, Lord reached the Pac-12 Women’s Championship doubles final and Lampl advanced to the Pac-12 Women’s Invitational singles final.

Cal also reached last year’s NCAA Final Four after completing the 2016 regular season as the Pac-12 champion and the country’s No. 1-ranked team. The Bears are anchored by 2016 NCAA Division I Women’s Doubles finalists Maegan Manasse (Redondo Beach, Calif.) and Denise Starr.

UCLA’s reshuffled, reloaded roster features freshmen Ena Shibahara (Palos Verdes, Calif.) and Jada Hart (Colton, Calif.). Shibahara won The Ojai’s last two Women’s Open division singles crowns and paired with Hart to win The Ojai’s 2015 Open doubles title and place as doubles runner-up in 2016.

USC’s well-rounded team is spearheaded by the doubles duo of senior Zoe Katz (Los Angeles), the 2015 Pac-12 Women’s Invitational Doubles champ at The Ojai, and junior Gabby Smith.

Arizona women’s coach Vicky Maes also played in the Pac-12 Tournament, falling to Stanford’s Julie Scott in the final 20 years ago in 1997.

“I am excited about this new format,” Maes said. “I have been a proponent for years because I love the team aspect of college tennis. While some individuals will have fewer opportunities to play multiple matches, I think it is appropriate that a team conference championship marks the end of the team conference competition season.”

Past Pac-12 Women’s Individual Singles Champions at The Ojai

1987-Jane Thomas (UCLA)

1988-Lisa Green (Stanford)

1989-Sandra Birch (Stanford)

1990-Debbie Graham (Stanford)

1991-Sandra Birch (Stanford)

1992-Alix Creek (Univ. of Arizona)

1993-Alix Creek (Univ. of Arizona)

1994-Sandra De Silva (Stanford)

1995-Keri Phebus (UCLA)

1996-Julie Scott (Stanford)

1997-Julie Scott (Stanford)

1998-Annica Cooper (UCLA)

1999-Marissa Irvin (Stanford)

2000-Sara Walker (UCLA)

2001-Adria Engel (Arizona State)

2002-Gabriela Lastra (Stanford)

2003-Daria Panova (Oregon)

2004-Raquel Kops-Jones (Cal)

2005-Nicole Leimbach (USC)

2006-Suzi Fodor (Cal)

2007-Lindsey Nelson (USC)

2008-Riza Zalameda (UCLA)

2009-Amanda Fink (USC)

2010-Yasmin Schnack (UCLA)

2011-Kristie Ahn (Stanford)

2012-Nicole Gibbs (Stanford)

2013-Kyle McPhillips (UCLA)

2014-Jennifer Brady (UCLA)

2015-Catherine Harrison (UCLA)

2016- Meagan Manasse (Cal)

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The Ojai: 117 Years of SoCal’s Best & Brightest Wed, 26 Apr 2017 23:39:35 +0000 Read more »]]>  

Nestled in a quaint valley town east of Ventura, Ojai is populated by less than 8000 residents year ‘round. But for one week in May, the town plays host to the oldest tennis tournament west of the Mississippi, attracting thousands of athletes and visitors alike for what is aptly and simply named “The Ojai.”


A career pinnacle of many southern California tennis players and beyond (athletes this year come from British Columbia, Nevada, Hong Kong, and Texas, among others), success at the Ojai is no small feat. The tournament receives more than 100 applications annually from the best players throughout the region, filling just 32 spots in highly competitive Open draws.

This year marks the 117th playing of The Ojai, and despite its lengthy history, the tournament continues to modernize and evolve. Each spring, the community (and all of Ventura County) invest their time and effort to create this amazing event. With more than 400 volunteers and 112 active courts, world class facilities and creative fundraising initiatives, The Ojai sets the stage for competitive junior, adult, and collegiate tournaments.

Perhaps the most anticipated draw of the tournament will be a battle of PAC-12 schools in team competition, the first year for Pac-12 women in team format. With NCAA berths on the line, a strong showing for collegiate players is essential at such a high profile event. Stanford, UCLA, and California are among the top seeds.

“It’s a whole different level of intensity,” according to Jeff Jenkins, one of numerous tournament directors. “This will up the level for them.”

Players gearing up at Ojai Valley Tennis Club.

Not to be outdone, “The Ojai” boasts some of the highest ranking players at the Junior level. CIF competition increase to draws of 64 as young players represent their schools. Locals will keep an eye on Scout Mathews, an Ojai native and 5-star recruit according to Mathews, described by tournament director Craig Fugle as “a prodigy-type player,” is seeded fourth in Girls 16s.

Bystanders should expect great tennis from juniors, college players, and adults alike. But there’s plenty to look forward to off the court as well. New electronic scoreboards will be in place, with a master scoreboard to be added next year. A PAC-12 banquet and scholarship barbeque (featuring honorary guest Rod Laver) will be headlining attractions. And this year, for the first time, all champions will be crowned at Libbey Park on Sunday, when all division finals are played at the same location.  

For the 117th time, the tennis community in Ojai hopes that a future champion will launch a storybook career on their home courts. Household names like Bill Tilden, Arthur Ashe, Billie Jean King, Jimmy Connors, Tracy Austin, and Pete Sampras are among world ranked players who one competed at Ojai.

The question remains, who is the next tennis superstar to pass through the valley? Amazingly, the chances are pretty good that a future US Open champion, Davis Cup captain, or US Olympian is warming up on a back court at Ojai Valley Tennis Club at this very moment…

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Tracy Austin To Help Honor Rod Laver At The Ojai Thu, 06 Apr 2017 17:03:28 +0000 Read more »]]> Tennis Hall of Famer Tracy Austin has been added to a special evening at this year’s Ojai Tennis Tournament as she will help in honoring all-time great Rod Laver during the 117th tournament April 26-30.

Austin is a longtime South Bay resident who is currently a popular Tennis Channel television analyst. She and Laver have a special friendship and Austin calls the Australian legend currently living in Carlsbad “one of my all-time favorite people.”

Austin is a former world No. 1 and two-time US Open champion. She first burst onto the tennis scene back in 1977 by winning the Ojai Women’s Open title before becoming the youngest female to ever win the US Open in 1979.

Laver is the only men’s player to ever win two calendar year Grand Slams (1962 and 1969) and was known during his playing days as “Rocket” Rod Laver.

Laver will be introduced by longtime Ojai resident and renowned actor Malcom McDowell in Ojai on Friday, April 28, during the Ojai Valley Tennis Club’s annual fundraising reception at Topa Mountain Winery. For more information and to purchase tickets online beginning on Friday, go to:

Laver will be the special guest at the Thursday Night BBQ on April 27, that will help kick off the 117th edition of the tournament to take place April 26-30 at venues all over Ventura County and headquartered at venerable Libbey Park in downtown Ojai. The Ojai is one of the oldest and most storied tournaments in the country and hosts the Pac-12 Championships, and includes 26 divisions, 1,200 players and more than 500 volunteers.

The 78-year-old Carlsbad resident Laver was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1981. Besides his 11 singles Grand Slam titles, Laver also won six Grand Slam doubles titles and three in mixed doubles. He was the No. 1 ranked professional from 1964 to 1970, spanning four years before and three years after the start of the Open Era. Laver’s 200 singles titles are the most in tennis history, and he holds the all-time men’s singles records of 22 titles in a single season (1962) and seven consecutive years (1964–70) winning at least 10 titles per season.

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Fanselow Defeats Klahn To Capture USTA Men’s Pro Tennis Championships of Calabasas Title Mon, 27 Mar 2017 19:46:12 +0000 Read more »]]> CALABASAS, Calif., — Whether it was his serving, baseline attack or return game, Sebastian Fanselow of Germany could do little wrong during Sunday’s championship match of the USTA Men’s Pro Tennis Championships of Calabasas.

The 25-year-old Fanselow, a former standout at Pepperdine who now resides in Los Angeles, played almost flawlessly in defeating Bradley Klahn of Poway, Calif., 6-3, 6-2 at the Calabasas Tennis & Swim Center. Fanselow, who needed a little more than an hour to win the match, faced only one break point and won 75 percent of the points when putting his first serve in play.

Fanselow, who joins other notable stars like Michael Chang and Mark Philippoussis to win at Calabasas, secured his third ITF Futures title this year. It’s a trend Fanselow hopes can continue.

“I think 2017 has been a great year so far for me,” said Fanselow, whose other two tournament victories came in Jakarta, Indonesia in February. “By the wins you pick up you gain confidence. My confidence level now is very high.”

Fanselow, ranked No. 386, entered the tournament as the No. 4 seed and did not drop a set in his four matches. He maintained that high level of play on Sunday.

I felt I was able to execute fairly well and make (Klahn) feel uncomfortable for most of the match,” Fanselow said. “I think the biggest thing with him is to get his serve back and put as many balls in the court as possible off the return. I felt I was able to do that and once I got into the rally I had a bit of the upper hand today.”

The loss marked the second time Klahn has finished as the runner-up at Calabasas. The former Stanford star lost in the 2013 final to Sanam Singh of India.

For the 763rd-ranked Klahn, who was granted a wild card into the event, it was a disappointing loss following four impressive wins to reach the final. The 26-year-old left-hander, who was once ranked No. 63 in the world in 2014 and has played in the U.S. Open three times, is starting to find his winning form after missing most of the 2015 and 2016 seasons due to back surgery.

“I wasn’t able to get into my game plan like I had been in my previous four matches,” said Klahn as he spoke to the crowd just before the awards ceremony.

Klahn did bounce back from losing in the singles final to capture the doubles championship later in the afternoon. Playing alongside fellow American Connor Smith, the No. 4 seeds defeated No. 2 seeds Farris Fathi Gosea of Great Britain and Alex Lawson of the United States 6-4, 6-7 (5, 10-5.

Sunday’s Singles Final
Sebastian Fanselow (4), GER def. Bradley Klahn, USA (wc) 6-3, 6-2.

Sunday’s Doubles Final
Bradley Klahn, USA / Connor Smith (4), USA def. Farris Fathi Gosea, GBR / Alex Lawson (2), USA, 6-4, 6-7 (5), 10-5.

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Giron Beats Spencer To Reach Quarterfinals At Calabasas Sat, 25 Mar 2017 03:34:18 +0000 Read more »]]> Giron beats Spencer to reach quarterfinals at USTA Men’s Pro Tennis Championships of Calabasas

One day after being being forced to play three sets in his first-round match, Marcos Giron of nearby Thousand Oaks upped his focus when it counted the most to avoid a similar scenario in his second-round match on Thursday at the USTA Men’s Pro Tennis Championships of Calabasas.

Giron, a former standout at UCLA and the 2014 winner of this event, defeated fellow American Will Spencer of Santa Rosa Beach, Fla., 6-2, 7-5 to punch his ticket into a quarterfinal match Friday against No. 3 seed Tommy Paul of Boca Raton, Fla.

Ripping big forehands to every spot on the court Giron, seeded No. 6, dominated the first set 6-2 and had a few break-point chances to take the opening game of the second set. But the 27-year-old Spencer, connecting on impressive passing shots under pressure, eventually held serve that game and made the second set highly competitive.

Giron, currently ranked No. 444 on the ATP Tour, got the decisive break he needed at 5-5 and then served out the match in the next game.

In other second-round singles matches on Thursday all seeded players in advanced to the quarterfinals except No. 7 Dominik Koepfer of Germany, who fell in three sets to Daniel Nolan of Australia 6-4, 3-6, 6-4.

Top seed Mackenzie McDonald of Piedmont, Calif., only had to play 12 games in his match because his opponent, Julian Lenz of Germany, retired with an injury trailing 6-0, 4-2.

Other players to advance to the quarterfinals were No. 4 seed Sebastian Fanselow of Germany, No. 8 seed Jared Hiltzik of Wilmette, Ill., Karue Sell of Jaragua du Sul, Brazil, and wild-card entrant Bradley Klahn of Poway, Calif.

Paul, who defeated Fred Simonsson of Sweden 7-5, 6-3 in his second-round match, has a ranking of No. 304 on the ATP Tour. Paul, 19, and Giron, 23, are highly accomplished players. Paul won the 2015 Junior Boys title at the French Open, while Giron is a former Easter Bowl champion and 2014 NCAA singles champion.

In first-round double play No. 1 seeds Sergey Betov of Belarus and Luis David Martinez of Venezuela won in straight sets. The No. 2 seeds Farris Fathi Gosea of Great Britain and Alex Lawson of the United States needed three sets to win their match.

Thursday’s Second-Round Singles Scores
wc: wild card
Tommy Paul (3), USA, def. Fred Simonsson, SWE 7-5, 6-3.
Mackenzie McDonald (1), USA, def. Julian Lenz, GER 6-0, 6-2, ret.
Marcos Giron (6), USA, def. Will Spencer, USA 6-2, 7-5.
Jared Hiltzik (8), USA, def. Keegan Smith, USA, 6-4, 6-2.
Sebastian Fanselow (4), GER, def. John Lamble, USA, 6-2, 6-0.
Bradley Klahn (wc), USA, def. Jan Choinski, GER, 6-3, 3-6, 6-3.
Daniel Nolan, AUS, def. Dominik Koepfer (7), GER, 6-4, 3-6, 6-4.
Karue Sell, BRA, def. Samir Iftikhar, PAK 6-1, 6-1

Thursday’s First-Round Doubles Scores
Gonzalez Austin, USA / Nathaniel Lammons, USA def. Mousheg Hovhannisyan, USA / Finn  Tearney, NZL, 7-5, 6-2.
Benjamin Hannestad, DEN / Hunter Reese, USA def. Michael Geerts, BEL / Calvin Hemery (3), FRA 3-6, 6-4, 10-6.
Farris Fathi Gosea, GBR / Alex Lawson (2), USA def. Alexios Halebian, USA / Evan Song, USA 6-2, 6-7 (5), 10-5.
Sergey Betov, BLR / Luis David Martinez (1), VEN def. Jan Choinski, GER / Daniel Nolan, AUS 6-4, 7-5.
Marcos Giron, USA / Julian Lenz, GER def. Sebastian Bader, AUT / Sebastian Fanselow, GER 7-5, 7-6 (9).

Championship weekend begins Friday with a Pro-am drill from 9 to 11 a.m. and later in the day a Community Tennis Appreciation Night. During the Friday evening session local USTA and WTT captains and other San Fernando Valley area tennis leaders will be recognized.

There will also be a VIP/Sponsor-Partner Reception, USTA League Player Challenge and Stadium Court Junior Exhibitions on Friday.

Saturday’s events include the semifinals along with a USTA Junior Team Tennis Kid’s Tennis Carnival from10:30 a.m. to noon.

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An Evening With Rod Laver At The Topa Mountain Winery Thu, 23 Mar 2017 23:23:16 +0000

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Kid’s Tennis Day At Calabasas Tennis Center Thu, 16 Mar 2017 23:09:46 +0000

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Tennis and the Color Green Are a Great Fit for St. Patrick’s Day Thu, 16 Mar 2017 00:10:09 +0000 Read more »]]> What would St. Patrick’s Day be without wearing green, thinking about shamrocks, four leaf clovers and all that goes with the holiday? Better yet, how does playing sports such as tennis, baseball, track, soccer and more fit into the “Wearing O’ the Green” theme?  As it turns out, sports and the color green are a perfect fit on March 17 in honor of the holiday. Please enjoy reading fun St. Patty’s Day facts and watching this Wearing O The Green Tennis & Sports Video: “Tennis Is My Sport.”


Why is it extraordinarily fun to wear green and play tennis? Consider it a possibility that a lively leprechaun might be sending you smiles from nearby court foliage. After all, one never knows where wee folk are hiding. Here are some fun facts regarding the holiday.

  • The color green is now seen in beer, leprechauns, hats and almost everything related to St. Patrick’s Day. It is also the color of Spring and the lush county sides of Ireland. It is believed to be a color that brings good luck to all who wear it.
  • The holiday owes it deepest origins to the coming of spring that will be Monday, March 20, 2017 at exactly 6:29am.
  • Ever get confused about the difference between four-leaf clovers and three-leaf shamrocks? The four-leaf clover can be ever present in our lawns and gardens. They represent the Celts, who were the solar-worshiping invaders of Ireland.
  • The Shamrock means “Little Clover” in Gaelic and is a symbol of the Christianity’s Holy Trinity (Father, Son and Holy Spirit), a story attributed to the Irish missionary St. Patrick.
  • Taylor Fritz. (SCTA Staff)

    The Pot of Gold is treasured by the “Wee Folk” and it’s a magical pot that represents the “Cauldron of Abundance” uniting the four elements: fire, earth, water and air. It also forms a metaphorical womb to represent the vessel of life.

  • The element of Irish “gold” comes through generations of lore and mystical story telling. It represents wealth, wisdom and knowledge.
  • Fanciful leprechauns are magical beings that are mostly male in the traditional form. They can be
    feisty, funny and often playful, and if the mood strikes, helpful. These red-bearded fairy folk are thought to be eternal as they perch on toadstools and selectively befriend human kind. 
  • Finally, legends say “St. Patrick’s Day” was named in honor of an Englishman born in Britain circa (389-461). He was kidnapped and sold into Irish servitude to be a shepherd. After escaping and returning to England, h e studied to become a priest and changed his name to “Patricus.” He later returned to Ireland to become a Christian missionary with the goal of dispelling pagan myths. St Patrick died on March, 17, 461. Today he is known as the Patron Saint of Ireland.

This festive holiday is now celebrated around the world. Whether you adopt some or all of its traditions, consider picking up a racket and playing tennis with friends. Don’t forget to wear something green!

Frances Tiafoe on the run (SCTA Staff)


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Calabasas Pro Tennis Returns for 2017 Wed, 15 Mar 2017 19:06:52 +0000

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Rod Laver Named 2017 Ojai Tournament Honoree Wed, 08 Mar 2017 17:44:55 +0000 Read more »]]> OJAI, Calif. (Feb. 6, 2017) – Considered tennis royalty and one of the greatest to ever play the game, tennis great Rod Laver has been named the 2017 Ojai Tennis Tournament Honoree.

The only men’s player to ever win two calendar year Grand Slams (1962 and 1969) the Australian Laver was known during his playing days as “Rocket” Rod Laver.

The announcement was made by Ojai Tennis Board Member and organizer Mark Weil and longtime Ojai resident and renowned actor Malcom McDowell in Ojai on Saturday during the Ojai Valley Tennis Club’s annual fundraising reception. “Bringing Rod Laver to the Ojai Tournament is like bringing Beethoven to the music festival! My God, it’s unbelievable!”

Laver will be the special guest at the Thursday Night BBQ on April 27, that will help kick off the 117th edition of the tournament to take place April 26-30 at venues all over Ventura County and headquartered at venerable Libbey Park in downtown Ojai. The Ojai is one of the oldest and most storied tournaments in the country and hosts the Pac-12 Championships, and includes 26 divisions, 1,200 players and more than 500 volunteers.

In addition to the Thursday night BBQ in Libbey Park, Laver will be honored at a special “Evening With Rod Laver” on Friday night. A fundraising event to benefit the Ojai Tennis Tournament, the event will take place at the Topa Mountain Winery. For more information and to purchase tickets online, go to:

“To have a player the stature of Rod Laver chosen as our Tournament Honoree is absolutely a dream come true,” said Weil, who is the founder and director of the popular Weil Tennis Academy in Ojai. “Tennis to the people of Ojai is the air we breathe, and Rod Laver is the sweetest tennis aroma of all time! A true living legend of the game, we are so excited to honor him this year at The 117th Ojai! We want ALL of the Southern California tennis community to come to our “Evening with Rod Laver” this April and honor a living tennis treasure – the ‘Rocket’ Rod Laver!”

The 78-year-old Carlsbad resident Laver was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1981. Besides his 11 singles Grand Slam titles, Laver also won six Grand Slam doubles titles and three in mixed doubles. He was the No. 1 ranked professional from 1964 to 1970, spanning four years before and three years after the start of the Open Era. Laver’s 200 singles titles are the most in tennis history, and he holds the all-time men’s singles records of 22 titles in a single season (1962) and seven consecutive years (1964–70) winning at least 10 titles per season.

“I have heard so many great things about The Ojai Tournament from my good friend Stan Smith,” said Laver, who recently presented the trophies to Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal after the singles final played at Rod Laver Arena at the Australian Open. “I’m really excited to be named this year’s Tournament Honoree.”

In recent years, Ojai Tournament honorees have included former world No. 1, Wimbledon champion and USC All-American Stan Smith, Dick Gould and Tracy Austin.

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So Cal Junior Tennis Adopts New Seeding Methods for 2017 Fri, 27 Jan 2017 19:43:54 +0000 Read more »]]> The times they are a changin’ in junior tennis seeding for Southern California. With advent of growing resources, the SCTA will be using many factors to determine seeding in Junior Open Tournaments Levels 1 to 4 starting January 2017. This means tournament directors will consider USTA sectional and national rankings, as well as the Universal Tennis Rating (UTR) system. Also, tournaments are offered through the USTA  as well as UTR channels.

To find upcoming USTA junior tournaments in So Cal go to Http://   The next UTR tournament in San Diego is Feb 18 to 20 at Del Norte High. Sign up at

Trevor Kronemann, the Director of Junior Competition for the SCTA, stated several reasons for this shift.  In 2016,  he sent this information to USTA players in So Cal:

  • The seeding committee reserves the right to consider other factors for players returning from injury, out of section players, players playing out of age division and other unforeseen situations that the seeding committee deems applicable.
  • Seeding the system used to separate the top players in a draw so that they do not meet in the early rounds of a tournament. The top seed is the player that the tournament committee (Tournament Director, Tournament Referee, Director of Junior Tennis, Junior Competition Chair) deems the strongest player in the event. It is not a standing or ranking.

Many may wonder, what is the UTR system? Where does it get information? According to the UTR website, this is the story:

“Universal Tennis Rating (UTR) has now processed more than 4 million tennis match results—less than a year after attaining the 3 million match mark last April. UTR is rapidly becoming a “mainstream” tool throughout the tennis world. The millions of results flow in from more than 200 nations. They reflect the play of over 300,000 athletes and 2,000 college teams. The pace at which results are entering the system indicate UTR’s rapid growth: the database took a little over a year to grow from 2 million to 3 million matches, but the fourth million arrived in less than nine months.

UTR attracts tennis data from all over the world as a consequence of the simplicity, accuracy, pragmatic value, and universality of its rating scale. It gathers results from the ATP, WTA, ITF, ITA (U.S. college tennis), USTA (open, 5.0, and junior levels), Tennis Canada, Great Britain’s Lawn Tennis Association (LTA), Tennis Australia, and Tennis Europe, plus select public and private U.S. high school results.

UTR translates all this data into a common worldwide metric that rates athletes’ level of play on a 16-point scale (from beginners to world-class professionals). UTR precisely and reliably determines individual players’ ratings based on actual match results, without regard for age, gender. or where the matches are played. The score of the match and the rating of the opponent are the only factors that enter the algorithmic calculations.

In the past year, UTR has also added new features, like enabling players to claim their profiles and receive weekly results notifications. College teams, too, can claim their profiles and compare matchups with opponents. In the near future, Universal Tennis will introduce doubles ratings as well.”

For more information on UTR go to  For more information on SCTA seeding method changes, please contact Trevor Kronemann via email at



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USPTA Offers New Membership for High School Coaches Thu, 26 Jan 2017 19:20:09 +0000 Read more »]]> The USPTA now offers a new category of membership for high school coaches. School athletic directors are encouraged to sign up their schools, and all tennis coaches at a school will have access to the benefits. This is an annual membership (Aug.-July.) for $99 per year.  As a member they get full access to – a website with hundreds of hours of drills, tips, instructional videos and more.

There is an interactive online practice planner containing hundreds of drills to help you build custom lesson plans for your team to help you stay organized during the busy school year on Tennis Resources.  The fee is $99 per school, not per coach. Benefits include:


Benefits include:

  • Full access to – a website with hundreds of hours of drills, tips, instructional videos and more.
  • Interactive online practice planner containing hundreds of drills to help you build custom lesson plans for your team to help you stay organized during the busy school year. (View a samplehere)
  • School subscription to Tennis magazine
  • School subscription to Tennis Industry magazine
  • USPTA member pricing for USPTA national and division events

For more information, go to 

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