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June Florida Tennis Notes

June 3, 2009 07:00 AM

North Florida Notes

ACES -- John Isner beat Donald Young 7-5, 6-4 in the all-American final at the Tallahassee Challenger...Rodney Marshall, the 32-year-old former fitness trainer at Titus Sports Academy in Tallahassee, has become the USTA’s West Coast strength and conditioning specialist, relocating to the Carson, Calif., training center.

Amelia Director Kelly Gunterman

AMELIA ISLAND -- Kelly Gunterman was named director of tennis for the Amelia Island Plantation. His Gunterman Tennis Schools have been a long-time fixture at the resort. "We've served Floridians and tourists at the resort since 2002, and we're thrilled to align in a bigger way with this award-winning resort and the people who run it," the 25-year teaching pro said. He is also a recent addition to the Northeast Florida Tennis Advisory Council in Jacksonville.

JACKSONVILLE -- May was a big month for the MaliVai Washington Kids Foundation, with the Verizon Wireless Kids for Kids Carnival on the 16th, and the year-end Sponsor BBQ on the 29th. The kids carnival included inflatables and games, arts and crafts and tennis clinics, while the Sponsor BBQ honored the student sponsors, and also included tennis and games for sponsors and their students. For info on volunteering or getting involved call (904) 359-5437...

The MaliVai Washington Kids Foundation's annual signature weekend-long event will now be called The Kossak Companies Golf & Tennis Gala after the boutique financial service firm signed on as a title sponsor. This year's event will on Sept. 14-15 featuring a Tennis Pro-Am, Golf Pro-Am, gala dinner, live & silent auctions and awards ceremony. "It is not too hard to want to extend a hand to someone like Mal," said The Kossak Companies President David A. Kossak. "If you visit the facilities, and meet the dedicated staff of Mal's center, and your heart does not skip a beat, then I contend you are dead. Mal has created an oasis in a violent desert. From this point forward, I want to only align myself, my company, with people who walk the walk, who give for the right reasons, and are passionate about their beliefs. They must have integrity, honesty and a staff that has the utmost commitment to their core beliefs. I have never been involved with an individual or organization that exemplifies this as much as Mal and his staff have. I am humbled and honored to be a part of this event."…

The Mandarin Middle School Community Tennis program was honored as a "Top 50 Tennis Welcome Center" for delivering a variety of tennis programs to new and current players of all ages in efforts to increase participation in the game, awarded by the Tennis Industry Association.

LAKE COUNTY -- USTA Florida Local League Coordinators and County Representatives Deb and Mark Anderson have been instrumental in growing tennis since relocating to the area from Colorado approximately three years ago. Their credits include helping establish the South Lake Tennis Association, QuickStart programs, and doubling league participation in the area. "We see what we do now will have an impact on somebody 30 to 40 years from now," Deb told the Orlando Sentinel. "Tennis is something you can play for a lifetime. You can play it when you are 5 or 95...Participation has doubled since the inception of USTA league play for seniors in 2007. Instead of one level, there are now two, and even a new division, super seniors, was added last season."

The Portofino Island marathon players
ORLANDO -- Apopka High's Jackson Tresnan and Trinity Prep's Maci Epstein topped the All-Central Florida tennis team for 2009, named by the Orlando Sentinel.

PALM COAST -- Local resident Tom Gullikson is returning to the USTA coaching fold as a national coach, relocating to the national training center in Carson, Calif. He will work with boys and girls in the USTA Player Development program.

PORTOFINO ISLAND -- Portofino Island Director of Tennis Michael Edge taught tennis lessons for 24 straight hours on May 15-16 in a tennis marathon, raising $2,300 for the American Cancer Society's "Making Strides for Breast Cancer." Events included private and group lessons and a Cardio Clinic, with more than 80 players from Pensacola, Gulf Breeze and Pensacola Beach participating.

TALLAHASSEE -- Forest Meadows will host the The 1st Annual Christmas Connection Round Robin tennis tournament on June 13, with proceeds to benefit Christmas Connection, which services poor and vulnerable residents in the Tallahassee area. Men's, women’s and mixed doubles will be featured, and more information is available by contacting Candace Bunker at ingoditrust@comcast.net.

South Florida Notes

ACES -- Shenay Perry of Coral Springs defeated Palm Beach Gardens' Carly Gullickson in the USTA Movie Gallery Pro Classic challenger final at in Dothan, Ala. "It gives me a lot of motivation to know that I can still go out and play at a high level of tennis," said Perry, who had knee surgery in 2008...Kam Kutcha, director of tennis at the Wycliffe Golf & Country Club in Wellington, ascended to the national No. 1 ranking in the United States Professional Teaching Association (USPTA) men's 35-and-over division earlier this year...Pompano Beach's 14-year-old Dhanielly Quevedo finished runner-up at the USTA National Girl's 16s, losing to Indianapolis' Brooke Austin in the final...Tampa's Connor Smith defeated Bjorn Fratangelo of Pittsburgh/Naples in the boy's main draw final at the USTA National Open Boys and Girls 18s Tournament, held at the Naples Tennis Club. Smith and Spencer Wolf of Coral Springs won the boys doubles final. Danielle Collins of St. Petersburg beat Maria Belaya of Melbourne in the girls main draw final.

Staff of the MaliVai Washington Kids Foundation on court with kids
BOCA RATON -- The Grassroots Junior Team Tennis League spring end-of-season Jamboree was hosted in May by Woodfield Country Club, where 90 juniors participated in various tennis activities. The opportunity was also used to collect used tennis equipment in good condition for distribution to various children's tennis program charities…

Organizer Rami Myron's Florida Tennis Cup has partnered with USTA Florida. The Florida Tennis Cup is a series of fun, fast-paced, recreational one-day tennis tournaments for adult players. More information on the Florida Tennis Cup is available at www.floridatenniscup.com.

BRADENTON -- Bollettieri/IMG resident Kei Nishikori, who has yet to crack the Top 50 on the ATP Rankings, is nevertheless such a hit in his native Japan, he is earning in the low eight-figures a year by virtue of deals with the likes of Sony, adidas and Gatorade, according to ESPN the Magazine. "I don't really understand it," said Nishikori, who has trained in the U.S. since 2004, of all the attention. Unfortuntely Nishikori missed the French Open and Wimbledon with an elbow injury.

BROWARD COUNTY – Broward County Parks & Recreation has awarded a contract to Mackey Sports Enterprises, Inc., to operate the tennis facility at C.B. Smith Park in Pembroke Pines. Robert Mackey was formerly employed by Broward County, will pay a percentage of revenue to the parks and recreation, and can operate other sports programs in the park, according to Florida Tennis magazine.

CAPE CORAL -- A new USTA tennis center is being proposed as a second phase of a $35 million swimming complex and wellness center, part of a $250 million hotel/convention facility that The National Swim Center Corporation, supported by USA Swimming, is looked to construct in the area, according to the Ft. Myers News Press. The 183-acre site proposed for the facility is at the northwest corner of Kismet Parkway and the Del Prado Boulevard extension.

CLEARWATER -- Approximately 600 cars crammed the parking lot for the Pinellas USTA Tennis Block Party, which featured among activities 36 adults new or returning to tennis in a round robin and receiving NTRP ratings. "I almost ran out of prizes, so I know the number is good," said organizer Judy Foster, executive director of the Suncoast Tennis Foundation. "We had over 14 pros on court...seven manufacturer representatives in Babolat, Dunlop, Prince, Weed, Wilson, Volkl and Yonex, and the reps/pros running those courts told me they barely had five minutes rest the whole day." Among other activities the event featured QuickStart Tennis and a wheelchair tennis exhibition.

DUNEDIN -- Roger Gentilhomme turned 100 in May, attributing his two hours of tennis a day to his longevity. “I feel great,” said Gentilhomme, who has won more than 50 medals at the Florida Senior Games in various sports, speaking to the St. Petersburg Times. “I don't have any complaints.” In 2007 he was named the Florida Senior Athlete of the Year and was presented his medal by Gov. Charlie Crist. In September he will travel to the Netherlands for the first International Senior Games. "They're all excited about having a 100-year-old there,” Gentilhomme said. He was 65 when he first picked up a racquet, and he also bowls, plays shuffleboard, dances and takes classes at St. Petersburg College.

FT. MYERS -- Florida Gulf Coast University women's tennis coach Jennifer Gabou is hosting a series of competitive junior events in June for boys and girls 16 and under, the FGCU Junior Tennis Classic. For more info e-mail jgabou@fgcu.edu.

GULF HARBOUR -- The Gulf Harbour/Ft. Myers USTA Florida Men's Super Senior 7.0 team is headed to Arizona in the spring of 2010 for the USTA Super Senior National Championships. The combo doubles team won the Florida sectional in Daytona Beach, upsetting defending champion Jacksonville in the semis and defeating St. Pete/Clearwater in the final.

MARATHON -- The Middle Keys city completed its first QuickStart Tennis program in the spring, and in May qualified two players to the regional Jr. Olympic Skills Competition in May in Miami. Held at public park tennis courts, brothers Angel and Emilio Alvear took home the "gold" in their respective age groups, with event coaching supplied by Tim Wonderlin, Pam Marco and Ed Fisher.

MIAMI – Tennis legend Gardner Mulloy recently married Lady Jacqueline Mayer of London. The 95-year-old also recently completed his memoir, As It Was, which will be published later this year, according to Florida Tennis magazine.

USTA Florida Executive Director Doug Booth shows off the Play Tennis specialty license, available now at your local DMV
SARASOTA -- Former No. 1 Maria Sharapova made her 2009 singles debut at Warsaw in May after being sidelined most of the first five months of 2009 with a shoulder injury. The Russian has been rehabbing hard, but is also filling her time blogging via her website. A recent entry detailed a trip from her home base in Bradenton to Sarasota, and the attractions of the city, including the restaurant Mozaic. "I never thought I would say this about Sarasota, but it is really coming around, with great little boutique restaurants and art galleries," Sharapova wrote. "I don't know how many of you live in Sarasota, but you should definitely visit Mosaic [sic]...it's Moroccan/French with great cous cous! Highly recommend it!" Maria gives it five stars. Look for the Russian gastronome visiting a Florida restaurant near you.

ST. PETERSBURG -- Family, friends and colleagues came together to remember tennis official Terry Lou Logan in May in a memorial service. A renowned trainer of officials, she is survived by her husband Thomas, her daughter Sandra, her sons James and William and her four grandchildren, Chase, Max, Kennedy and Nate. "Terry was a leader in the tennis world unmatched," wrote local journalist H. Patrick Wheeler. "She was the behind the scenes organizer of an untold numbers of tennis players, many who went onto to bigger and better things, unbeknownst that those who worked in officiating tennis tournaments had helped those players with the correct application of tennis standards."…

The International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum has announced that St. Pete resident Fern Lee "Peachy" Kellmeyer is the 2009 recipient of the Golden Achievement Award, given jointly by the International Tennis Hall of Fame and the International Tennis Federation. The award was presented at the ITF Champions Dinner at the Pavillon d'Armenonville in Paris, France in conjunction with this year's French Open. As a player, coach and WTA tour executive, Kellmeyer has been a pioneer for women's rights in tennis, taking over as executive director of women's circuit in the mid-1970s. She was also the physical education director at Marymount College in Boca Raton, where she spearheaded a lawsuit that ultimately led to the dismantling of the rule that prohibited athletic scholarships for female athletes, and paved the way for the landmark Title IX legislation.

-- The Senior Tennis of Volusia CTA has expanded its offering to include QuickStart, with 14 youngsters ages 6-11 attended the first 6-week session. The program utilizes four outdoor courts and tennis inside a gymnasium to bring the classes indoor during inclement weather. Barbara Wong, Senior Tennis of Volusia president, directs the program and is now a contract instructor with Brevard County. She says the position allows her to take QuickStart tennis to any Brevard County facility, and that she will target elementary schools among other programs. For more info contact stov@cfl.rr.com.

WESLEY CHAPEL -- A plan to build a $7.9 million tennis stadium next to the Saddlebrook Resort in Pasco County was shelved after Saddlebrook Resort owner Tom Dempsey said his company opted out when it could not reach an agreement with the county on a contract. "It's that simple," he said. Dempsey would not elaborate on the plan that had been in the works since 2002, but said it involved liability issues insisted on by the county.

Got news? Send to vach @ florida.usta.com






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