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Florida Tennis Briefs(4): French Jrs., Family Tennis Festival, 10-U Coaches Workshop, More

May 30, 2012 01:55 PM
Mayor Receives $2,000 from USTA Florida at Clearwater Family Tennis Festival

From left: USTA Florida Director of Community Tennis Linda Curtis presents the grant check to Clearwater Mayor George Cretekos 
USTA Florida staff member Liz Coates works with children on the 10 and Under Tennis court
Players enjoy a break from tennis at the cookie-making station
While the teenagers and adults battled it out on the hardcourts of the Henry L. McMullen Tennis Complex on day one of the US Open Playoffs-Florida tournament, children 10 and under and their parents enjoyed a Family Tennis Festival, sponsored by USTA Florida and the Suncoast Tennis Foundation.

The May 26, 2012 event featured various levels of play on different courts, court activities and games, the 10 and Under Tennis format, a short-court game for senior players, Cardio Tennis, face painting, cookie-making, snacks and drinks, and a DJ spinning kid-friendly hits.

"It's great to see all these kids out here getting exercise," said Suncoast Tennis Foundation Executive Director Judy Foster, one of a number of Suncoast Tennis Foundation members who organized and volunteered at the event. "And we had a good number of adults participating in Cardio Tennis and other events."

Prior to the start of the Family Tennis Festival, USTA Florida Director of Community Tennis Linda Curtis presented Clearwater Mayor George Cretekos with a $2,000 "Share the Love" grant check for 10 and Under Tennis equipment for the McMullen Tennis Complex and the City of Clearwater Beach.

"This will allow more children to participate in this great sport, and keep children active," Cretekos said, before participating on the Cardio Tennis court as a ball feeder.

Julianna Maged of Palm Harbor and Lauren Bambach of Lithia were drawing winners of kids' equipment packs, while six-year-old Keely Diehl of Clearwater was the winner of four tickets to the 2012 US Open in Flushing Meadows, N.Y. The tickets were claimed by her grandfather, Ronald Massey, who signed her up for a 10 and Under Tennis membership.

10 and Under Tennis features the right-sized equipment for kids age 10 and under, utilizing smaller, lighter racquets and softer, lower-bouncing balls, and kid-sized nets and court sizes.

For additional information on the Clearwater Family Tennis Festival, contact Laura Bowen at bowen@florida.usta.com, or Rick Vach at vach@florida.usta.com.

47 New Coaches at 10-Under Tennis Workshops in Port Orange

It didn't take long to begin utilizing the new 36-foot and 60-foot 10 and Under Tennis courts at the newly-refurbished Airport Road Park in Port Orange, Fla. On May 5th and 20th, 2012, 20 coaches took part in an all-day training with USTA national trainer Dave Brown, a Port Orange resident.

The workshop was one of two hosted by USTA Florida?s Daytona Beach-area Tennis Program Coordinator Molly Zimmer. The Recreational Coaches Workshop (RCW) not only teaches coaches how to introduce tennis to children under 10 years old, but how to coach USTA Jr. Team Tennis, as well as middle school and high school tennis teams.

port_orange-Tennis_Xpress_Finale_2012-Coaches_009On May 20th Zimmer and Brown combined once more at Airport Road Park and presented a TAUT (10 and Under Tennis) Workshop in a half-day format. The majority of attendees were from the local YMCA, which will be introducing tennis this summer in their summer camp programs.

"Not only did attendees learn how to coach recreational players, but they also learned how to take advantage of USTA Florida's 'Share the Love' grants, which help coaches develop programs for new players by supplying training and specialized equipment such as smaller racquets, lower nets, and bigger balls for young kids," Brown said.

10 and Under Tennis is designed for children featuring smaller court sizes, racquet sizes, foam and decompressed balls, a simple scoring system, and net heights adjusted to ease kids into the sport. Similar mini-tennis formats have long been popular in Europe, where current stars such as Roger Federer and Kim Clijsters first learned the game with age-adjusted racquets, balls and court sizes. To see a video of 10 and Under Tennis in action go to: http://10andundertennis.usta.com.

For more information on the workshops contact Dave Brown at DBrown@ICIHomes.com.

Florida's Melichar Wins Mixed at US Open Playoffs-Southwest

Brian Battistone and Nicole Melichar 
Nicole Melichar of Stuart, Fla., advanced to the US Open Playoffs national tournament in mixed doubles by capturing the title at the USTA Southwest Section's US Open Playoffs tournament in May.

Melichar, a Floridian who trains at the Pavel-Blackwood Tennis Academy in Gilbert, Ariz., teamed with ATP doubles specialist Brian Battistone, defeating Zach Northey (Lincoln, Neb.) and Haily Morgan (Anthem, Ariz.) 6-3, 6-2 in the final.

Battistone is noted for using a double-handled tennis racquet.

It was the second consecutive year that Melichar advanced to the US Open Playoffs national tournament from the USTA Southwest Section event.

The 18-year-old Melichar also reached the women's singles final before falling to fellow 18-year-old Stephanie Vlad 6-2, 6-2.

5 Florida Juniors in Main Draw at French Open Juniors

roland-garrosFour Florida girls in the main draw, and one Florida player in the boys' main draw will compete in the French Open junior championships, with qualifying starting May 31, and the main draw June 3, 2012, in Paris.

Florida players in the girls' main draw are Chalena Scholl of Pompano Beach, Alexandra Kiick of Plantation, Sachia Vickery of Miramar, and Jennifer Brady of Boca Raton.

They are joined by fellow Americans Taylor Townsend, the world No. 1 junior from Stockbridge, Ga.; Kyle McPhillips, Willoughby, Ohio; Krista Hardebeck, Santa Ana, Calif.; and Christina Makarova, San Diego.

Spencer Papa of Boca Raton is the lone Florida player in the boys' main draw. He is joined by fellow Americans Mitchell Krueger, Aledo, Texas; Mackenzie McDonald, Piedmont, Calif.; Noah Rubin, Rockville Centre, N.Y.; and Alexios Halebian, Glendale, Calif.

Stefan Kozlov of Pembroke Pines, Fla., is in the boys' qualifying draw, joined by American Thai Kwiatkowski of Charlotte, N.C.

Last year Bjorn Fratangelo of Naples, Fla., captured the French Open boys' singles title. Florida's Jennifer Capriati in 1989 was the last American girl to capture the French Open girl's championship.






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