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Sr Cup Wrapup

2002 Senior Cup Recap
by Marilyn Sherman

We may have to start selling tickets to Senior Cup! The tennis played in Columbus, GA this weekend was world class with 300 of the top Southern players competing for their state in team competition in Men’s and Women’s 35-75 age divisions.

 

The Southern Senior Cup Team Championships is a phenomenal event for so many reasons. Teams include several former tour players and internationally and nationally top ranked senior players competing in a unique format that awards points for victories in several categories. Congratulations to Georgia for capturing the inaugural Mildred Southern Cup for the combined Men’s and Women’s Overall Championships. Georgia also captured the Gil Stacy Memorial Cup for the most individual wins and the Men’s Overall Championships! Kudos to South Carolina for winning the Women’s Overall Championships that went down to the wire with the last two matches played!

 

In addition to the superb tennis, it is the team camaraderie that the players experience that makes many say this is their favorite tennis weekend of the year. I love to watch the 35s cheering on the 75s and visa versa! Many friendships are rekindled during these four days as well as great rivalries!

The atmosphere is incomparable to any other tennis event I have experienced and I always come away with a tremendous warm and fuzzy feeling of how GREAT our sport is and those who compete in it!

 

Columbus has hosted this event for nine straight years and will continue to host it through at least 2004! It was especially exciting to be in Columbus as they just won the USTA’s Organization of the Year Award. It is easy to see why! This association (CORTA) has written the book on how to create a dynamic tennis presence in a community. As a result, they have one of the most beautiful (and largest with 30 clay courts) tennis facilities in the country. It also takes organization and volunteer spirit to keep improving with each year the tennis opportunities locally and with the many events they host each year. Deepest and warmest thanks to Ken Smith for superbly chairing the local effort! I always come back from Columbus feeling like I’ve just left my family for a while! Kudos also to Nita Perry, Mark Ruseski, Roger & Judy Pearce, Kim Jinks, Fred & Georgia Wise, Gene and Brenda Oswalt, Marie Arnold, Carol Campos, Chris Cartagena Bob Flournoy, Dan Hackaday, Jack Langford, Carol Northrup, Sloan Perry, Shannon Quick, Ruby Rumley, Gary & Gloria Ruzeski, Sally Sinclair, George Panos, and Janie Worthington for providing fantastic facilities, amenities and Southern hospitality!

 

Everyone enjoyed the welcome party at the National Civil War Naval Museum where between wonderful nibbles and beverages, players wandered though its fascinating displays! The lunches from Blimpie were fantastic and the water donated by Callaway Blue kept the players hydrated in VERY hot conditions. Sincere thanks to Steve Bloebaum, Director of Sales and Marketing for Callaway Blue (www.callawayblue.com) who personally delivered more water to ensure we had enough for Sunday! We would also like to thank Georgia Crown Distributors and Mr B’s Beer and Wine for donating beverages for the event! All enjoyed the BBQ on Saturday night: especially the wonderful music played by the Swan Duo Suzanne and Kingsley! And Terri won the "game"! Speaking of Terri, we said our goodbyes for now by presenting her with a poster with the past five year’s Sr Cup logos signed by her Senior Cuppers! Everyone expressed their joy for her opportunity to become a band director at Dacula Middle School and sadness that we won’t see her smile and hear her laughter at Senior Cup. The players and captains have so appreciated her hard work and incredible passion! Our loss is surely hundreds of children’s gain!

 

We also appreciate Tournament Chairman Sharon Gault’s efforts throughout the year and Tournament Referee Carol Fowles who has been with us for fourteen of our sixteen years! They are both so responsible for this event’s improvement each year.

 

We thank our captains for their time and dedication to this event! Becky Richardson, Marvin Buchanan from Alabama, Anita Russell, Steve Duffel from Arkansas, Jan Dennis, Hill Griffin from Georgia, Susan Habeeb, Greg Combs from Kentucky, Elizabeth Chesteen from Louisiana, Jane Holland, Dave Randall from Mississippi, Vicki and Maurice Everette from North Carolina, Roberta Case and Tom Foster from South Carolina and Dana Butchee, John Nixon from Tennessee deserve a thank you from all of the players for their efforts.

 

We all hope that Maureen Read, W75LA, has a speedy recovery and is back on the court soon! Some players had to play four matches in one day: in this heat that was truly courageous!

 

Hope to see you all again next year! Hope you will hang your poster with Southern’s Finest #1 Ranked players/teams at your tennis facility and help us recognize them for their tennis achievements! If you have any suggestions for next year, please email me at Sherman@sta.usta.com. In closing, I’d like to say how wonderful it is to work for the USTA Southern Section, the largest and BEST tennis organization in the USTA!!!!!!!

 

 


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