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2006 Southern Tennis Hall of Fame Inductees Named

September 15, 2005 02:44 PM

The USTA Southern Section announced today that Greenville, Mississippi’s Sharon Gault, Winston-Salem, North Carolina’s John Peddycord and Greenville, South Carolina’s Paul Scarpa have been selected for induction into the Southern Tennis Hall of Fame. The 2006 induction ceremony is scheduled for Saturday, January 21, 2006 at the Atlanta Perimeter Marriott in Atlanta, Ga.

The first Southern Tennis Hall of Fame class was inducted in 1977.

Sharon Gault

Sharon Gault, a lifetime resident of Mississippi, has been involved in tennis since the early 70’s as a recreational player. Today, Gault holds a Chairman position with the USTA Southern Section on the Growth & Participation Committee and is a Division Council Chairman for the Adult/Senior Council with the USTA. She also currently holds the Vice Chairman position on the USTA’s Advisory Group on Committees.

Gault first became involved with USTA Mississippi in 1978 when she became Chairman for both the Sanctions/Schedules and Junior Ranking Committees. That same year she was named to Mississippi’s Board of Directors. In 1981, Gault was named First Vice President of USTA Mississippi and in 1983 she moved into the Presidency position. In 1985, she and her family were presented with the state’s Family of the Year award and she was further honored for her hard work and contributions to the game in 1996 when she was inducted into the Mississippi Tennis Hall of Fame.

Since 1985, Gault has taken a leadership position on various committees with the USTA Southern Section. Originally the Vice Chairman of the Adult League Committee, she took over the chairman role in 1986. She then joined the USTA Southern Section Executive Committee in 1988, originally holding the position of Secretary. After one year in that position she took over the Vice Presidential duties. She has chaired various committees for USTA Southern over the years including the Adult/Senior Competition Committee, Southern Senior Cup, and the Strategic Planning Committee.

Gault has been honored numerous times by the USTA Southern Section. In 1997 she was presented with the Section’s highest honor, the Jacobs Bowl Award. In 1991 she was given the Gerrie Rothwell Award for her work with the Adult League Program, in 2001 she earned the Charles B. Morris Service Award and in 1992 she was presented with the USTA Southern Section Volunteer Service Award.

Over the years Gault has also been involved nationally working on many different committees, most notably as the Chairman of the USTA League Tennis Open Subcommittee and the USTA League Tennis Committee. She was the Division Council Chairman for the Competitive Play Council in 2003-2004.

Throughout the last few decades, Gault has also taken on the role as Tournament Director for various tournaments including the USTA Mississippi League Tennis Mixed Doubles and Adult/Senior State Championships, the Washington County Tennis Championships and the USTA Mississippi Junior Open and Closed Championships.

Away from the game she has been honored by the Greenville Area Chamber of Commerce with the “Delta Point of Pride” Award. In 1992 she received the “Woman of the Year” Award from the Four Aces Racquet Club.

Gault has two children, Win and Will and four grandchildren.

John Peddycord

John Peddycord has spent the last 35 years of his life volunteering his time for the betterment of tennis in the South as well as the country. Today, he utilizes the knowledge he accrued at Wachovia Capital Management, where he retired as Senior Vice President in 2002, working on the USTA Southern Section Budget and Investment & Finance Committees, the USTA’s Investment Committee, and the USTA North Carolina Tennis Foundation’s Planning and Fundraising Committees. He is also chairman of the Southern Tennis Patrons Foundation Investment Committee.

Peddycord’s tennis volunteerism began back in 1972 when he helped found Winston-Salem Tennis, Inc. (WSTI), a non-profit organization that works to bring the sport of tennis to the area's citizens through instructional programs, tournament competition and league play. He was named to the Board when the organization was formed and he still holds that position today. Over the years Peddycord has worked a variety of assignments for WSTI; serving as President in 1974, co-chairman of the North Carolina Junior Qualifying Tournament in both 1973 and 1985 and chairman of the USTA Boys’ 12 Clay Court Championships in 1976-1978 & 1982.

USTA North Carolina has been fortunate to have Peddycord as a Board Member for over 30 years, including 1979-1980 when he served as President of the organization. Over the years he helped establish the N.C. Umpires Association and he coordinated the establishment of the North Carolina Tennis Hall of Fame offices in Greensboro, NC.

Peddycord has also been a Board Member of the North Carolina Tennis Foundation for over 25 years, even serving as its President from 1981-1982. He has also chaired various committees for the foundation including the Nominating Committee and the Hall of Fame Coordinating Committee. He’s been a member of the N.C. Hall of Fame Selection Committee for the last eleven years.

The USTA Southern Section is also fortunate to have had Peddycord’s service for the last 25 years. During his time with the USTA Southern Section Peddycord has served two years as a USTA Delegate, five as Section Vice-President, six as Chairman of the Junior Tennis Council and eight years as the Chairman of the Investment and Finance Committee.

Peddycord has been honored time and time again for his contributions to the game. He and his family were presented with both the USTA North Carolina and USTA Southern Section Family of the Year awards in 1988 and he was presented with Southern’s Jacobs Bowl Award in 1984. He was also enshrined in the North Carolina Tennis Hall of Fame in 1990.

At the National level, Peddycord has contributed his time and knowledge over the years to various areas serving on committees such as the Junior Tennis Council, the Circuit Advisory and Junior Davis Cup Committee, the Player Development Committee, the Steering Committee, the Magazine Committee and the Olympic Committee. He served as Chairman for both the Junior Competition Committee from 1989-1995 and the Nominating Committee from 1995-1996. He was Vice Chairman of the Finance, Audit and Evaluation Committee from 1997-2000 and is still active on the USTA Investment Committee.

Paul Scarpa

As one of the most successful NCAA Division I coaches in America, Paul Scarpa has amassed 760 wins and his 41 years of experience and .616 winning percentage rank among the nation’s elite. He’s a member of both the USTA South Carolina Tennis Hall of Fame and the Furman University Hall of Fame.

Now in his 40th year of coaching at Furman Scarpa wrote his name in the record books on April 22, 2001, when he became only the fourth coach in history to reach the 700 win plateau. He has posted winning records against top competition in 35 of his 39 seasons at Furman.

Paul Scarpa grew up in Charleston, SC where he developed into an outstanding junior player in the 1950’s, winning the first 18-and-under singles title at the Palmetto Championships in Belton in 1957. That same year he was the top ranked player in South Carolina and was no. 3 in the South in the Boys’ 18’s. After high school graduation Scarpa attended Florida State University where he became the top singles and doubles player on the team, going on to play, and win, the NCAA Eastern Intercollegiate Championships. Scarpa also holds the distinction of being the first player to win the S.C. State Men’s Championship both as an amateur and later as a professional.

Following college graduation, Scarpa, was hired as head tennis coach at Florida State and the Naval Academy. In 1966 he moved to Greenville, SC to work as both head tennis professional at Greenville Country Club and head coach at Furman University. He continued to play tennis competitively, and was a semifinalist in both singles and doubles at the National Teaching Professionals Championships, an achievement that helped Scarpa win South Carolina’s Professional-of-the-Year award in 1975.

Scarpa left Greenville Country Club in 1973 to devote full time to his coaching responsibilities at Furman. He has entered his 40th year and is the only head coach to have ever led Furman’s Men’s Tennis Team.

Scarpa became the first coach in the state to develop a tennis camp on a college campus in 1970. This summer will mark the camp’s 36th year at Furman. The camp is highly regarded and over the years has drawn some of the best young talent from across the nation.

As one of the most influential players and coaches ever produced by the state of South Carolina, Paul Scarpa’s contribution to tennis at Furman University and the Palmetto state might be summed up best when he became only the eighth inductee into the South Carolina Tennis Hall-of-Fame in 1986. He has won a number of awards, including the 1990 and 2000 South Carolina Coach-of-the-Year award. He also has been named the Southern Conference Coach-of-the-Year seven times.

While Paul’s influence has lefts its mark at Furman and in South Carolina, his contributions to the game have also been felt at the national level. He developed and patented Textex, a line tape used on clay court surfaces. In 1993, in what Scarpa claims as one of his proudest achievements, the NCAA began utilizing a new dual match scoring system, developed by Scarpa. Intended to shorten the length of a typical dual match, the “Scarpa System” the format specified that all matches begin with doubles point. This successfully increased overall intensity and fan interest, two elements that are the hallmarks of Scarpa’s Furman program. The format has since been adopted for women’s matches.

Furman has honored Scarpa in a number of ways over the years. A tennis scholarship was endowed in his name in 1986 and he was inducted into the school’s Athletic Hall-of-Fame in 1994. In 1995 the University built the Minor Herndon Mickel Tennis Center and announced that the championship court would be named in his honor. Furman proclaimed April 10, 1999 “Paul Scarpa Day,” and honored the coach with a special ceremony before his 1000th match at Furman.

Paul Scarpa is one of the true champions of our sport. He is known throughout the college community as a leader, a great coach, a great motivator and a true gentleman.




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