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Tennessee Teen Wins National Sportsmanship Award

January 12, 2006 10:25 AM

The United States Tennis Association (USTA) announced yesterday the names of the four recipients of the Bill Talbert Junior Sportsmanship Award. Included amongst the winners is eighteen year old Davey Sandgren, of Gallatin, TN.

The Bill Talbert Junior Sportsmanship Awards are presented each year by the Board of Directors of the International Tennis Hall of Fame. Four recipients are selected from nominations received from the 17 USTA sections. The award goes to a junior player who best exemplifies the finest qualities of sportsmanship in tournament play and the finest traditions of the great sportspersons of tennis past and present.

“Davey Sandgren is the ultimate authority on good sportsmanship,” said USTA Southern Section President Jeff Gray. “He is a pleasure to be around and his behavior and attitude on court never waivers. I can’t think of a more deserving recipient.”

Sandgren, 18, has collected an impressive number of national and sectional sportsmanship awards over the years. In 2005 alone he was presented with awards from three different tournaments, including the Boys’ 18 Southern Designated in Raleigh, NC, the Southern Closed Boys’ 18s in Little Rock, AR and the Boys’ 18 Southern Designated in Mobile, AL where he was also the tournament champion. He finished the year with a 65-24 record and was ranked no. 2 in the Southern Boys’ 18s and no. 32 in the National Boys’ 18s.

“It is a great honor to receive this award,” said Sandgren. “Growing up I was taught that tennis is a gentleman’s game and over the years I’ve tried to play with honor and respect for both the sport and my opponents.”

Sandgren has a personal philosophy he tries to abide by when on the court.

“Making fair calls, complimenting my opponents on their good performance and generally being friendly and civilized works with most guys. Once we establish a good atmosphere of chivalry, getting egos, distrust, and emotions out of the way, we can get on with the real reason we stepped out on the court in the first place- to play the game, the game we love so much.”

The other recipients of the Talbert Award are Spencer Mendoza of Vancouver, WA, Spencer Vegosen of Chicago, IL and Ashley Weinhold of Austin, TX. All four winners will receive their award July 15 at the International Tennis Hall of Fame annual enshrinement ceremonies in Newport, RI.




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