Senior leagues crown local champs

Published April 4, 2007

Winners were named in 13 of 14 divisions in the senior, super senior and super 70 doubles local leagues.

Champions in the women's Senior Doubles League for 50-plus players are McMullen 3.0, Vinoy 3.5 and St. Petersburg Tennis Center 4.0 and 4.5. In the senior men's league, Countryside Country Club 3.0, Racquet Club 4.0 and Royal Racquet Club 4.5 claimed titles. Feather Sound Country Club and the Racquet Club will square off Saturday for the 3.5 title.

Claiming Super Senior Doubles titles for 60-plus players are SPTC 7.0 and McMullen 8.0 women's teams and Safety Harbor Spa 7.0 and McMullen 8.0 men's squads. McMullen claimed the Super 70 Doubles League for women 70-plus in the 3.5, as did Shipwatch Tennis Club for the men. Super senior winners advance to state this month and senior winners compete for state titles in May.

"Winning wasn't our goal when we formed our team, but was based more on friendship and having fun," said Janice Stone, captain of the super senior 7.0 women's team. "We found, though, that winning made it even more fun."

Joining Stone are Joyce Rosner, Karen Edwards, Bonnie Rickus, Diane McDaniel, Unho Ko, Gayle Woodley, Gen Casey, Karen Winiecki, Elaine Concors and Liz Gaffney.

Earl Gehant thinks this season's 4.0 senior men's team may be the first to advance to state from the Racquet Club of St. Petersburg. "We have a lot of good competition in our area, so it's quite a mark for us to advance through it and be the local winner," Gehant said. "A big part of our success locally is due to our being pretty strong up and down the line."

The Racquet Club posted a 6-1 record among eight teams and includes Gehant, John McQuillen, Paul Tomey, Bob Steele, Hernan Molina, Robert Vicander, Mike Williams and Ron Woods.

St. Pete Tennis center's 4.0 senior women's squad was unbeaten among seven teams, as was SPTC's 4.5 senior team.

"I feel we have good depth on our team this year," said Jackie Keller, captain of the SPTC 4.5 women's squad. "From last year's team that won state and advanced to nationals are Andrea Martin, Liz Leigh and myself. We picked up Lisa Grattan and Lynn Sayler from the area and Sharon Benson, Jane Haughney and Leslie Godwin from Tampa."

Super 70 women's champion McMullen won all five matches against Bardmoor, a former state champion. Team members include captain Ruth Ann Ott, Helen Battles, Dolores Hayman, Dee Howard, Carol Horton, Nancy Kraemer, Gwen Leclair and Kathleen Hogan.

Shipwatch won 11 of its 12 matches in the men's Super 70 league. Led by captain Henry Van Drunan, team members include John Finlayson, Charles Eikner, Leon Hibbs, Johnie Howard, Red Odden, Bill Glasser, Billy Oliver, Peter Priston and Al Blackburn.

NET SHOTS: Debbie Hobbs women's 35-and-over, Page Buck (men's 35) and Andres Molina (45) collected singles titles in East Lake Woodlands' Senior Championships. Tom Colacchio and Dick Fletcher won the men's 65 doubles; Judy and Pat Siracusa captured the mixed 45 title.

- Among the singles winners in the Sarmiento's Annual Championships were Anastasha Worlds (girls 10-and-under), Natalie Phippen (12) and Edward Corty (16).

- Seminole Lake Tennis Center Rockin Rookie winners included girls 10 top seed Alexis Franco, girls 12 No. 2 Jessica Stephens, boys 14 round robin Alexander Schultz and boys 16 Daniel Lang.

News may be faxed to Nancy Morgan, 445-4119; e-mailed to namorgan@tampabay.rr.com or sent to 710 Court St., Clearwater, FL 33756.