Asheville – Fourteen local WNC tennis players qualified for the National Tennis Finals in Arizona held on Oct 17. The women’s 4.0 team plays out of the Asheville Racquet Club (ARC). When they aren’t playing tennis or tending to their families, they have careers that take up most of their daylight hours.
Fun On and Off the Court
How did they become such a good team? Team captain, Susie Manley, commented, “These ladies have fun on and off the court, and enjoy the sport tremendously, even though several of the team’s players have only been playing for under ten years. I think their friendships play a large role in the team peaking at the right time.”
Their preliminary tournaments were the NC State Championships played this summer in AVL at ARC, which they won, and then on to Sectionals, played in Rome, GA back in July. They came out of Sectionals beating all the teams from Louisiana, Georgia, Arkansas, Tennessee, Mississippi, Kentucky and Alabama. Their qualification for National’s is more than honorable, especially since the level of 4.0 “18’s” means they could compete against players of 4.0 level in their 20’s. Most of all Manley’s team are 40. In Arizona, the WNC Team played 3 doubles and 2 singles matches per round. Manley noted, “We lost to New England in the semi’s, but felt pretty good about our scores. We stood our ground to best of our abilities; the New England Team ended up winning the Nationals. Their playoff match was against a tough team from Jacksonville, FL, which they won. This put the WNC players in third place of the tournament. The second place award went to a Pennsylvania team from Newtown Square. Manley goes on record for having made the best captain’s speech at the awards ceremony in Phoenix. Her players won the good sportsmanship award out of all the teams participating from 52 states.