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Team Piedmont Wins The 2017 Carolina Cup

Team Piedmont Wins The 2017 Carolina Cup

On Sunday, April 30th, Team Piedmont (right) and Team West squared off in what would be the deciding contest in the 2017 Carolina Cup. While Team West started off hot, winning six of the first seven singles matches, it was the strong finish by Team Piedmont that ultimately determined the tournament. Team Piedmont won five of the last six doubles matches, securing their first ever Carolina Cup victory! Team Piedmont finished the tournament with a total score of 57 points, while Team West (51 points), Team Triangle (42 points), and Team East (30 points) rounded out the field respectively.

 “There were so many good matches going on at once, it was hard to pick which one you were going to watch,” said Joanna Scott, USTA North Carolina’s Tournament and Competition Coordinator. “We had several top ranked state and USTA Southern players, as well as some amazing former college athletes competing in this year’s Carolina Cup. All of them elevated the play in the tournament, and it was truly amazing to watch.”

Almost 200 men and women from around the state were invited to Old Forest Racquet Club in Elon to compete in the 16th year of the Carolina Cup. For this tournament, the state of North Carolina is divided into four teams: West, Piedmont, Triangle, and East. The players, in age groups ranging from 30 to 70-year-old divisions, then compete in various singles and doubles matches. For every match that is won, the corresponding team receives a point, with the total number of points deciding the winner at the end of the tournament.

Matches began early Friday, April 28th and the action didn’t end until late into the afternoon on Sunday, April 30th. As many as 14 matches were played at one time, ten outdoor clay courts and four indoor clay courts, using all the courts Olde Forest Racquet Club had to offer. Players who were not on the court could be found cheering and socializing on the upper patio overlooking the outdoor tennis facility, or watching the indoor matches from the second floor viewing area of the indoor facility.

 “As a new member of the USTA North Carolina staff, there could not have been a better host for me to work with during my first Carolina Cup,” said Scott. “Jag Gowda, Stacey Higgins, Sue Lamm-Gurley, the volunteers, and the rest of the Olde Forest staff were absolutely tremendous! They made every player feel welcomed, and they extended that same hospitality to me. They provide an atmosphere that is inviting for both the athletes and spectators. I had several players throughout the weekend ask me if we could make Olde Forest the permanent home of the Carolina Cup.”

Sue Lamm Gurley served as Tournament Director for this event, while Peggy Golden acted as Chair Emeritus. Head Referee for the tournament was Joan Cox, and Rich Dowler served as roving official.

Captains for the four squads were John Collins (Men's East) and Jonnie Harris (Women's East), Bill Ashley (Men's Piedmont) and Telfair Belangia/Tina Klaus (Women's Piedmont), Richard McClenney (Men's Triangle) and Michelle Ahlquist (Women's Triangle), and Christopher Ehmcke (Men's West) and Debbie Carmazzi (Women's West).

For a complete schedule of events and team rosters, please CLICK HERE for the official Carolina Cup Program.

More Pictures from the 2017 Carolina Cup can be found HERE