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UNC wins fourth annual Border Battle

The University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill took home first place at the 2015 Border Battle between USTA Southern and USTA Mid-Atlantic, defeating North Carolina State University 21-18 in the final match. A total of 26 competed in this year’s Border Battle, the highest number of schools to ever participate in the four years of the tournament’s history.

The Border Battle features Tennis On Campus teams from schools all across the USTA Southern and USTA Mid-Atlantic sections. The concept for the tournament was developed as a way to offer more chances for these teams to compete.

“We wanted to provide Tennis On Campus teams additional play opportunities in the spring. Currently a lot of their plays takes place in the fall,” said Carolina Downs, USTA North Carolina Junior & College League Coordinator. “Shell Wood (Adult Recreation Manager for USTA Mid-Atlantic) and I decided it would be fun to do a North Carolina-Virginia tournament around spring break and host the event at the beach. Now we’ve opened it up to all of USTA-Mid Atlantic and USTA Southern. Any team in either section can attend.”

Downs and Wood started the Border Battle in 2012, bringing six teams together to compete. They were able to add 10 teams from last year’s total of 16 to the 2015 tournament.

While the Border Battle is a fun event to help teams gain experience, it’s certainly still a competitive atmosphere. Bragging rights are on the line, not only for the schools competing, but for each section.

“This year we started some friendly trash-talking on social media. Mid-Atlantic and Southern were both going back and forth with posts and pictures on their pages. We like to see everyone get involved with the tournament,” Downs said. “It’s great to see how much the Border Battle has changed and grown in just a few years.”

The 2015 Border Battle was held from March 27-29 in Wilmington at Althea Gibson Tennis Complex. In conjunction with the tournament, USTA North Carolina also put together a Tennis On Campus Alumni Bash, bringing former club players together for a tournament of their own. These events are now annual fixtures for USTA North Carolina.

If you’re interested in playing Tennis On Campus, contact Caroline Downs at caroline@nctennis.com. If you’re a former player looking to get into adult league play, contact Travis Sandman at travis@nctennis.com.