BECK COLUMN: Renovations make Maybank and St. Andrew's stand out
There's a fresh new look at two public tennis complexes west of the Ashley. Maybank Tennis Center and the St. Andrew's tennis complex have spruced up their facilites in a big-time way.
These facilities that had been showing wear now can compete with the best complexes in the area. Maybank, with its spaced-out eight lighted hard courts and five unlighted clay courts, is especially impressive.
Maybank is now one of the area's most viewer-friendly facilities. That was evident by the way the crowd enjoyed a recent Charleston Pro Tennis League program that officially reopened the completely renovated James Island complex.
Because of Maybank's resort-like low fencing on the sides and open space, fans were able to spread out over the complex and still easily observe the competition. The Maybank complex offers a perfect site for future CPTL events.
St. Andrew's 11 lighted hard courts have been rebuilt with new fencing, complete with a convenient walkway separating its two four-court banks of courts. The complex itself is now excellent, even with the same lighting.
The problem with lights has been the glare of the off-site security lights that appear to be directed toward the courts. That lighting issue still exists for night matches.
Eyraud CPTL champion
Fourth-place regular season finisher Eyraud Enterprises is the new CPTL champion after defeating regular season runner-up LCTA during the popular league's finals night program at Family Circle Tennis Center. Eyraud captain Matt Hane and Brandon Blankenbaker carried their team to the championship by winning two matches each in the final.
Hane, the big-serving I'On tennis director, won singles and then teamed with Blankenbaker to capture the No. 1 doubles match. Hane and Blankenbaker are the reigning men's 30 grass court national champions.
With women joining the CPTL for the first season, Blankenbaker then teamed with Kristen Whitehead to give Eyraud a win in mixed doubles. Ryan Blankenbaker and Nick Gaffos finished off the victory for Eyraud by winning at No. 2 doubles.
Regular season champion Going Postal, captained by Phil Whitesell, took the third-place match with a win over regular season third-place finisher Hunter Specialties, which was captained by Brian Burke.
In the semifinals that were played earlier in the evening, Eyraud knocked off Going Postal while Bryan Minton's LCTA upended Hunter Specialties.
The CPTL used the fast-moving World Team Tennis format this fall for the first time. Matches throughout the season and playoffs were determined by the WTT's total number of games format
John Fanning's 8.5 adult men from Mount Pleasant Rec and Genessa Donohue's 7.5 adult women's team from Maybank Tennis Center won state combo championships and earned berths in the March 1-3 Southern combo league championships in Mobile, Ala.
Three local super senior teams recently won state titles. A 3.5 women's 70 team from Collins Park captained by Penelope Gorby, a 3.5 men's 60 team from Family Circle Tennis Center captained by Bob Peiffer and a 4.5 women's 60 team captained by Maureen O'Berg won state titles.
Summerville's Thanksgiving Tennis Classic is scheduled for next Saturday and Sunday at Doty Park. Registration is available on the internet by going to www.summerville.sc.us and selecting Thanksgiving tournament. Contact tournament director Nancy Sumersett (270-1017, 851-5211 or firstname.lastname@example.org).
Ashley Hall star Narni Summerall, the 2011 Lowcountry girls player of the year, has signed to play college tennis for Dartmouth. Summerall suffered only three singles losses in four years of high school tennis.
Adam Elliget won the boys 16 doubles title at the Norcross, Ga., nationals, playing with Simon Jayaram of Atlanta.
Reach James Beck at email@example.com. See his columns on pro tennis at ubitennis.com/english.