Tennis On Campus
Eastern Section Championship
November 1, 2018
Temperatures may have dipped into the mid-40s, but a little chill couldn’t cool down the fierce competition at the 2019 Tennis On Campus Eastern Section Championships, held October 21-22 at the Cary Leeds Center For Tennis & Learning in the Bronx. A total of 23 club teams from 15 colleges came out to compete in the tournament, with the four top-finishing teams earning automatic bids to the 2019 Tennis On Campus National Championships: champions Cornell A, runner-up Syracuse A, third-place finisher Rutgers A and semifinalist Rochester A. (Nationals will kick off April 11 in Surprise, Arizona.)
“This is our favorite tournament of the fall,” said Depei Yu, a member of the victorious Cornell team. “The facility is great, the teams are really fun. It’s very well-organized—everybody has a really great time.”
Yu’s teammate Kevin Zhang took the male MVP honors and won quite the prize as a result: Paid entry directly into the New York Open/USTA Eastern Wildcard tournament, which will be held November 16-18 at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Queens. The winner of that competition will get a spot in the main draw of the New York Open, a Long Island-based tournament on the ATP tour that features some of the top athletes in the sport. (2018 Wimbledon finalist and Roger Federer conqueror Kevin Anderson won last year’s inaugural event.) Molly Sandberg, also of Cornell, took home the female MVP award and received a VIP package for two to the New York Open.
The Team Sportsmanship award went to the Cornell B team, captained by Caroline Zhou. And Rutgers’ David Sosidko was awarded Captain of the Tournament. Off the court, Sosidko and the Rutgers club have worked to grow the sport in their area; they previously helped host a Youth Tennis League in New Brunswick, New Jersey.
“Being a part of this club has really helped me grow as a leader,” Sosidko said. “It’s great for everyone to come out and play tennis. It’s just a really great community-building [experience].”