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Finishing 2021 Nationals Strong

November 29, 2021

The USTA Mid-Atlantic teams continue to serve up success on a silver racquet. Not one, not two, but three teams have landed a spot in the top four at Nationals on November 12-14. 


“Being in the top four is truly an amazing achievement for our team,” said Johnny Hsiung, Captain of the Howard-Columbia 40 & Over 6.0 Mixed team that placed third against Northern Oregon Mixed 40 & Over team at Nationals. “A top four finish is validation for all of the hard work that our team has put into improving our individual games and working toward  a common team goal.”


Hsiung believes the true reason his team has been successful this season is due to their everlasting support for one another on and off of the court. Each and every teammate had one common goal, to make it to the Championships at Nationals. They banded together to make that dream come true. 


Playing alongside Hsiung was: Co-Captain Douglas Turner, Angela Lee, Na Yi, Evelyn Chan, Ruxandra Badiu, Cynthia Rapp, Michael Vanderputten, Bill Hartman, Bryan Chapin, Andrew Brammer, Karen Francis,  John Lee, Andaiye Hamilton, Abigail Suarez, Karen Jones, Kara Sun, Surendra Babu, and Todd Templeman. 


This Nationals season has been a motivator for hard work from every team. The immense amount of time and effort put in on the court is a direct reflection of each teammate's commitment to success. 


The DC MTL 40 & Over 9.0 Mixed team saw their hard work really pay off by placing third against the Philadelphia Mixed 40 & Over team during the Third-Fourth Play Off. 


“It’s not only a reward for the hard work we put into the season, the incredible talent and work of the players on our team, but also a reflection of how strong our Section is,” said Captain Grace Kim. 


Kim explained her team aimed to represent the Mid-Atlantic Section in the best way possible. What makes the Mid-Atlantic community unique as well as prosperous is the community that has been built between individuals from all walks of life. 


“We have an extremely competitive area with a lot of strong players, depth, and other amazing captains,” said Kim. “We are all supportive of one another because we are all familiar with the players on our teams. So, I wanted to do well not just for our team, but for all the other people we competed against along the way.”


Playing alongside Kim was: Co-Captain Jonathan Santos, Inese Williamson, Alex Hur, Kara Stevenson, Reginald Tull, Stephanie Evans, Steven Wenzel, Ye Hu, Landon Schaefer, Malini Sekhar, Christopher Hethcox, Jason Wall, Rohan Wadehra, Dan Winicour, Leah Noonan, Tuyet Cahill, John Anderson, Prem Vadlamudi, Chris Downs, James Peterson, and Tatiana Nogales. 


USTA Mid-Atlantic tennis creates community and connections that can click even after years of time apart.   


Captain Ele Pratt and Co-Captain Will Wong of the Montgomery County 40 & Over 8.0 Mixed team have known each other for years. This year in particular for them was really special, placing fourth in the Third Fourth Play Off against USTA Florida Pinellas Mixed 40 & Over team. 


“We were co-captains of an 8.0 Nationals team over 10 years ago. Since then, life happened [having kids, family, etc.], needless to say, we took a break from captaincy for many years,” said Pratt and Wong. Both Wong and Pratt got the opportunity to come back together. They shared, “For the team, getting to the Semi-Finals by two sets on Sunday and placing 4th overall means a lot. To be able to bring back the Glory Days again at Nationals 2021 was truly an amazing journey.” 


Playing alongside of Pratt and Wong are: Gregory Chambers, Richard Laukitis, Thomas Leuba, Michele Diez, Daniel Lawson, Cora Ho, Cece Finan, Edison Penafiel, Annmarie Taggio, Caridad Coto, Ryan Rohn, Loretta Sevier, Dawn Johnson, Carolina Posada, Cynthia Cummis, Abimbola Okubena, Kara Stevenson, and Agnes Trice. 


Congratulations to all of the USTA Mid-Atlantic teams that participated and represented the Section at USTA Nationals on November 12-14.


The Mid-Atlantic Section is proud of every team that has made Nationals season nothing short of amazing. 


To follow Mid-Atlantic’s journey at Nationals make sure to visit our Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter for updates. Also, if you’re feeling inspired by these victories and want to get out on the tennis court, you can find a USTA League near you by viewing the local league calendar or by contacting us and we will help you find a team. 


USTA Mid-Atlantic is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization committed to promoting tennis and its physical, social, and emotional health benefits. Learn about our impact in the Section and how USTA Mid-Atlantic creates community, character, and well-being.


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