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Nate Young, VCSU Win

2018 TOC Awards

USTA Northern  |  March 5, 2018

Congratulations to Nate Young of Minnesota State Moorhead and Valley City State University on being named the 2018 USTA Northern Tennis on Campus Leader and Club of the Year, respectively. Both are now eligible for the national awards to be announced at the Tennis on Campus National Championships in April.

After founding the program in the Spring of 2017, Young’s first order of business was to recruit players to the program through the school newspaper and a booth at freshman orientation. Over 50 people showed interest in the program with 20 remaining active throughout the season.

MSUM played seven events in its inaugural campaign, including the Minnesota State Moorhead Invite.  Other tournaments played included the Valley City State Invite, the Gopher Invite, the Cyclone Slam at Iowa State, the Gustie Invite, and the first ever Border Battle in Fargo. ADVERTISEMENT The team practiced three times a week and had organized several social opportunities for team members including movies and a US Open viewing party.

Young started playing tennis as a freshman in high school and had played at Junior Team Tennis Nationals in South Carolina, participated in the state tournament and has been a teaching pro for the last four years at Courts Plus in Fargo where he teaches 20 hours a week. He is getting his certification from the Professional Tennis Registry in May.

“Since transferring to MSUM from Valley City State, Nate has done an outstanding job working with the University to establish its first-ever Tennis On Campus club team,” Erik Kringlie, Tennis on Campus leader at Valley City State, said. “He has worked hard to recruit players, raise money, arrange transportation and even host a TOC series event, all in his first year. The Dragons have been a great team to compete against and work with as they teamed with NDSU to host the first ever TOC Northern Border Battle at Courts Plus. For a first year TOC Club Captain, he has done an outstanding job getting this team going and making sure it can continue in future years! Nate is very deserving of the USTA Northern TOC Leader of the Year!”

Established in 2014, Valley City State boasted its second-largest team ever with 14 players and raised over $5,000 this season. Playing in all five TOC USTA Northern events offered this year, the team finished with a program high 17-6 regular-season record. The Vikings took home the Silver Bracket title at the 2018 USTA Northern Section Championships.

For the ninth year, the team played host to the Viking Invitational in September and then co-hosted the first-ever Tennis On Campus Northern Border Battle in January which saw teams from North Dakota and Minnesota faceoff against each other for bragging rights. North Dakota won the inaugural tournament.

Off the court, the team is making a huge impact in the community as it works with the university, schools, the Valley City Tennis Association (VCTA) and the local park and rec. The club hosts an annual campus tennis tournament for players and non-players creating a connection with students, campus staff and faculty. They also partner with the VCTA to coach a USTA World Team Tennis team, serve as court monitors during the Valley City Junior Level 6 tournament, provide volunteers to help run a Tennis Block Party for the community each May and assist with high school drill nights in the summer and during the season. Club president Paige Fettig serves on the Valley City Tennis Association Board of Directors, and this summer, Fettig and her teammates participated in the Valley City Summer Adult League.

The team also partnered with the VCTA to collect gently-used racquets and equipment in supporting USTA Northern’s Play it Forward campaign and donated $400 to the Valley City Park and Recreation summer tennis program.       

“VCSU is one of the premier programs in our Section,” USTA Northern Director of Junior Teams Brandon Jackson said. “Not only have they hosted two events on top of traveling to every series event, but they also helped mentor a new program and volunteered with countless opportunities in their community. VCSU is a club and community that more people should look to use as a model for building future programs.”




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