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USTA Northern Highlights

March 2018 

USTA Northern  |  March 19, 2018
<h2>USTA Northern Highlights</h2>
<h1>March 2018 </h1>

USTA Northern News & Notes

Becky Cantellano Named New Executive Director

Former USTA Northern Director of Tennis Programs and Services and St. Paul Urban Tennis Exectuive Director Becky Cantellano has been named the Section’s new Executive Director replacing Mike Goldammer, who resigned in November. In her new position, Cantellano, who started March 14, will ensure USTA Northern is providing tools, training and leadership necessary for volunteers, community leaders and tennis enthusiasts to continue promoting and growing the game of tennis. She will also lead efforts to expand and enhance the organization’s programs while increasing and strengthening participation in the game and the volunteer engagement. Cantellano’s new email address is

USTA Northern To Host Member Appreciation Event With The Gophers Men

Come enjoy FREE tennis, food, drink and prizes as part of USTA Northern Member Appreciation Day with the Gopher men's tennis team as they play Big Ten rival Michigan April 15 at the Baseline Tennis Center. ADVERTISEMENT Participants can register for one of two Cardio Tennis sessions at 10:30 or 11:15 a.m., followed by lunch and the match beginning at 12 Noon.  To RSVP, contact Sandy Smith by April 12 at

Tom Fridinger Family; Roshan Rajkumar Win USTA National Awards
The Tom Fridinger Family (Tom, Ellen, Steve, Beth, Evan, Caleb & Luke) of White Beak Lake, Minn., and Woodbury, Minn., and Roshan Rajkumar (St. Louis Park, Minn.) were named the 2018 USTA Ralph Westcott National Family of the Year and the USTA National Volunteer of the Year for service of 10 years or less, respectively. All were honored on March 17 at the USTA Annual Meeting in Carlsbad, Calif.

Eau Claire’s New John & Fay Menard Center Opens April 6-8
Come celebrate the grand opening of the John & Fay Menard YMCA Tennis Center April 6-8 in Eau Claire, Wis. Festivities begin Friday with a high school tennis tournament and the Grand Opening Gala and Silent Auction from 7-10 p.m. Tickets for the Gala are $50, which includes food and beverage, and dress is business casual. On Saturday, there will be a Cardio Tennis session from 9-10:30 a.m. (Free for members; $5 for community members), followed by group drills with former French Open Doubles champion Luke Jensen. A doubles mixer and reception will follow with the opportunity to purchase Jensen as your doubles partner. Cost is $20. More Cardio Tennis kicks off Sunday’s events with open court time to follow (Free for members; $5 for community members).For more information, or to purchase tickets to the events, please contact Matt Boughton at

Eric Butorac, Bethhanie Mattek-Sands Coming To Raise The Net Rally Fundraiser April 29 in Rochester

Support tennis in the Rochester area at the Raise the Net Fundraiser April 29 from 3-7 p.m. with former Grand Slam Doubles Finalist Eric Butorac! Others attending include Gold Medal swimmer David Plummer, former Green Bay Packer and Minnesota Gopher football player Darrell Thompson and Gustavus Women’s Basketball Coach Laurie Trow Kelly. All proceeds will benefit refurbishing Kutzky Park in Rochester! Get your tickets at

Junior Tennis News

Jon Pickett Leads Team Twizzler To Gold Medal, Sportsmanship Award; Emmanuel Alex Wins Gold

Congrats to USTA Northern coach Jon Pickett (Eau Claire, Wis.) on leading Team Twizzler to the gold medal at the National Team Championships in Tucson, Ariz. His team also won the Sportsmanship Award and had the individual sportsmanship winner, while junior player Emmanuel Alex (Arden Hills, Minn.) also won a gold medal in Tucson.


Wendy Hastings Named USTA No-Cut Coach
Head girls tennis coach Wendy Hastings (Menomonie, Wis.) has been selected to the USTA National No-Cut All-Star Team which recognizes exceptional high school coaches who implement an inclusive no-cut policy for their high school tennis team. Hastings received $500 for her tennis program in Menomonie.

Yee Thao Receives $1,000 College Scholarship from USTA Northern & Insperity
Congratulations to Harding High School senior Yee Thao (St. Paul, Minn.) who was the inaugural recipient of the USTA Northern Serving Up Love College Scholarship courtesy of Insperity. Insperity donated $1,000 to Serving Up Love specifically designated to fund a college scholarship for a deserving high school senior.


Four Others Receive Player Development Scholarships
Congratulations to Hunter Heck (St. Paul, Minn.), Pemola Wachungtsang (St. Paul, Minn.), Wangmo Wachungtsang (St. Paul, Minn.) and Amanye Reynolds (St. Paul, Minn.) as all received Serving Up Love scholarships to help with tennis expenses. Overall, Serving Up Love has already awarded over $5,000 in scholarships for junior players in 2018.

Many More Scholarships Available For Junior Players
USTA Northern still has a number of scholarships available to junior players. For more information, please contact Sandy Smith at or at (952) 358-3288.

      • USTA Northern Tennis Camp Scholarships – Awarded to a male or female player age 13 or younger that demonstrates both a financial need and commitment to tennis. Player must receive an endorsement from his/her tennis coach in order to be eligible. Recipient receives a scholarship to attend a camp located within USTA Northern. To apply, visit

      • USTA Northern Entry-Level Tournament Scholarships Award – USTA Northern offers scholarships for youth ages 10-14 who reside within the USTA Northern Section and have a financial hardship that prevents them from playing in USTA Junior Tournaments. Scholarship funds can be used for either Level 7 or Level 8 tournaments. Please note that youth playing high school tennis are not eligible to apply due to MSHSL bylaws. The Scholarship covers the entire cost of the tournament entry fee and will be paid directly to the tournament director. Among items to be considered include financial need and sportsmanship both on and off the court. Contact Sandy Smith at directly for more information.

       • USTA Northern Junior Tennis Scholarships – Juniors ages 10-17 who have a financial hardship are eligible to apply for a USTA Northern Junior Tennis Scholarship. This application form works for the Tony Stingley Diverse Player Scholarship, the Serving Up Love Junior Tennis Scholarship and the new Serving Up Love College Scholarship. To apply, visit

Adult News


2018 Summer USTA League Registration in the Twin Cities Now Open
Registration for 2018 Summer Leagues in the Twin Cities is now open for Adult 18 & Over, Adult 40 & Over, Adult 55 & Over, Adult 65 & Over, Adult 18 & Over Women’s Daytime and Mixed Doubles 18 & Over. Play season is from May 4-July 31. Team registration deadline is Friday, April 6. Looking for a team or more players for your team? Contact Matchline at For more information, contact Kelley Okerman at

Northern Tournament Players Receive Golden Tickets To NTRP Nationals
Congratulations to the following players who received “Golden Tickets” to compete in the inaugural NTRP National Championships. The 18 & Over Championships are April 6-8, at the Surprise Tennis & Racquet Complex in Surprise, Ariz., and the 50 & Over Championships are April 20-22 at Academia Sanchez-Casall Florida in Naples, Fla.


18 3.5 Men – Paul Kotz (St. Paul, Minn.); 18 4.0 Men – Chad LaTour (Edina, Minn.); 18 4.5 Men – Dylan Sperry (Scandia, Minn.); 18 4.0 Women – Mia Robillos (Minneapolis, Minn.); Rachel LaTour (Edina, Minn.); 18 4.5 Women – Kaitlyn Dennis (Minneapolis, Minn.); 50 3.5 Men – Michael Streater (Sunfish Lake, Minn.); 50 4.0 Men – Tim Theisen (Maple Grove, Minn.); 50 3.5 Women – Lisa Bennett (Rapid City, S.D.); 50 4.0 Women – Virginia Kuberski (St. Paul, Minn.).


18 3.5 Men – Derek Fermstad (Burnsville, Minn.)/Lucas Tesh (Lakeville, Minn.); 18 4.0 Men – Derek Beiningen (Mound, Minn.)/Andrew McIntyre (St. Paul, Minn.); 18 3.5 Women – Jeanne Wagner (Rapid City, S.D.)/Carolyn Biven (Rapid City, S.D.); 18 4.0 Women – Yuliya Grassby (Rapid City, S.D.)/Tsende Parkin (Rapid City, S.D.); 50 4.0 Men – Aaron Rosenbery (Lakeville, Minn.)/Matt Bartell (Waconia, Minn.).

USTA Northern Competes At Tri-Level Nationals in Indian Wells
Congratulations to the USTA Northern players who competed at the 2018 Tri-Level National Championships in Indian Wells, Calif., during the BNP Paribas Open. Kyle Syverson (Big Lake, Minn.) and Kris Paul (Edina, Minn.) served as captains of the team.

                3.0 Women – Melonie Sebring, Jenny Kor, Amy Loveless, Tasha Flikeid (Twin Cities)

                3.0 Men – Ray Matthews, Sai Tong (Twin Cities)

                3.5 Women – Nicole Multhauf, Michele Seeman, Ann Hayes, Jenna Southard (Eau Claire)

                3.5 Men – Kyle Syverson, Morgan White, Michael Torres, Brian Reidinger (Twin Cities)

                4.0 Women – Stephanie Barton, Cindy Pfingston (Rapid City)

                4.0 Men – Paul Jilek, Alex Chin, Matt Seiler (Twin Cities)

                4.5 Women – Kristine Paul, Leslie Gale, Astrid Perez (Twin Cities)

                4.5 Men – Oliver Summers, Adam Gustad (Fargo)


Minnesota Wins 15th Straight Tennis On Campus Section Title
The University of Minnesota kept its streak as the only school to ever win a title in tact at 2018 USTA Northern Tennis On Campus Section Championships March 3-4 at Life Time Fitness Lakeville. In the finals, Minnesota defeated Carleton College 28-12 for its 15th consecutive championship. Members of the winning Minnesota team included Meera Damodaran, Sabrina Tang, Andrew Rust, Arend Turner, Zoe Lindbloom, Rafi Barash, Chloe Hall and Aanik Lohani.

Both Minnesota and Carleton now advance to the 2018 Tennis On Campus National Championships April 12-14 at the USTA National Campus in Orlando, Fla. Last year, Minnesota placed fourth at Nationals and was the runner-up in 2015.

This will be Carleton’s third trip to Nationals. Carleton’s roster includes Lynn Daniel, Katie Paasche, Brandon Carrillo, Jon Gillespie, Maddie Bryant, David Galanbos, Rachel Moore and Honus Frohlich.

In the third-place match, North Dakota State defeated Minnesota State Moorhead, who was competing in its first-ever season of Tennis on Campus, 30-6.

Tennis On Campus Award Winners
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.
Ajay Pant Named To PTR Foundation Board; Wins PTR Award
Ajay Pant, of Chaska, Minn., has been appointed to serve on the PTR Foundation Board of Directors. A PTR International Master Professional, who has been a member of the organization for more than 27 years, Pant served as Secretary on the PTR Board of Directors until his term expired in 2017. Pant is the National Tennis Director for Life Time and oversees 28 Life Time tennis clubs and 300 coaches across the United States.

     Pant was also the recipient of the PTR/TIA Commitment to the Industry Award and was honored at the PTR annual awards during the 2018 PTR International Tennis Symposium on Hilton Head Island, S.C. in February.
Jessie Daw; Christine Nickels Named PTR Member of the Year For South Dakota and Minnesota
USTA Northern Board Member Jessie Daw of Sioux Falls, S.D., was named the PTR’s Member of the Year for the state of South Dakota, while Christine Nickels (St. Louis Park, Minn.) of the Fred Wells Tennis & Education Center won the honor for Minnesota. This award is presented to a PTR member who has shown dedication and diligence in promoting and supporting tennis and PTR. Daw and Nickels were honored at the PTR Symposium in Hilton Head Island, S.C.


Bruce Gullikson; Dan Shannon; Scott Sundstrom Honored By USPTA

Bruce Gullikson (Burnsville, Minn.) of Life Time Bloomington South was named the USPTA Northern Division Pro of the Year which recognizes the professional who helps promote tennis and educate the members. Dan Shannon (Eden Prairie, Minn.) won the Lessons for Life Award, while Scott Sundstrom (Mounds View, Minn.) was honored with the Under-30 Award.

Ruby Rott Wins Breaking Barriers Award
Ruby Rott
(St. Paul, Minn.), was awarded the Breaking Barriers Award during the 32nd Annual Minnesota National Girls and Women in Sports Day Celebration at the Minnesota History Center in St. Paul, Minn.


Community Tennis News


Boy & Betty Toy Donate $1 Million To Tennis & Life Camps
Long-time USTA Northern volunteers Boy and Betty Toy of Mounds View, Minn., gave the ultimate gift from the heart, and their wallets, this Valentine’s Day by donating $1 million to Tennis and Life Camps (TLC) at Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, Minn. Their commitment serves as a cornerstone gift of Tennis and Life Camps’ ambitious 40-Love Campaign, which seeks to raise $4 million over the course of 40 months to celebrate the 40th anniversary of one of the nation’s preeminent summer tennis camps. The couple’s gift will establish the Boy and Betty Toy Endowment Fund to support the Wilkinson Legacy Endowment, which seeks to fulfill the dream of late Tennis and Life Camps founder and former Gustavus Men’s Tennis Coach Steve Wilkinson to continually upgrade the College’s first-class tennis facilities by providing for court maintenance, improvements and expansion. The gift will also provide funding to support the Swanson Tennis Center renovation project and supplement the Boy and Betty Toy Tennis and Life Camps Staff Programming and Development Endowment Fund, which the couple created in 2015 with a $50,000 gift.


Save The Date: Next Net Generation On The 9s April 9

Monday, April 9, is the next installment of our "Net Generation on the 9s" initiative as we are dedicating the 9th of every month to getting our providers registered in Net Generation! Save the 9th as the day to start or finish your Net Generation registration so you can take advantage of all the awesome benefits being a part of Net Generation provides including the FREE curriculum, the FREE mobile app and FREE equipment!!! So what is the catch? is all FREE! So why would you not register TODAY? 


Org Member T-Shirt Program Back
Organizational Members … the popular discount t-shirt program is back in 2018. T-shirts are only $6. Orders must be completed online during the following windows:

      • April 23-May 4 (ship May 21)

      • May 21-June 1 (ship June 18)


To order online, please visit For more information, contact Sandy Smith at


In Sports Day With The Gopher Men’s Tennis Team

Smiles and laughter took over the Baseline Tennis Center as 20 kids ages 8-13 participated in the second Gopher Tennis InSports Day on February 17 as the University of Minnesota men faced border-rival Wisconsin. The kids participated in a series of stations while working on their serve and stroke techniques, followed by a question and answer session with Gopher junior Jesse Sprinkel. The kids also had an opportunity to meet with the Gopher players and coaches, stand on the court for the coin toss before the matches and stand beside them during the National Anthem and introduction of the starting lineups. Thank you to Youthprise, InSports, Baseline Tennis Center, the University of Minnesota men’s team and all of the volunteers in making the day a huge success.

USTA Northern Yearbook Available Online
Celebrate the individuals and organizations who were instrumental in USTA Northern being named the 2017 Section of the Year by downloading the 2018 USTA Northern yearbook. Visit and print your version today.

Cardio Tennis Instructor Clinic May 18 At Life Time St. Louis Park

Join us for a beginning Level 1 Cardio Tennis Training course May 18 at Life Time Athletic St. Louis Park.  To register, click here.

USTA Northern Taking Donations For Play It Forward Campaign

With the upcoming high school tennis season, many teams are still looking for new or gently-used tennis equipment. Please bring any donations to the USTA Northern office at 1001 W 98th Street, Suite 101, Bloomington or contact Sandy Smith. If you know of a high school team in need, please complete the following request form.


Do You Have High School Players In Need Of Tennis Equipment?

If you have players who do not have the financial resources to purchase tennis equipment, USTA Northern may be able to help. Please communicate their needs by completing this short form.


Tennis Equipment Grants Up To $300 Available

Replenish your tennis equipment with a buy one, get one free matching equipment grant (up to $300). Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Click here for more information.


Need Prize Packs or Marketing Grants For FREE Community Events?

Prize pack coupons or $100 marketing grants are available to communities hosting free community tennis events, such as a Rally the Family or Tennis Block Party events. Request support by clicking here.


Set Up A Tennis Trainings Today
USTA Northern offers many low-cost tennis training opportunities for teachers, coaches, parents and others interested in growing the game. For more information about bringing a training to your school or community, click here or contact Mya Smith-Dennis at (952) 358-3289.

Register In Our Volunteer Network

      We are always looking for volunteers to help with assorted events, especially those with special skills sets (social media, video, photography). If you have a few hours to spare, we can use you! Fill out a volunteer form today. For additional information, please contact Sandy Smith  at 952-358-3288.

Other USTA Northern Notes, Special Offers and Promotions


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