Monday, March 30, 2015

Streak Breaking Illini Improve To 5-0 In Big Ten

Jared Hiltzik celebrates
March 29, 2015 - Champaign, IL - Fighting Illini tennis player Jared Hiltzik celebrates his victory over OSU's Mikal Torpegaard. In dominating fashion, Illinois defeated Ohio State breaking the Buckeyes' 97-match winning streak, 4-0. Hiltzik took down Torpegaard, 6-2, 6-4. (Photo: PhotoNews Media/Clark Brooks)
If you heard what sounded like elephants rumbling across the prairie stepping on a thousand peanut shells, well, buckeyes to be exact, that was sound of the men’s Fighting Illini Team smashing visiting Ohio State in their Big Ten showdown on Sunday.

The Orange & Blue ended the 97-straight regular season Big Ten winning streak held by the Buckeyes that started back in 2005. And, they did it with absolute inscrutable domination of their opponent.

“It is exciting for us. Ohio State has been a great program for a long period time,” said Illinois head coach Brad Dancer while team celebrated and fan exited the Atkins Tennis Center after the match.  “It’s another good win for our program.”

After the first doubles win from Aron Hiltzik and Ross Guignon, who played a solid set after an early break to win 8-5 against Ohio State’s Hunter Callahan and Chris Diaz, the Illini clinched the doubles point on court three with Farris Gosea and Aleks Vukic defeating Buckeye duo Herkko Pollanen and Mikal Torpegaard also by a score of 8-5.
With well-rehearsed equanimity the Illini leapt into singles play winning the first three matches to remain undefeated at 5-0 in league play and 17-3 overall.

Starting the rout, Aussie native Aleks Vukic, who picked up his 11th win of the season, notched the first singles point of the day taking down OSU’s Ralf Steinbach 6-2, 6-1.

Then it was Fighting Illini’s Jared Hiltzik turn toppling Mikal Torpegaard 6-2, 6-4, in the battle at the #1 position for both teams.

“Jared works his tail off. He’s really driven, incredibly focused,” Dancer said lauding the junior’s work ethic. “His game is becoming more offensive so he is able to do more things to different types of players.”

Not long after the conclusion of Hiltzik’s match, fellow junior Tim Kopinski terminated Buckeye’s Hunter Callahan.

“I get emotional when I talk about him because he is such a special kid,” Dancer said. “After watching the first 10 to 15 minutes, I thought TK should have the opportunity to do the things he wanted to do out there.”

After frustrating his Ohio State opponent the last four games of the second set, Kopinski’s win put a halt to three other matches in progress after knocking off Callahan in two sets, 6-1, 6-3.

“He won a lot points just being calm and executing his pattern,” added Dancer.

The Illini hit the road next weekend with matches at Michigan State on Saturday and then invade Ann Arbor to take on the Michigan Wolverines on Sunday.

Match Results

1. #22 Jared Hiltzik (ILL) def. #32 Mikal Torpegaard (OSU) 6-2, 6-4
2. #64 Farris Gosea (ILL) vs. #44 Chris Diaz (OSU) 6-2, 4-3, unfinished
3. #42 Tim Kopinski (ILL) def. Hunter Callahan (OSU) 6-1, 6-3
4. #52 Aron Hiltzik (ILL) vs. Kevin Metka (OSU) 6-7 (1-7), 2-1, unfinished
5. #50 Aleks Vukic (ILL) def. #83 Ralf Steinbach (OSU) 6-2, 6-1
6. Toshiki Matsuya (ILL) vs. Matt Mendez (OSU) 0-6, 2-5, unfinished 

1. #75 Jared Hiltzik/Tim Kopinski (ILL) vs. #5 Kevin Metka/Ralf Steinbach (OSU) 7-7, unfinished
2. Aron Hiltzik/Ross Guignon (ILL) def. #55 Hunter Callahan/Chris Diaz (OSU) 8-5
3. Farris Gosea/Aleks Vukic (ILL) def. #74 Mikal Torpegaard/Herkko Pollanen (OSU) 8-5

Tim Kopinski hits a forehand
March 29, 2015 - Champaign, IL - Tim Kopinski hits a forehand shot in his match against OSU's Hunter Callahan during first set action. In dominating fashion, Illinois defeated Ohio State breaking the Buckeyes' 97-match winning streak, 4-0. Kopinski picked up the win after defeating Callahan 6-1, 6-3. (Photo: PhotoNews Media/Clark Brooks)

Boone's Victory Deflects Wolverine Sweep

"Boone denied Michigan of the sweep as she took down the Wolverines' Mire Ruder-Hook by a line of 4-6, 6-2, 1-0(10). The win was Boone's sixth singles win on the season. "

Jerricka Boone kept the Illini from being swept with a victory at No. 5 singles against 12th ranked MichiganRecap:
Posted by Fighting Illini Women's Tennis on Sunday, March 29, 2015

Match results:

Singles competition
1. #26 Ronit Yurovsky (UM) def. Melissa Kopinski (ILL) 6-3, 6-1
2. #23 Emina Bektas (UM) def. Alexis Casati (ILL) 6-4, 7-6 (8-6)
3. Sarah Lee (UM) def. Louise Kwong (ILL) 6-2, 6-4
4. Alex Najarian (UM) def. Grace Tapak (ILL) 7-5, 6-4
5. Jerricka Boone (ILL) def. Mira Ruder-Hook (UM) 4-6, 6-2, 1-0 (12-10)
6. Sara Remynse (UM) def. Madie Baillon (ILL) 6-4, 6-4

 Doubles competition
1. #12 Alex Najarian/Emina Bektas (UM) def. Melissa Kopinski/Louise Kwong (ILL) 8-3
2. #58 Sarah Lee/Ronit Yurovsky (UM) vs. Jerricka Boone/Madie Baillon (ILL) 6-3, unfinished
3. Mira Ruder-Hook/Sara Remynse (UM) def. Alexis Casati/Grace Tapak (ILL) 8-1

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Heartbreaker Sinks Illini Women At Michigan State

It was close but no 'W' for the Illini women's tennis team in their bid to knock down Michigan State a peg in their Big Ten match on Saturday. Yet to record a conference win, Illinois battled ferociously but could not pull out the needed victory to upset the Spartans in the 4-3 loss. The Orange & Blue drop to 0-5 in league (7-8 overall) while Michigan State's record remains unblemished at 5-0.

The Fighting Illini nearly upset Michigan State today but fell just short in the 4-3 loss.Recap:
Posted by Fighting Illini Women's Tennis on Saturday, March 28, 2015

Match Results:

Singles competition
1. Erin Faulkner (MSU) def. Alexis Casati (ILL) 6-1, 7-6 (7-3)
2. Melissa Kopinski (ILL) def. Lexi Baylis (MSU) 6-4, 6-3
3. Louise Kwong (ILL) def. Aslina Chua (MSU) 6-2, 6-0
4. Catherine Parenteau (MSU) def. Grace Tapak (ILL) 7-6 (7-5), 1-6, 6-4
5. Athena Trouillot (MSU) def. Jerricka Boone (ILL) 7-5, 1-6, 6-4
6. Emily Meyers (MSU) def. Julia Jamieson (ILL) 6-0, 6-2

Doubles competition
1. Melissa Kopinski/Louise Kwong (ILL) def. Erin Faulkner/Athena Trouillot (MSU) 8-3
2. Jerricka Boone/Madie Baillon (ILL) def. Allie Baer/Catherine Parenteau (MSU) 8-1
3. Lexi Baylis/Emily Meyers (MSU) vs. Alexis Casati/Grace Tapak (ILL) 3-7, unfinished

Saturday, March 28, 2015

#3 Ranked Illini Too Hot For Nittany Lions

Jared Hiltzik rushes forward
Illini's Jared Hiltzik rushes forward in his match against Nittany Lions' Alex Fennell to return a drop shot Hiltzik downed Fennell in two sets, 6-1, 7-5.
It was chilly outside, but the #3 ranked Illinois tennis team was red hot inside Atkins Tennis Center against visiting Penn State in Big 10 action Friday afternoon.

Taking the doubles point in dominating fashion with wins from Jared Hiltzik/Tim Kopinski and
Aleks Vukic/Farris Gosea, the Illini powered their way to victory picking up victories in five of the six singles matches.

"The doubles was a little bit better today. I thought we played with a little bit more purpose. That is going to be important for us as we go forward," said head coach Brad Dancer in his post-game interview. "It is a little bit easier playing with purpose."

Penn State's only victory of the day was in the #2 singles match between Leo Stakhovsky and Farris Gosea. Liberally depositing drop shots on both sides of the court, Stakhovsky survived a third-set tie break to squeak by Gosea, 6-3, 4-6, 10-7. 

While the Nittany Lions drop to 9-11 on the season and 1-3 in league play, the Illini dropped one spot to #3 nationally but improved their overall record to 16-3 and remain undefeated in Big10 play.

Dancer and the Illini won't have too many hours to enjoy the victory. The team will host Ohio State at noon on Sunday.

 "Our guys love tennis. They love being a part of it," Dancer said about his team knowing they will be ready for the Buckeyes. "They are really excited about Sunday."

Final Match Results:

1. #22 Jared Hiltzik (ILL) def. Alex Fennell (PSU) 6-1, 7-5
2. Leo Stakhovsky (PSU) def. #64 Farris Gosea (ILL) 6-3, 4-6, 10-7
3. #42 Tim Kopinski (ILL) def. Matt Barry (PSU) 6-2, 6-3
4. #52 Aron Hiltzik (ILL) def. Thomas Hanzlik (PSU) 6-1, 6-2
5. #50 Aleks Vukic (ILL) def. Aws Laaribi (PSU) 6-3, 6-1
6. Toshiki Matsuya (ILL) def. Roman Trkulja (PSU) 7-6 (0-7), 6-4 

1. #75 Jared Hiltzik/Tim Kopinski (ILL) def. Leo Stakhovsky/Aws Laaribi (PSU) 8-4
2. Ross Guignon/Aron Hiltzik (ILL) vs. Alex Fennell/ChristianLutschaunig (PSU) 6-3, unfinished
3. Aleks Vukic/Farris Gosea (ILL) def. Matt Barry/Roman Trkulja (PSU) 8-1

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Park District Sunday Singles League Ranking

Here is the latest ranking for the Sunday Singles League after eight rounds of play courtesy of Champaign Park District.

Current Standings
1) Jason Heimbaugh (57/79 72%)
2) Laura Sonnichsen (29/41 71%)
3) Jim Runyan (40/64 63%)
4) Yogeshkumar Patel (22/41 54%)
5) Wendy Barker (9/18 50%)
6) Elizabeth Shack (19/46 41%)
7) Cathy Prendergast (17/43 40%)
8) Patti Hicks (4/62 7%)

For Gerald Abbott It Is Good To Be King

It is good to be king. At least so far for Gerald Abbott who is sitting at the top of the Champaign Park District's Bronze League standings at 3-0.  After a tedious first round match against former MIT Track and Field star Prince Imoukhuede, Abbot managed to manhandle challengers Chuck Nerone and Carl Jockusch giving up just to one game in each of the two-setters.

Nerone, with a 4-1 record and two matches left to play, sits currently in second place.

In third place, Tim McAlpin at 3-1 looks to finish the CPD spring session with a respectable record and still is a threat to Abbot for the #1 spot if he can pull off another pair of upsets, with or without tie-breaks, as he did over Imoukhuede and Joe Grant in weeks one and two.  With his loss to Nerone after a 6-4, 6-2, battle, a win for McAlpin over Abbott could create a chaotic frenzy for first place and the right to ascend to the Bronze League. 

Below are the current Champaign Park District standings and match scores.

Current Standing
1) Gerald Abbott (3 wins-0 losses)
2) Charles Nerone (4-1)
3) Tim McAlpin (3-1)
Tied for 4) Carl Jockusch (2-2)
Tied for 4) Joe Grant (1-1)
6) Princess Imoukhuede (1-2)
7) Jeremy Michelson (0-3)
8) Brad Blumenshine (0-4)

Round 1 Scores
McAlpin defeated Grant 5-7, 6-3, 1-0(5)
Nerone defeated Jockusch 4-6, 7-5, 1-0(8)
Abbott defeated Imoukhuede 6-2, 6-4
Blumenshine needs to play Michelson

Round 2 Scores
Jockusch defeated Blumenshine 6-3, 6-0
McAlpin defeated Imoukhuede 5-7, 6-1, 1-0(9)
Abbott defeated Nerone 6-1, 6-0
Grant defeated Michelson 6-1, 6-1

Round 3 Scores
Imoukhuede needs to play Grant
Abbott needs to play Blumenshine
Nerone defeated McAlpin 6-4, 6-2
Jockusch defeated Michelson 6-1, 6-0

Round 4 Scores
Abbott defeated Jockusch 6-1, 6-0
Nerone needs to play Grant
McAlpin defeated Blumenshine 6-3, 6-3
Imoukhuede needs to play Michelson

Round 6 Scores
Imoukhuede defeated Blumenshine 6-1, 7-5
Nerone defeated Michelson 6-4, 6-0

Round 7 Scores
Nerone defeated Blumenshine 6-2, 6-1

Reversing The Call

We came across this question about tennis rules from Champaign-Urbana's very own Mark Jones.

Posted by Tennis Champaign on Thursday, March 26, 2015

O'Brien Leads CPD Tennis Silver League

With around 75% of the scheduled matches for Champaign Park District's Silver level tennis league played, former Centennial High School player Daniel O'Brien leads the Champaign Park District Silver League tennis standing with a 3-0 record. He is one of three players yet to record a league loss.

Playing just two of his four scheduled matches to date, Mark Jones, from Pesotum, also has a perfect record sitting at 2-0. His two unscheduled matches are against Silver League journeymen Randy Vanderwerf and Charles Sikora, ranked #3 and #4 respectively in this week's standings.

Below are the current standings and match scores for CPD's Silver League.

 Current Standings
1) Daniel O’Brien (3 wins-0 losses)
2) Mark Jones (2-0)
3) Randy Vanderwerf (1-0)
4) Charles Sikora (2-1)
5) Tom Wilson (1-2)
6) Steve Friend (0-1)
7) Michael Bantz (0-2)
8) Fiona Ngo (0-3)

Round 1 Scores
Vanderwerf defeated Ngo 6-3, 6-4
O’Brien defeated Wilson 6-2, 6-2
Jones needs to play Sikora
Friend needs to play Bantz

Round 2 Scores
Wilson needs to play Friend
Jones defeated Ngo 6-0, 6-1
O’Brien defeated Sikora 6-4, 6-4
Vanderwerf needs to play Bantz

Round 3 Scores
Jones needs to play Vanderwerf
Sikora defeated Friend 6-3, 6-3
O’Brien defeated Ngo 6-4, 6-2
Wilson defeated Bantz 6-3, 6-3

Round 4 Scores
Sikora defeated Wilson 6-4, 7-5
O’Brien needs to play Vanderwerf
Ngo needs to play Friend
Jones defeated Bantz 6-2, 7-6(?)

Gold League Singles Scores And Standings

Todd Mayfield keeps his undefeated Gold League streak alive this week after defeating Wyatt Martin, 6-1, 6-4, this week. Enjoying a perfect 4-0 start, Mayfield posted wins over Tim Brozenec, Rich Thompson and Jim Wilson earlier in the season in the Champaign Park District's elite tennis league.

Thompson, who is currently in second place with a 3-1 record, fell 6-4, 6-3 to Mayfield in the previous week of league play.  

Round 4 ends with at two-way tie between Wilson and Young Kim, both nursing 2-1 records. Kim's loss was to Wilson in their Round 3 meeting.

Below are the current Champaign Park District Gold League standings and scores.

Current Standings
1) Todd Mayfield (4 wins-0 losses)
2) Rich Thompson (3-1)
Tied for 3) Jim Wilson (2-1)
Tied for 3) Young Kim (2-1)
5) Wyatt Martin (2-2)
6) Tim Brozenec (1-2)
7) Dan Maloney (0-3)
8) Andy Wilke (0-4)

Round 1 Scores
Kim defeated Wilke 6-0, 6-0
Martin defeated Brozenec 6-7(4), 6-2, 1-0(7)
Mayfield defeated Wilson 6-4, 3-6, 1-0(6)
Thompson defeated Maloney 6-3, 6-1

Round 2 Scores
Thompson defeated Martin 6-2, 7-6(0)
Wilson defeated Wilke 6-4, 1-6, 1-0(8)
Mayfield defeated Brozenec 6-4, 6-3
Kim defeated Maloney 6-1, 6-0

Round 3 Scores
Wilson defeated Kim 3-6, 7-5, 1-0(7)
Mayfield defeated Thompson 6-4, 6-3
Brozenec defeated Wilke 6-2, 7-6(4)
Martin defeated Maloney 7-5, 6-0

Round 4 Scores
Mayfield defeated Martin 6-1, 6-4
Brozenec needs to play Kim
Thompson defeated Wilke 6-1, 6-4
Wilson needs to play Maloney

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Illini Men Host Penn and Ohio This Weekend

After a month break from competing inside Atkins, the #3 #Illini return home for two #B1G matches this weekend!

Posted by Fighting Illini Men's Tennis on Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Illini Tennis Stung In Close Road Loss

Melissa Kopinski and Louise Kwong teamed up to win their seventh doubles contest of the season in the Fighting Illini's 4-3 loss to UC Santa Barbara on Tuesday. The Illinois womens' squad moves to 7-6 on the season after the road loss in Santa Barbara, California.

The Fighting Illini fell to UC Santa Barbara 4-3 earlier todayRecap:

Posted by Fighting Illini Women's Tennis on Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Monday, March 23, 2015

Champaign County Has 110 Tennis Courts

You wouldn't necessarily think of our area as a haven for competitive and recreational tennis. With the majority of county not used for housing or business dedicated to agriculture, in compiling a list of all the available courts around and in Champaign-Urbana it was a surprise to learn the bodacious number of courts available for everyone from casual players to fanatics to play or practice.

Unless I missed a few locations, there are 110 tennis courts in Champaign County. All but 12, which are split evenly between the Dodds Tennis Center and the University of Illinois' Atkins Tennis Center with six each, are outdoors courts. There are 13 courts at five locations that are private available to members or residents only.

Forty-one of the available courts are on the University of Illinois campus at three locations while across town Parkland College, which no longer supports a collegiate team, has six courts on their campus for recreational use. Add those to the 13 privately owned courts and that leaves 56 courts within the county to polish your net rushing skills or bomb corners with righteous forehands.

Not counting the University of Illinois and private facilities in the mix, there are 39 courts in the county where you can play tennis at night. With the exception of Lindsey Courts in Champaign's Centennial Park, the lights stay on until 10pm. It is an unconfirmed rumored that the lights at Lindsey remain on until midnight.

During weekday evenings after work if you are looking for a place to play, the places when looking for an open court to play is either at the Atkins Tennis Center in Urbana or Spalding Park in Champaign. Reservations are required at Atkins so call ahead. When school is in session the center closes at 10pm. During the summer months the courts cease operations at 9pm.

Spalding Park, which is lit until 10pm, is first come, first to play and generally has one or two open courts. Both Hessel Park and Lindsey Courts are used by the Champaign Park District, who have court priority for their tennis programs.

Can't find a partner to play or haven't received a response to your available to play post on Tennis Champaign's Facebook group yet? There are four locations with walls to work on your strokes. On campus, the Outdoor Center located on the corner of First and Gregory and the courts at Illini Grove have small backboards to hit against. In Urbana, Blair Park a small area, but may not be available if high school matches are in progress or someone is already playing on the court it occupies. There is a wall at Hessel Park with its own area large enough to practice ripping baseline zingers.

Below you will find our complete listing of tennis courts in Champaign County. Did we leave one out? If so, post the location in the comments section at the end of the post and we'll add it.

Atkins Tennis Center & Khan Outdoor Center
1410 West St. Mary's Road, Urbana, IL 61801
Ownership: University of Illinois
Courts: 20 Outdoor/ 6 Indoor • Lit Courts: 20 • Wall: No


Dodds Tennis Center
2802 Farber Drive, Champaign, IL
Ownership: Champaign Park District
Courts: 6 • Indoor • Wall: No


Lindsey Courts
2212 Sangamon Dr, Champaign, IL 61821
Ownership: Public
Courts: 8 • Lit Courts: 8 • Wall: No


ONE North
1699 Melrose Valley Ct, Urbana, IL
Ownership: Private
Courts: 2 • Lit Courts: 2 • Wall: No


ONE South
1321 N Lincoln Ave, Urbana, IL
Ownership: Private
Courts: 2 • Lit Courts: 2 • Wall: No


Wabash Park
400 East Wabash, Rantoul, IL
Ownership: Public
Courts: 6 • Lit Courts: Yes • Wall: No


King Park
1102 N Harvey St, Urbana, IL
Ownership: Public
Courts: 2 • Lit Courts: None • Wall: No


Spalding Park
700 W Harvard St, Champaign, IL
Ownership: Public
Courts: 4 • Lit Courts: 4 • Wall: No


Eisner Park
1353 W Church St, Champaign, IL
Ownership: Public
Courts: 1 • Lit Courts: None • Wall: No


St. Joseph
204 South Elm Street, St. Joseph, IL
Ownership: Public
Courts: 1 • Lit Courts: None • Wall: No


Victory Park
206 S Lynn St, Urbana, IL
Ownership: Public
Courts: 1 • Lit Courts: None • Wall: No


Clark Park
898 S McKinley Ave, Champaign, IL
Ownership: Public
Courts: 2 • Lit Courts: None • Wall: No


Hessel Park
1307 Grandview Dr, Champaign, IL
Ownership: Public
Courts: 4 • Lit Courts: 4 • Wall: Yes


Parkland College Courts
2400 W. Bradley Ave, Champaign, IL
Ownership: Parkland College
Courts: 6 • Lit Courts: None • Wall: No


Blair Park
1402 S Vine St, Urbana, IL
Ownership: Urbana Park District
Courts: 7 • Lit Courts: 4 • Wall: Yes


Westside Park
412 West Holden St, Tolono, IL
Ownership: Public
Courts: 2 • Lit Courts: Yes • Wall: No


Larson Park
999 E Mchenry St, Urbana, IL
Ownership: Public
Courts: 2 • Lit Courts: None • Wall: No


Morrissey Park
1201 Plymouth Dr, Champaign, IL
Ownership: Public
Courts: 4 • Lit Courts: None • Wall: No


Illini Grove
West Pennsylvania Ave, Urbana, IL
Ownership: University of Illinois
Courts: 9 • Lit Courts: 9 • Wall: Yes


Outdoor Center
Corner of First & Gregory
Ownership: University of Illinois
Courts: 6 • Lit Courts: 6 • Wall: Yes


Urbana Country Club
100 Country Club Road, Urbana, IL
Ownership: Private
Courts: 3 • Lit Courts: 3 • Wall: No


Champaign Country Club
1211 South Prospect, Champaign, IL
Ownership: Private
Courts: 3 • Lit Courts: 3 • Wall: No


Lincolnshire Fields
2000 Byrneburk Dr, Champaign, IL
Ownership: Private
Courts: 3 • Lit Courts: None • Wall: No

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Illini Women Fall 6-1 To Northwestern On The Road

"My top three singles players have been fighting their tails off and playing good ball," shared head coach Michelle Dasso. "We are at the halfway point in our season and need to find a way to get everyone fully engaged and playing with a sense of urgency. I feel a little redundant saying this but the doubles point is key."

Friday, March 20, 2015

Tennis Champaign Facebook Group Open

One of the first suggestions to help improve this site as a resource came from Atkins Tennis Center head pro Brandon Lenfert. His suggestion was for the site to provide a way for new and experienced players to find hitting partners. He also expressed that it would be cool for players wanting to form small groups for lessons could post messages for those who might be interested.

Naturally, I thought this was a great idea!

When I first started playing tennis five years ago, one of the biggest challenges was finding other people my level or slightly better to play and work toward improving. I scoured craigslist and the bulletin board at Dodds Tennis Center. I handed out contact info to people I met at the park district workouts and to players on adjacent courts who were interested when out hitting with other partners.

Today, I created a Facebook group page called Tennis Champaign. Currently it is an open group for tennis players in Champaign-Urbana and the surrounding communities to find players to hit and drill with or for match play. Doubles or singles, feel free to post your requests. Players or instructors looking to form group lessons are encourage to post details to fill open spots.

I added one more possible use as well. With the low numbers in the Mens' 3.5 USTA league last year and knowing that a few teams are looking for players for the upcoming season, team captains seeking players for their team are welcome to use the group to recruit players.

Posts concerning upcoming area and state tournaments, tennis social events, leagues, area clinics and classes are also welcomed. At this time, post selling items or offering services (ie: stringing) will not be allowed and will be deleted.

All posts made to the group page will be posted to this site and possibly tweeted via the @ChampaignTennis twitter account. 

Thanks, Brandon! Do you have an idea that will make Tennis Champaign a wonderful resource? Email your idea to me at cu.photonews @ (remove the spaces around the @ symbol) or added it to the comment section below.

~ Clark


Thursday, March 19, 2015

Illini Women Head Into Spring Break Campaign Ranked #54

"After opening the season 1-1 in singles competition, Melissa Kopinski won her next six of her next seven matches to climb to 7-2 on the spring. Louise Kwong has opened her sophomore campaign with a 6-4 record, including a win at number one singles. Grace Tapak, Jerricka Boone and Alexis Casati have each recorded five wins so far this season."

Champaign Park District To Offer Stroke Clinics In April

The Champaign Park District will offer two specialty clinics next month at their Dodds Tennis Center. The clinics are designed for tennis players of all levels to refine or learn a particular stroke under the supervision of a seasoned professional instructor. The upcoming clinics announced with feature serve and volley on April 11th and overhead shots on April 25th. Details are below. For more information or contact Yuri Sohn for details at or call (217) 352-6044.

All Ages & Levels Learn and fine tune a specialty stroke in detail with a pro. Please note that stroke topic may change depending on the needs of the participants.

Topic: Serve and Volley
Date: 4/11/15 Day: Saturday Time: 11am-12noon
Location: Dodds Tennis Center
Member Fee: $10/visit Guest Fee: $13/visit

All Ages & Levels Learn and fine tune a basic stroke in detail with a pro.
Topic: Overhead
Date: 4/25/15 Day: Saturday Time: 11am-12noon
Location: Dodds Tennis Center
Member Fee: $10/visit Guest Fee: $13/visit

Throwback Thursday: Amer Delic Pumped To Win

Amer Delic pumps his fist

Urbana, IL - Former Illini tennis star Amer Delic pumps his fist at loyal fans after winning his semifinal match at the 2010 JSM Challenger on November 20th. Delic, making a comeback after knee surgery, went on to defeat Jesse Witten in three sets 6-3, 3-6, 4-6 for the title at the University of Illinois' Atkins Tennis Center. (Photo: PhotoNews Media/Clark Brooks)

‪‎Illini‬ Aron Hiltzik Named the Big Ten Tennis Athlete of the Week

Join The Champaign-Urbana Tennis Ladder

Are you looking for tennis partners in Champaign-Urbana to play? Join the C-U Ladder today!

First organized in January of 2012, the Ladder is not only a great way to meet new players but to polish and hone your tennis skills against players with variety of skills, experience and ability. This adult league provides a pool of 20+ players for friendly, competitive tennis play. You can play as much or as little as you like. The more you play the faster you rise to the top.

It works like this: Players are listed in order like rungs on a ladder. The newest player to the ladder starts at the bottom and work their way up by winning matches. Players can only challenge someone one or more rungs above them to a match. If the challenger wins, she or he takes the spot on the ladder of the person they defeated. The loser drops one rung as do all the players below him or her.

There are no fees or membership dues. You and your opponent decide where and when you play, then report the final score to the ladder administrator. The only cost is bore by the challenger who brings a can of new balls to the match. If the match is held indoors both players split court fees.

Want to learn more about the ladder or start playing today? Contact Brant Houston at for details.