The 2016 Border Battle, the fifth annual competition between USTA Texas and USTA Southwest, took place December 2-4. Hosted by USTA Southwest at the Surprise Tennis & Racquet Center in Surprise, AZ, this competitive event brings together the top twelve (six boys and six girls) 10 and Under Green Ball players from the two Sections for three days of intense training, competition, camaraderie and fun!
Friday’s portion of the event featured on-court training with the top coaches from both Sections and wrapped up with an energizing, fun game with all players.
On-court training continued Saturday morning and the afternoon featured practice matches followed by another action-packed, energetic large group game.
Saturday evening included a USTA Texas team dinner at a nearby restaurant (players only, parents were not invitedJ), to help prepare for Sunday and the start of the official Border Battle competition.
Match introductions took place in a college-style format with the two teams lined up across from each other. Singles matches were announced and players shook hands, exchanged personal “Section themed” gifts and then high-fived their entire team. The match began with doubles followed by singles and mixed doubles.
Both teams showed great spirit and support for their teammates, while demonstrating exemplary sportsmanship and character.
In the end, USTA Texas proved to be too powerful for USTA Southwest and was able to take the title away from the two-time champions.
New in 2016, the six coaches chose four players (two from USTA Southwest and two from USTA Texas) to receive Sportsmanship Awards. Hudson Chappell and India Young received the awards for USTA Texas.
Representing USTA Texas were Willow Dymkowski, Maeva Elizabe, Aubry Hagen, Elyana Okwueze, Sanwi Sarode, India Young, Blake Hagen, Hudson Chappell, Wesley Cotton, Daniel Nasser, and Elliot Wasserman. Sadly, Alberto Castellanos was unable to attend due to a last minute family emergency.
USTA Texas was coached by Luis Ardila, Doug Kruger, and Amanda Shaw.