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65s, 70s Set For Hilton Head Island

November 4, 2014 08:00 AM

Sally Wiseman and her team want to win their division of the USTA South Carolina 70 and Over State League Championship this weekend. But if they don’t, they’ll still have a good time on Hilton Head Island.

That’s because Wiseman’s team members, all of whom are 70 or older, have realized that winning is not everything, especially when you’re older than 70 and still able to play tennis.

“It’s not so much about the tennis, although we’re all very competitive and we want to win,” said Patti McVey, a member of the team. “But the main thing is we just enjoy the camaraderie, we enjoy being together as a team.”

McVey, who is in her 70s, said she was more worried about winning when she was younger. But, she said, “At this age, you just have to enjoy life.”

Rick Rickenbach’s 65 and over team is also looking to enjoy the USTA South Carolina championships this weekend. His Hilton Head Island team will be playing at the 4.0 level. They, too, like to win but also have a good time playing tennis.

“We play together a bunch, once or twice a week, all yearlong,” Rickenbach said.

His team has continued playing at such a high level – 4.0 – because they exercise often, he said. He and his teammates play tennis and get in some cardio and resistance training throughout the week.

The USTA South Carolina 70 and Over State League Championships get started today; the 65 and Over championships start Saturday.

More than 750 league tennis players will visit Hilton Head Island later this week for another USTA South Carolina state league championship in the area.

On Thursday through Monday, players on 93 teams are expected to compete in the USTA South Carolina 65 and Over and 70 and Over State League Championships. The players will vie for 12 championships, six in each age group. And the 65 and over champions will be invited to a USTA Southern Section championship scheduled for next month, said Bonnie Sue Duncan, USTA South Carolina’s state league coordinator for this weekend's championships.

Players from all over the state advanced to the two state league championships by playing well in their local USTA leagues.

The championship matches will be played at six facilities, including Moss Creek, Port Royal, Sea Pines Country Club, South Beach Racquet Club, Palmetto Dunes Centre Court and Palmetto Dunes, the official host site of the championships.

Those same facilities also hosted matches just a few weeks ago when USTA South Carolina brought some 2,300 players to the area for an earlier state league championship.

Play begins Thursday for the 70 and over players and is expected to finish Saturday morning. For the 65 and over group, play begins Saturday and should finish Monday.

The championships are free to attend.