Photo of Roy Emerson by Roger Jackson/Central Press/Getty Images)


A long while ago some British singers told us “All you need is love.”
In this sometimes harsh world, it’s still true. And may be more than ever.

One domain where people have long showed their love is welcoming a child into their family through adoption. One parent who did said, “They may not have my eyes, they may not have my smile, but they have my heart.”

The bottom line is that every child deserves a home and love. And fate is involved in all of this. Actress Nicole Kidman said, “Somehow destiny comes into play. These children end up with you and you end up with them. It’s something quite magical.”

Also quite magical is the 57-year run of the Roy Emerson Adoption Guild Classic, which is held on three days over Memorial Day weekend. A labor of love put on by the guild in support of Holy Family Services, the tennis happening is at Newport Beach’s beautiful Palisades Tennis Club and The Racquet Club of Irvine. The always-fun event has $15,000 in prize money and a wide range of singles and doubles competitions for different levels and age groups, including a new 50 and Over division. Plus, there will be the always wonderful talk by two-time Wimbledon champ Roy Emerson, as well as a lovely champagne brunch and raffle. To enter go to



SoCal players won gold balls in every age division from 35 to 90, and several family events. Twenty SoCal players represented the US internationally, with half winning medals. At the top of this pyramid stand Roz King (see Player of the Year) and Tina Karwasky, winner of eight national titles, including a Gold Slam in 65 singles. Karwasky lost a mere 20 games in winning all 12 singles matches she contested en route to the Slam. She also won the 65 Hard, Indoor and Grass doubles and the 60 Grass doubles.

Oren Motevassel (Rancho Mirage), dominated men’s 50 singles nationally, winning the the Clay, Hard and Indoors. He was a doubles finalist twice. Mike Fedderly (Palm Desert) and Bill Moss (Malibu) took different approaches to winning gold medals at the ITF World Championships. Moss played No. 2 on the USA Austria Cup (M55) that won the ITF Worlds. Fedderly missed the Cup but won the 128-player individual singles and was a doubles finalist with Mike Tammen (OR). Fedderly won gold balls at the 55 Hard and Clay in doubles (with Tammen). Lloyd Goldwater (Pacific Palisades) won the Hard Courts, beating Lester Sack (LA), though Sack turned the tables in the Clay final. He was an Indoors singles finalist. Saul Snyder (San Diego) won the 85 Hard singles and doubles (with Roger Hing, Fountain Valley).

For Millie Yablonicky (Encinitas) it was a year of firsts: first Cup team; first time winning two gold balls in a year (the 35 Hard with Mariel de Young (Carlsbad) and 40 Indoor doubles); first year in the 40s. Dina McBride (Stevenson Ranch) won the 45 Hard singles only nine months after severing her achilles in the final of the 40 Hard Courts, and was a finalist in 35 Hard doubles and Mother/Son Hard (played in May). Ros Nideffer (San Diego), 57, won the 50 Hard singles and doubles (with Debbie Spence-Nasim, Carlsbad) and led the US to runner-up in the Maria Bueno Cup (W50)i. She was a Worlds finalist in 50 singles and doubles (with Gretchen Rush, TX).

Nathalie Herreman-Bagby (Pacific Palisades) won her first gold ball, with Alissa Finerman (Santa Monica) at the 50 Indoors. Finerman teamed with Ralph Finerman (Pacific Palisades) to win the Father/Daughter 80+ Hard for the second time, over Carolyn Nichols (Rancho Santa Fe)/Graydon Nichols (NorCal). Nichols won the Clay and Indoors doubles (with Susan Wright, CO) and Hard with San Diego’s Robin Harris and was a Hard and Clay singles finalist. Suella Steel (La Jolla) won two singles and three doubles gold balls in the 75s (singles and doubles at the Hard (with Charleen Hillebrand, Harbor City); singles and doubles at the Indoors and the Clay doubles (with Hillebrand). She captained the winning USA Queens Cup (W75) and won a silver (with Hillebrand) and bronze (with Karel Placek, Del Mar).

The Settles family (Claremont) was hugely successful: Kathy and Christian won the Mother/Son Hard while Paul and Kathy won the 100+ Husband/Wife at the Hard, Indoor and Grass.

GOLD BALLS: Women: Karwasky (8); King (6); Steel (5); Nichols (3); Hillebrand (3); Hiromi Sasano (La Mesa, 2); Yablonicky (2); Nideffer (2); Finerman; de Young; Harris; McBride; Kristina Jong (Santa Monica); Michelle Saunders (Solvang); Spence-Nasim; Herreman-Bagby; Tracey Thompson (San Diego); Cathie Anderson (Del Mar); Liane Bryson (San Diego); Amy Alcini (Malibu)

Men: Motevassel (3); Neel Grover (Laguna Beach) (3); Art Hernandez (Huntington Beach) (3); Fedderly (2); Snyder (2); Arnold Pompan (Encino) (2); Peter/Colter Smith (Long Beach) (2); Roberto Rodriguez (Van Nuys); Rick Leach (Newport Beach); Kevin Kearney (Irvine); Glen Petrovic (Foothill Rancho); Randall Berg (Bemuda Dunes); Dean Corley (Aliso Viejo); Leland Houseman (San Diego); Lloyd Goldwater (Pacific Palisades); Lenny Lindborg (Laguna Beach) ; Jerry Robinson (San Juan Capistrano); Bill Nyhan (La Jolla); Hing; Ross Hessler (Mission Viejo); Jon Tyrell (Sierra Madre); Patrick Crow (Lake Forest); Robert Hinkel (Newport Beach); Matthew Sah/Po Seng Tah (San Diego)

FAMILY: Kathy Settles (4); Paul Settles (3); Ghia Godfree/Linda Lyke (Los Angeles, 2); Bruce/Sabrina Man Son Hing (Calabasas); Ralph Finerman; Alissa Finerman; Christian Settles; Andrew/Ann Stanley (Lake Sherwood); William Carnevale (Rancho Mirage); Bradley Seiple (Rancho Mirage)

MIXED: Crow; Jennifer Lyons (San Clemente); Frank Zebot (Laguna Beach); Claudia Giacomini (Palm Desert)

CUP TEAM MEMBERS: M35, Italia Cup: Ross Duncan (Laguna Beach), Francois Castejon (San Diego), Marcio Pepe (Laguna Hills); M40, Tony Trabert Cup: Michael Chang (Anaheim); M50, Fred Perry Cup: Hernandez, Leach; M55, Austria Cup: Moss; M70, Jack Crawford Cup: Corley; W40: Yablonicky, Tracie Currie (Ventura); W45: Jennifer Dawson (Carlsbad), Spence-Nasim; W50, Maria Bueno Cup: Nideffer, Herreman-Bagby; W55, Maureen Connolly Cup: Thompson; W65, Kitty Godfree Cup: Karwasky; W75: Queens’ Cup: Anderson, Hillebrand, Steel; W80, Doris Hart Cup: King

INDIVIDUAL WORLD MEDALISTS: Gold: King, Fedderly; Silver: Nideffer (2), Hillebrand, Steel, Rollin Rhone (Los Angeles), Fedderly; Bronze: Karwasky, Hillebrand, Steel, Andrew Stanley; Sheila Palmer (La Jolla); Placek; King,

Six gold balls, two world gold medals…what a year Roz King had! The vibrant nearly-80-year-old described 2017 as a year where everything fell into place. King won the singles and doubles at the three USTA nationals she played, the Clay, Hard and Indoors, and won the ITF World Team and Individual Championships. She beat her good friend and doubles partner Dori DeVries (Reno) in the final of the Clay, Hard and Worlds.

King compares her year to 2013 when won the ITF 75 singles, saying she has a “better understanding of the game, of what I need to do” and more “belief.” Her goal is to be playing into her 90s. In between tourneys, she drills frequently and plays league doubles. When not playing tennis, she plays bridge competitively and gardens.





NorCal players traveled far and wide in 2017. Dori DeVries returned to NorCal (Reno) from SoCal, scooping up three gold balls and a gold medal (see Player of the Year). Betty Cookson (San Mateo), 95, and playing with a new knee, won all three 90s doubles crowns (with Rita Price, CO) and took a bronze at the 85 clay. Betty is a living example of tennis being a lifetime sport.

WOMEN: Tracy Houk (Montara), successfully defended her 55 Hard singles title in La Quinta. She started her desert success in January, winning the Asics 55s singles crown. Judy Newman (Scotts Valley) won the 55 Hard doubles crown (with Gayle Prejean, TX) and reached the Grass final (with Mary Dailey, FL). At the ITF World Championships, Newman was a 55 doubles bronze medalist (with Vicki Buholz, TX).

Other NorCal women excelled at doubles: Pam Cooke (Alamo) and Kim Lackey (Clayton) won the 55 Clay and were 45 Clay finalists. Erika Smith (Oakland) won the 50 Grass and a 50 Indoors bronze ball (with Mary Dailey, FL). She won a 50 mixed bronze medal at the ITF Worlds. Mary Beth Williams (Napa)/Alisa Yee (San Francisco) were 35 grass finalists. Andrea Barnes (Palo Alto) and Leslie Murveit (Portola Valley) were 60 Indoors finalists. Murveit was part of the gold medal Alice Marble Cup (W60) team in Miami. Kathy Barnes (San Jose) finished with silver in singles and doubles at the 65 Hard (with Sue Bramlette, TX) and 65 Indoors (with Molly Hahn, MA).

MEN: Daniel Grossman (Tiburon) won his first world title in Orlando, teaming with Andrew Rae (Australia) in the men’s 65. The next week Grossman and Rae won the Clay 65 doubles. Internationally Grossman won 55 doubles titles with Polo Cowan (Tiburon) in Spain, Italy, Peru and Chile and ended the year ranked No. 2 in the world in 65 doubles. Cowan is No. 2 in 55 doubles.

Doug Ditmer (San Ramon) teamed with Randy Berg (SoCal) to win the 60 Hard. At the World Championships he earned a bronze medal (with SoCal’s Andrew Stanley) in 60 doubles. 

Peter O’Brien (Walnut Creek) was a surprise singles finalist at the 75 Clay. Miguel Mejia (Salinas) reached the 85 Indoor singles and doubles finals (with Martin Silverman, San Rafael). 

MIXED: Kurt Chan (Gold River) dominated the two nationals he played in 60 mixed, the Hard, with Susan Wright (CO) and the Indoors, with Jennifer Shorr (WA) against Wright and her partner. Linda Bucklin (Mill Valley) won the 70 Hard with Frank Zebot (SoCal). 

FAMILY: Charlie Hoeveler (Ross) had his usual success in Super Senior (70+) Father/Son. This year he won the Hard with Justin (San Francisco) and was a grass finalist with Charles (Ross). Also successful in family events were Brent Abel/Mai Ichikawa-Abel (Moraga), taking home silver balls from the Clay and Grass in Husband/Wife 100+. Mai also won bronze at the 40 Indoors doubles. Graydon Nichols (Hanford) (with Carolyn Nichols, SoCal) finished second at the 80+ Father/Daughter. Graydon is 92. He also won the Asics 90 singles.

INTERNATIONAL TEAMS: The following players participated on USA Cup teams: Men’s 45, Dubler Cup: Dana Gill (San Jose); Curtis Dunn (San Francisco); Women’s 40, Young Cup: Fanny Gamble (San Rafael); Women’s 55, Maureen Connolly Cup: Newman; Houk; Women’s 60, Alice Marble Cup: Leslie Murveit; Women’s 80, Doris Hart Cup: DeVries.

GOLD BALL: DeVries (3); Cookson (3); Chan (2); Tyler Browne (Walnut Creek) (2); Newman; Smith; Cooke; Lackey; Ditmer; Dan Grossman; Bucklin; Houk; Charlie Hoeveler; Justin Hoeveler; Jeff Greenwald (Poway) Howard Giles (Napa); Dean Nguyen (Napa); Nicholas Brunner (SF)

SILVER BALL: Barnes (4); DeVries (3) Abel/Ichikawa Abel (2); O’Brien; Charlie Hoeveler; Charles Hoeveler; Nichols; Cooke; Lackey; Newman; Murveit/Barnes; Williams/Yee; Ken Robinson (San Carlos); Ditmer; Morgan Shepherd (Albany); David Barrows/Brenden Barrows (San Mateo)

BRONZE BALL: Ichikawa-Abel (2); DeVries (2); Smith; Murveit; O’Brien; Stephen Rondfeldt (Berkeley); B.J. Miller (Oakland); Greg Kohls (Calistoga); Francesca LaO (SF); Barnes; Abel; Bryce Kristal/Marilyn Morell Kristal (Pleasanton); Leonard Wiedenmeyer (Castro Valley); Greg/Pam Shepherd (Napa); Jeff Greenwald (San Anselmo); Gill; Julia Silveria (Orinda); Yee; Patti Boyer (Lotus)


Dori DeVries is 80 years young. She won a Gold Slam in 2016 (all four 80s national championships in singles) and followed it up in 2017 by winning three gold balls (including the Grass singles) and reaching the finals at the Hard and Clay, where she was thwarted by her friend and doubles partner, Roz King (San Diego). For DeVries, 2017’s highlight was helping the USA win the Doris Hart Cup. She won her singles point and the deciding doubles with King to clinch the title.

DeVries is motivated by a pure love of hitting the ball, and the fun and camaraderie she experiences with her tennis friends. On a typical day she spends an hour exercising before hitting the court. And after a tournament? She has a margarita, and King a martini.



Veteran Stars and Contemporary Pros Come Together At a Clinic and Benefit to Raise Money for Academy

The historic Jack Kramer Club in Rolling Hills Estates plays host to this year’s Los Angeles Tennis Bash on the morning of Saturday, December 9, with a series of clinics and games for juniors and adults to raise money for SoCal-based First Break Academy.

Both veteran Hall of Fame stars and top-ranked contemporary names will be on hand for the event. The lineup includes 22-time Grand Slam champion and First Break benefactor Pam Shriver, and two-time US Open women’s singles champion and former world No. 1 Tracy Austin, as well as current WTA pros Shelby Rogers and Nicole Gibbs and current ATP pros Steve Johnson, Jared Donaldson, Taylor Fritz and Bradley Klahn. Other players involved: Wimbledon mixed doubles champion Kimberly Po, former top 10 doubles player and current Kramer Club director of tennis Jeff Tarango and former WTA pro and current Pepperdine women’s assistant coach Lauren Embree.

As its name suggests, First Break Academy gives children an initial experience with tennis while also allowing for other forms of play. “For the past few years, First Break Academy has brought children to tennis who might otherwise not have been exposed to the sport,” says Shriver. “Multi-sport play like basketball is merged into early tennis instruction with great success. it’s a win-win model.”

In addition to competitive tennis games for all levels of play, Los Angeles Tennis Bash also features a Hard Racquet Demo Court, MultiSport Kid Zone, lunch and a silent auction.

First Break Academy’s Executive Director Peggy Bott is grateful for the contributions of this year’s renowned volunteers, and she has her eye on the organization’s future. “We have made tremendous strides in a short time,” she says, “and wish to build and continue to fund scholarships for dedicated youth who attend our tennis and learning programs.”

To register for LA Tennis Bash 2017, go to Tickets are $75 for adults and $40 for juniors (17 and under) and spectators are $35, which includes lunch and the silent auction access. Levels of sponsorships include: Champion ($1,500), Finalist ($750), Semifinalist ($500), Quarterfinalist ($250) and Friend ($50), and auction items exceeding $100 are also being accepted.



After 40 competitive seasons as the Head Women’s Tennis Coach at Loyola Marymount University, Jamie Sanchez is taking his wealth of experience and everlasting passion for the game to its sister institution, Marymount California University.

Since 2006, both the men’s and women’s tennis programs at MCU have been inactive. Enter Sanchez, who will rebuild these programs and take over as the head coach for both teams. “I am really excited about starting two tennis programs at such a great university,” he says. “I hope the part I take in establishing these programs in the greatest sport ever can mirror the growth and insight that the University has for lifelong learning.”

Ironically, this role comes full circle to Sanchez as he implemented the women’s tennis program at LMU those many years ago. The 2017-2018 season at MCU will be dedicated to recruiting, with the official launch of both programs in the fall of 2018. “I’m actively reaching out to all the junior colleges,” says Sanchez. “My emphasis is on connecting with the tennis community in Southern California and more prominently the Catholic schools and any and all high schools in the 30-mile radius, without excluding anyone else. Community colleges in SoCal are part of the outreach.

“I’m also going through the channels of the SCTA, reaching out to the players through that conduit – all of the tennis families, and kids that are involved in tennis in general. It’s a combined effort – we’re trying to start two programs, but we also need to inform people that Marymount California is starting a tennis program. People are still finding that out.”

Embracing that “growth is a part of change,” Sanchez is an ideal figure for this type of outreach because his love for tennis runs so deep. “Here’s the thing about tennis – I’ve always had a passion for the sport itself,” he says. “I’m an unlikely candidate for the sport because I played football all four years of high school and didn’t play tennis until senior year, I was a late arrival to the game. I played college football and tennis all four years of college. It’s a lifelong sport – at no matter what level you partake, it’s enjoyable and rewarding. That’s been the catalyst and I find it very exciting to be doing it here.”

Sanchez is looking forward to forging new connections, both in and out of the new programs, and he welcomes hearing from all those who are interested. “There are so many ways to reach out and make sure the word is spread,” he says. “I’m open to and I’m really looking forward to people contacting me. They may not end up coming here and that’s ok. Just reaching out and making the communication is of utmost importance for all those who have a common bond, and that’s the game.”