The Roanoke Junior Team Tennis league was started in the spring of 2009. The league began when USTA youth coordinator asked Robin Echols if she would like to start a league in the Roanoke area. Robin went to the various clubs in the area and began to organize. There was considerable support with each club appointing a person to organize their teams. Rana Sass from Hunting Hills was an invaluable asset as she organized her club and had experience with JTT when she lived in Atlanta. Daniel Ragsdale organized Roanoke Country Club teams and Kyle Allen was the go to guy at Hidden Valley. Ridgewood Tennis, encouraged by Mike Johnson, also entered several teams, as well as Blacksburg Country Club, under the direction of Bill Woods, had 2 teams.
The league in spring 2009 fielded 17 teams with 187 participants for ages 14U, 12U, 10U and 8U. Everyone was extremely excited about the prospect of the juniors at their clubs actually using the skills taught in their lessons and clinics. Three teams advanced to VA district play and one team from the league- Blacksburg went to Mid-Atlantic Sectionals and won there. It was an extremely successful kick off to our league.
The league was so successful that parents and players were asking for a fall league. The fall league of 2009 added 2 more teams for a total of 19 teams. Three teams will advance from the fall league to the VA district tournament, July 30-August 1, 2010 at ODU in Norfolk – (10U)RCC 10’s, (12U)Hunting Hills Team Nike, and (14U)Hidden Valley Blue Aces.
The spring league will begin organizing in March of 2011 and those winners will be able to advance to VA Districts. Also, there is considerable interest in forming a non-advancing boy’s league and a girl’s league. This would take place in June and July. There is a need for independent captains for teams outside of the clubs.