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Local players make division finals in first Junior Legends Circuit play

The St. Petersburg Tennis Center was the site of the first Florida Junior Legends Circuit last weekend.

Eighteen players competed in four divisions, with St. Petersburg finalists in each.

Rich Terrell, teaching professional at the center, was runner-up to Sarasota's Rill Baxter in the men's Open division. Baxter was once ranked in the top 50 in the world. A gruelling three-hour match resulted in Baxter winning 6-7 (7-3), 6-3, 6-2.

"It was a tough but good match," Terrell said. "Our first set lasted an hour and 20 minutes. Altogether, we had a hard-fought three-hour match."

Mike Reilly was a finalist in the Grand Masters division for ages 40 and older. Jerry Stewart of Orlando won 6-3, 6-1.

Wild-card player Terry McClellan from the center was also a finalist. In the Junior Legends division, McClellan lost 6-4, 6-2 to Lakeland's Jeff Stokes.

St. Petersburg lawyer Ed Jagger and George Tanase defeated Reilly and Mike Brady 6-1, 6-2 in the open doubles.

"I thought the tournament went well, and it was nice to have the circuit start up again at the St. Pete Tennis Center," said Phil Secada, Legends director. "There are so many good players in the St. Petersburg area that continue to play that it's good to begin the circuit here.

"I would have to credit Dan Sullivan with that. He taught so many players and showed them how to have fun and just had a great influence on them. I think that's a big reason many of them are still playing."

The Legends circuit returns to Pinellas County on Aug.

30 at the Treasure Island Tennis and Yacht Club.

For information about the Legends circuit, contact Secada at (305) 685-5344.

SOUTH PINELLAS WOMEN'S LEAGUE: The St. Petersburg Tennis Center C team edged Lakewood B by one point to win the South Pinellas Ladies 3.5 Doubles League. Feather Sound was one point behind Lakewood B, and Isla del Sol B earned a point less than Feather Sound. In all, nine teams participated.

St. Petersburg Tennis Center also won the 3.0 league.

SENIOR WOMEN PLAYOFF: Injuries plagued Lakewood Country Club in its first playoff match with Innisbrook Resort in the USTA/Florida Section Senior Women's 3.5 Doubles League last weekend. Lakewood, the 3.5 south division winner with a 7-2 overall record, lost 2-1 to north division winner Innisbrook, which is undefeated, giving up one point because of a lack of players.

Alice Belanger and Judy Charlton defeated Innisbrook's Barbara Raum and Bonnie Nieman 7-6 (7-5), 6-0 in the No.

1 position. Elaine Concord and Fran Matwijczyk fell 6-2, 6-4 to Innisbrook's Josie Doucette and Anne Hammond in No.

2.

"We had a good time, and they were two terrific matches," said Janet Vuille, captain of the Lakewood team. "We just did not have enough players able to play the third position."

Vuille, Margie Kelly and Bert Devries are injured; Anne Turville was out of town, leaving only Katie Avirett available.

Lakewood hosts Innisbrook Saturday; if a third match is necessary, it will be played Sunday at Innisbrook. The winning team advances to the state tournament in May.

COCKERILL JOINS ANGELELLI: Lisa Cockerill, a USPTR certified instructor from southern California, joins the staff at the Angelelli World of Tennis. Cockerill, a former professional circuit player will offer classes in private and group settings.

Cockerill and Phil Girardi are coaching the Admiral Farragut team.

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