2006 SOUTHSIDE TENNIS ACADEMY

Our campers!



More than 60 great kids have shown up this year! Why? Maybe because we were named the top USTA NJTL tennis camp in the Southwest last year... or maybe because of...

Our coaches!



... we have the best coaches of any camp in the city -- they're all D-1 players and have come here from all over the world! From left: Tina Razloznik (UA - Slovenia), Jessie Rochefort (UA - Florida and Quebec), Tanya Cota (Rider - Tucson), Kasia Jakowlew (UA - Sweden) and Camelia Todorova (UA - California and Bulgaria). They bring a variety of backgrounds and lessons to share with our campers. Best, they bring a passion for the sport that they pass on to a new generation.



Kasia explains the drill.



What's a broken wrist to a champ? Jessie demonstrates the forehand to Rebekah.



Tina offers encouragement as she feeds.



Cami pushes the kids to the limit in a rapid-fire drill.



Tanya has the beginners regularly hitting the ball in the court on just their second day!

Forehand Day!

Today we focused on forehands, adjusting strokes to provide repetition within a variety of formats. The coaches devised an ingenious series of stations, so that campers would move from one match situation to another, hitting nothing but forehands. It was fast moving, and we saw real improvement.



Maria shows how it's done...



...as does Francisco...



...and Ali shows picture-perfect racquet preparation...



...and the beginners show their stuff, too as Anaira rips a forehand...



...and Brianna watches Lupita's forehand sail over the net.

Oh yeah, it was hot, too!

The temperature hit 100 as camp began this morning...



Albert, who plays for St. Joseph's College and Ryan, who plays for Sahuarita High, watch the action as they take a much needed water break from their grueling tiebreak point play.



We made sure all the teams took frequent water breaks. Note our spiffy new canopy in the background! It offers a welcome respite from the sun.

Run!!!



Quickness is the most important physical aspect of tennis, so the coaches stepped up conditioning today, starting with the chase...



...followed by the dreaded ball-drop drill, and then sprints!

Why are we the best camp? Here's why...

Bethany was having trouble generating power from her backhand today. Instead of taking a water break, all FOUR coaches stayed with her to work out the problem.



Bethany gets instruction in Slovenian, French, Swedish and Bulgarian/California Girl. No wonder she looks so confused!

Pima coach visits camp!

(6/8/06) Pima College's outstanding new women's tennis coach, Gretchen Schantz, visited the camp today and was impressed with what she saw. A number of campers caught her eye, and she spoke to them at length about the opportunities that playing for Pima offers. A New Mexico native, Coach Schantz was a standout player at UC-Davis and also is currently an instructor at the Tucson Racquet Club, our tennis home away from home. We hope to have more college coaches drop by this summer.

CHAIN RACE!!!

(6/12/06) The chain race is a great test of stamina, quickness and teamwork, and the campers love it!



Jessie's Canucks jump off to an early lead...



...but Kasia's Polacks come roaring back...



...and win in a walk, much to the delight of their enthusiastic coach, as Jessie dejectedly waits for her team to make its final run.

Conditioning can be fun!

(6/13) Every day, we begin camp with 30 minutes of intense, competitive conditioning. Why? As our coaches will tell you, in a competitive match, the better-conditioned player always wins.

But we try to make it fun, too. Today was no exception as Jessie's Canucks and Kasia's Polacks lined up against each other again, but with a different result than yesterday's. It was a combination race/obstacle course, and quick feet meant everything!



Lupita, with a little encouragement from her coach, starts the race...



...but Brianna brings the Canucks back, bringing a smile to Jessie's face...



...Cami steps in to help Emma through the paces...



Danielle gives the Polacks the lead...



...but Ali gets it back for the Canucks...



...and Kyle stamps an exclamation point on the win with some terrific backpedalling!

OLYMPIC TENNIS!

(6/15) Without question, the campers' favorite game to end camp each day is Olympic Tennis. In this drill, two players stand at net and attempt to score "Olympic Points" against two baseliners. If the baseliners win, or score a clean winner, they race to the other side of the court to take their opponents' place, while their replacements try to put away an overhead to take their place. Here's what it looked like today.



Cami and Bethany cover the middle...



...as Lani and Leslie attempt to hit the ball past them...



...Alec skies to slam an overhead...



...but when Kyle sets for an overhead, everyone in Pima county runs for cover...

Goodbye, twins!



Isabel (left) and Emma say goodbye for now to Coach Tanya.

Our delightful new campers, twin sisters Emma and Isabel are heading off on vacation, and we'll all miss them, especially their coach, Tanya Cota. However, they've already made arrangements to train with Tanya when they return. With an attitude like this, the sisters are destined for success!

It's doubles time!



Bernardo gets set to return Roberto's serve as Alicia is ready at net.

(6/19) Tomorrow is our first match, against the Sabino summer camp, so the campers worked on doubles today. Doubles accounts for 3 of the 5 points in camp play, so it's very important.



Daisy is an imposing figure at net as Esteban serves.



Cami does her best impression of a USTA official. Note the Stevie Wonder shades...



Ryan starts nailing his new serve - look at the extension!

STILL UNDEFEATED!



Daisy serves as Priscilla guards the net.

(6/27) Today, a well-coached Sahuaro team came to challenge the SSTA, but the result was the same, as our campers earned a decisive 51-26 game victory to remain undefeated.



Bernardo (left) and Jaime were awesome at #1 doubles!



Ryan and Ali shake hands with their opponents after an impressive win.



While the matches were being played, the other campers played games. Here, the Eastern Euros are about to go down to defeat against the Canucks in Resurrection.

Lupita's First Match!

During Resurrection, 5-year old Lupita came up to me and said she'd had enough of games - she wanted to play a match like the big kids. Sahuaro coach Bill Foster and I found her an opponent, and she stepped on the court.



Lupita fearlessly faces her older, taller, and more experienced opponent.



Lupita shows her game face as she serves...

Lupita lost her first match, 4-1, but she didn't care - she was so happy to have played competitively at last!

THE FINAL DAY!!!

It was a sad day for the coaches, saying goodbye to our wonderful campers. The day began with photos...



Tina asked Kasia to take a photo of the coaches. Of course, Chilla couldn't resist telling Cash how to do it...

Our match began with Randolph - we lost a close one, but think we can still take the title in the playoffs next week (we were missing four of our top players)...



The coaches cheer Ashlee and Ernie on to victory, with a little help from Brianna and Lupita...



And Lupita spends a little time with her favorite coach before...

PRIZE TIME!

This year, we had more than 100 prizes donated by our supporters for our annual target tennis game -- everything from pro-level racquets to DVD players, to racquet bags, bookbags and lots of other great items. Thanks to our donors - The Racquet Shack, the USTA Southwest Section and the Southern Arizona Tennis Association!



The T-minator feeds the ball as Tanya, Jessie, Cami and Kasia guard the prizes (note the departing Randolph campers wondering, "Hey coach, why don't we do that at our camp?")...



For Esteban, winning a week's supply of Goldfish is like winning Wimbledon...



How hot was it today? Brianna and Kasia fried an egg on the court while enjoying ice-cold eegee's
compliments of the wonderful Gamez family...

THANK YOU,CAMPERS!!!

Here's a postcard from your coaches, who appreciate the opportunity to coach you...



We love you guys! From left, coaches Tanya, Cami, Tina, Brad Pitt, Jessie and Kasia.

Way to go, campers!!!

Even though we lost today, we are still Tucson's team to beat (we've won the city championship 6 out of the past 7 years) and we want to bring another title home. Remember, the city championships are Friday, July 7th at Randolph Tennis Center. Teams play at 5pm, and everyone else is invited to be there by 6pm. Those of you who have been there before know how much fun this event is. Please drink plenty of fluids every night!

To read about last year's award-winning camp, please go to 2005 Southside Tennis Academy!

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