Pickleball tournament a hit with locals and visitors alike

Published 10:59 am Sunday, June 12, 2022

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The OBX Pickleball Group held its first tournament in Dare recently at the county’s tennis facility in Kill Devil Hills.  The event attracted 90 players – both men and women – from as far away as South Dakota and Florida, according to event organizers. Many locals from the area participated in their first organized pickleball event. Others that traveled in from central and western North Carolina as well as Virginia Beach.

Some players earned their first medals in a round robin-style format. Teams played as many as seven games against each opponent in the 10 brackets made up of men’s and women’s group play on the first day and mixed doubles were played the following day.

The OBX Pickleball Group, with its network of volunteers, turned the four tennis courts into 10 pickleball courts that saw over 200 matches played in the two-day event. Players were treated to a raffle-style giveaway of 25 donations from many local businesses.

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“Pickleball is the fastest growing sport in America and it is growing here in Dare County,” stated an event organizer. “It was great to see all the smiling faces as there were many comments made about how well the tournament was ran and stayed on time.”

Local businesses also provided food and water.

Scott Garber, president of the OBX Pickleball Group, said more pickleball events are being planned the fall for the benefit of local hotel and restaurant businesses. “It is a win-win when we have a tournament for our local players to be able to play higher skill level players plus it attracts travelers to come to OBX and spend money in our local economy.”

For more information about the group, visit facebook.com/groups/759772638205728.

Tournament winners were:

Men’s 3.0 50+ – Peter Erickson/Dave Pureza 1st, Reid Zobel/Scott Murphy 2nd, Rick Pureza/Bret Burgess 3rd

Men’s 3.5 40+ – Richare Delugo/James Lauder 1st, Shannon Epps/Craig Joines 2nd, Morgan Stark/Gunn Unoppet 3rd

Women’s 3.0 19-64 – Dianna Plippo/Ramona Waltermeyer 1st, Lori O’connor /Holly Sleph 2nd, Abbie Joines/Mimi Petry 3rd

Women’s 3.0 65+ – Terri Sawyer/Anna Miller 1st, Priscilla Cahoon/Pamela Evans 2nd, Marinne Dubresson/Ann Carey 3rd

Women’s 3.5 19+ – Kate Heggie /Tara Salch 1st, Ann Wellham/Cayce Patterson 2nd, Candice Moore/Julie Stark 3rd

Mixed Doubles 3.0 59-under – Miki Wallace/Reid Zobel 1st, Debbie and Johnny Fortenberry 2nd, Diana Flippo/Rick Pureze 3rd

Mixed Doubles 3.0 60-64 – NiNi Petry/Mike Heider 1st, Ramona Waltemeyer/Chuck Wakefield 2nd, Joan and Duke Rollins 3rd

Mixed Doubles 65 + – Cynthia and Peter Erickson 1st, Priscilla and Jack Cahoon 2nd, Marianne Dubresson/Jay Lamb 3rd

Mixed Doubles 3.5 19-49 – Kate Heggie/Tomasz Buchta 1st, Candice and Jack Moore 2nd, Cayce Patterson/Randy Jones 3rd

Mixed Doubles 3.5 50+ – Laurie Coyne/James Lauder 1st, Julie and Morgan Stark 2nd, Susan and Charles Voigt 3rd