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South Carolina Wins Big at 2022 Callen Cup

South Carolina was the big winner at the 35th Annual Callen Cup. The Callen Cup, formerly the Southern Senior Cup, was named in honor of the late USTA Southern Executive Director and COO, John Callen. Top players from 9 Southern states in age groups from 35-75 competed on clay courts in Pelham, Alabama from May 31 – June 5, 2022.
The South Carolina Women’s 65’s scored a strong first place finish, dropping only one total match. The 75’s won 5th place and the 45’s ran the table and finished first. The 35’s defeated a strong GA team to win 3rd place. The 55’s had a very tough draw against #2 seed GA in the first round and rebounded by coming through consolation to win 5th. These combined results gave South Carolina 36 points to clinch the Women’s overall.
The South Carolina men won the Men’s 75’s and placed second in the 65’s. The 35’s snagged a 3rd place finish. The men scored 31 points to clinch second to the AL men.
The Men’s and Women’s combined 67 points earned South Carolina first place for the Mildred Southern Cup Award!
Note: 24 of these championship points were gained by Sophie Woorons and her dad Lucien.
South Carolina also received the Gil Stacey Cup which is given to the state that wins the most total matches during the week.
“There is something special about our players from South Carolina,” said co-captain Cindy Babb. We play the game with great sportsmanship and positive effort in each and every match. If we happen to win, it is icing on the cake!”
Cindy continued, “I am so proud of the way each and every one of our players competed throughout the entire week. There is not another state that has better sportsmanship and camaraderie than Team SC.”
South Carolina player Betsy McColl played in her first Senior Cup in 1986. It was played on Hilton Head Island amongst four teams, South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee and North Carolina. The following year the tournament became a Southern-wide event. Betsy has hardly missed any Senior Cups in 36 years. This year she played three matches of singles for the 75 women’s team and was undefeated!
“What I enjoy most besides the high level of competition, is the tremendous amount of camaraderie generated by having players of all ages playing for the same team goals. To see the younger players on the sidelines cheering for the older teammates and vice versa is something very rare in any sport,” said co-captain, Andy Steingold.
“The biggest thrill was sharing the experience with men and women who share such a love for the game and a love for representing the state of South Carolina, and who came through the tournament with such success.”
All of the state’s earned prize money was donated to the South Carolina Tennis Patrons Foundation which is committed to helping tennis flourish across the Palmetto State through grants, scholarships, and charitable work.