Tennis players sweep November honors


Jeff Race, left, and Lydia Tan smile after receiving their plaques during the awards ceremony for the 10th TanHoldings Tennis Classic last month at the Hibiscus Hall of the Fiesta Resort & Spa Saipan. (Roselyn B. Monroyo)

CNMI Sports Hall of Famer Jeff Race and three other tennis players made it to the Northern Mariana Sports Association honor roll for November after earning multiple championships in last month’s 10th TanHoldings Tennis Classic.

Race was named NMSA Male Athlete of the Month for topping the mixed doubles 50 and over age group (with Lydia Tan) and the men’s 50 and over doubles (with Guam’s Sam Lai). Race and Tan won against the husband-and-wife tandem of Don and Marivic Dunlop in the mixed doubles, while in the men’s doubles, the former and Lai prevailed over Roy Banados and George Poquiz. The mixed doubles title with Tan was special for Race, as it was his 100th championship.

With Tan notching the mixed doubles crown with Race and getting two more—mixed doubles 4.0 and women’s 4.0 doubles, she took the NMSA Female Athlete of the Month. Tan partnered with Sam Lai in downing Ikuko Obuse and Eric Abragan and Sarka Glajkova and Martin Jambor for the mixed doubles championship. In the women’s 4.0 doubles, Tan teamed up with Obuse in winning against the pairs of Dunlop and Anni Lai and Kathy Bristol and Mae Hsieh.

Meanwhile, Andy and Helen Kim also triumphed in multiple divisions of last month’s TanHoldings Tennis Classic to bag the NMSA/ Tan Siu Lin Foundation Student Athletes of the Month honors.

In Week 1 of the competition, Helen clinched both the girls U14 singles and doubles crown. She defeated Sein Chung, Sei Yul Hong, and Savita Sikkel in the singles contest. In the doubles, Helen joined forces with Sikkel and they topped Serin and Hong and Irin Chung and Hoo Wang.

For the second and final week of the tournament, Helen faced the same foes and ruled the women’s 4.0 singles.

Andy also played in Week 2 and reigned supreme in the men’s 4.0 singles after downing David Kwon, Edwin Simbulan and Felixberto Rulona. In the opening week, Andy lived up to expectations in the boys U16 singles, as he took the division crown against runner-up and No. 4 Jun Wang, No. 2 Daniel Kang, and the unranked David Kwon.

Roselyn Monroyo | Reporter
Roselyn Monroyo is the sports reporter of Saipan Tribune. She has been covering sports competitions for more than two decades. She is a basketball fan and learned to write baseball and football stories when she came to Saipan in 2005.
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