"This is a really big deal," said team captain Arlie Alford. "Tennis players dream about going to the Nationals. Castlewood has never had a team go before. It's a rare occasion and an honor for any team to go."
The 3.0 doubles team of seniors ages 50 through 61 won the District Championship on May 6 in Sacramento, making it eligible to compete at Stanford. Over 8,000 USTA (United States Tennis Association) players competed during the season and the competition was narrowed down first at the district level and then the sectional level.
"The Bats practiced hard," Alford said. "We are very cohesive group. We support and help each other. When one member of the team has a problem with say, serving, then the others jump in and practice with her until the problem's solved."
The Castle Bat players who competed at both district and sectional levels are Alford, co-captain Robin Bunton, Anna Barletta, Debra Hunt, Lori Johnson, Cheryl Moeller, Myra Rayfield, Sandra Stites and Sudsy Torbeck. Coaches are Jim Swansigner and Adri Ciarnuto, and the tennis office manager is Lisa Bargeman.
"We are fortunate to have two fantastic coaches who go out of their way for us," Alford said. "The team's motto is 'Battitude!'"
"We are proud to represent Northern California and our hometown of Pleasanton," she added