Beaufort Summer Splash a smash at Dataw

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The Beaufort Summer Splash at Dataw Island Club culminated Sunday with 18 title matches. A field of 117 players from three states battled it out over the three-day event at its new venue, Dataw Island Club. Top seeded  John Chryst, of Bluffton, a longtime chair umpire on the ATP Tour, took the Men’s 4.0 Singles title over No. 2 seed Kosmus Ochran of Mount Pleasant.

Tyler Davis, director of the Mount Pleasant Tennis Club, defeated Brian Hattaway, of Beaufort, 6-1, 6-3 for the Men’s 4.5 Singles title. Davis, a Beaufort native, played college tennis and was the women’s tennis coach at Presbyterian College, Clinton, S.C. “Great to have moved the Splash here to Dataw!” said Davis. “Terrific amenities!”

The most exciting match of the day was for the Women’s 4.5 Doubles title in which Dataw Tennis Pro Donna McKenna and partner Cindy Vander Berg, of Sun City, outlasted Jeanne Arlow and Michelle Hrabanek in a whiplash-paced, two-hour-plus duel that saw the winners overcome a 2-5 deficit to catch up and win the first set in a tie break, then continue on to take the title 7-6(2); 6-3. The youngest competitor, Samantha Light, 16, of Cramerton, N.C., crowned her Splash debut with a 6-0, 6-0 victory over  Annie Bass, Charleston. “This Summer Splash was a blast. The facility is fantastic!” she said. Light noted she is playing next weekend in a qualifier for the Junior US Open.

Only two entrants doubled in the finals: Robert Tillison, a Hilton Head Pro League player, won the Men’s 4.5 Doubles with partner David Holland by defeating John Bauer/Justin Rogers 6-1, 7-5. He then teamed with Julie Taylor, also of Hilton Head, to take the hotly contested Combo Mixed 8.0 Doubles 6-1, 6-3 over John Chryst/Palma Chryst. The other player to win two titles was Kelly Walsh with 2.5 Doubles and Combo Mixed 6.0 Doubles crowns.

The tournament was a huge success with Dataw Island Club offering players the use of the pool, pub and grounds, turning the former downtown event into an all-clay, family-friendly long weekend. We anticipate record registration at the Beaufort Summer Splash at Dataw Island Club 2012 once the buzz on 2011 spreads. See you there!!