Steingold receives USTA honor

  • Friday, October 18, 2013

Provided Andy Steingold faces off against Hugh Thompson during a doubles match at Seabrook.

When you are as passionate about tennis as Andy Steingold, it doesn’t go unnoticed.

Steingold, the director of tennis at Legend Oaks Golf and Tennis Club and Ashley Ridge High School tennis coach, has been named the 2013 South Carolina Adult Male Player of the Year by the United States Tennis Association. He was selected for the honor based on tournament results, state rankings and endorsements from other players.

“I’m honored because there are a lot of deserving players in this state,” Steingold said. “Also people said very nice things about me in my nomination application.”

Steingold finished 2012 with an 18-2 record, his only losses coming in Southern and National tournaments to ranked opponents. He has been the top-ranked player in the state for his age division for the past two years and last year rose to the No. 6 ranking for the Southeast Region 60’s division that includes players from nine states.

The last four years he represented South Carolina in the senior cup, a regional all-star tournament that features teams comprised of four players from different age groups.

His 2013 accomplishments include singles championships at the Litchfield State Clay Courts in September and the Alan Fleming tournament held this month at Seabrook.

Over the last few years he has also had a lot of success in doubles tournaments, pairing up with different friends for men’s 55s, 60s, 9.0 Mixed and Open Mixed competition. During the Alan Fleming tournament, he and Cynthia Babb lost a tough third set match in the 60s Mixed Doubles finals to the World No. 1 team of Brenda Carter and Hugh Thompson.

In nominating Steingold for the Player of the Year honor, Tabatha Waddill collected multiple endorsements from players who know him well. Just as Steingold’s results on the court serve as a testament to his competitive spirit, those endorsements serve as a testament to his love of the game and life itself.

“Andy is a true sportsman,” Diane Barker said. “He competes fairly and brings out the best in his opponent and partners. He is gracious in victory and complementary in defeat. He is a great example on how one should carry oneself on the court.”

Alfons Cadusch has known Steingold for decades and refers to him as “a class act both on and off of the court” and “a good ambassador for the tennis world.”

Art Welling also has kind words for Steingold.

“Andy, the person, may be an even larger asset than Andy the tennis pro,” he said. “I first met him years ago. … Since then he’s become one of my favorite, if not my favorite, person to be on the court with either as an opponent or a doubles partner. He brings an uncanny level of excitement to the game, and his dedication to the members of the club he represents is truly unparalleled. It is obvious that he cares about making his club a welcoming place for players of all levels, and he actually loves being surrounded by the tennis community.”

Steingold was a young man when he first became a standout on the tennis court. He went on to become a member of the University of South Carolina men’s tennis team who, after graduation, launched a career as a tennis instructor.

He gave up tennis instruction to embark on a retail marketing career that spanned 25 years but, upon retirement, picked up where he left off.

“I wanted to do something I really had a passion for so I got back into it about seven years ago,” Steingold said. “I’ve had a couple of real good years on the court but more importantly I’m having a blast. Playing competitive tennis is something I enjoy not only because I like to win but also because I like the competition and the people involved with all the tournaments. I’ve traveled across several states and met a lot of nice people. I’ve developed a lot of friendships and it has been good for Legend Oaks because it has helped get the club’s name out there.”

Steingold has helped Legend Oaks owners boost their brand recognition over the past few years, particularly in the tennis realm.

The club’s tennis facility only includes four courts but over the past several years Steingold has help turned it into a bit of a tennis metropolis. Today, 45 USTA teams play out of the little facility nestled under the oaks. Despite its size, Legend Oaks won the 2012 USTA Facility of the Year award. The club hosts two major tournaments each year, along with numerous socials. The third annual Championships at Legend Oaks hosted more than 140 players from the Charleston area in January. The Level 3 tournament raised $2,500 for MUSC Hollings Cancer Center.

In September the club hosted the Legend Oaks Gives Back Benefit tournament that drew more than 100 players from the area and raised funds for Meals on Wheels of Summerville and The Palmetto House Homeless Shelter and Soup Kitchen.

Contact Roger Lee @ 873-9424 ext. 213 or rlee@journalscene.com

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