Tennis players take to courts at Shores club

Father-son tennis team William and Jonathan Lo knew nothing about their opponents, the Davidsons, whom they drew in the first round of the National Father and Son Hard Court Championship that started Monday.

But it really didn't matter. Taking part in the longstanding tradition of excellence at the club is what really motivated them to compete.

"It's a nice club with a very strong tennis tradition," said the senior Lo about the homegrown tournament, which has been held at La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club since 1959 and brings the top father and son tennis teams in the nation to La Jolla. "That's why I'm doing this."

William Lo is looking forward to competing with his son, especially since they have never played in a tournament before.

It's the challenge

Jonathan Lo, who's played the sport for 11 years - last year for La Jolla High's team - said he's a little leery about ever becoming a professional. But he definitely intends to compete at the collegiate level.

"It's challenging," he said. "It feels good at the end of every match, especially when I win: It gives me confidence."

It's tough going for anyone involved in the tournament, including the Los. William said he and his son will have to win at least half a dozen matches to win out. "The competition is very keen," William noted. "We're not sure we're going to go that deep. I'm just competing for the camaraderie. We're just going to have some fun."

Building on history

William "Bill" Kellogg, current owner of the beach and tennis club, said it was his granddad, William Scripps Kellogg, who first started the United States Tennis Association (USTA) National 40 Hard Court Championships for men and women in singles, doubles and mixed doubles for players age 39 and above. The field includes former touring pros and the nation's strongest players in their senior age group.

Over the years the National 40 Hard Court Championships tournament has added new categories, like father-son and grandfather-grandson categories.

"About five years ago we added the grandfather-grandson event, the same year that my first grandson was born," noted Kellogg So we're planning ahead."

The Los' first match will be today (Thursday) at 3 p.m. Matches in the Hard Court Championships conclude Sunday at the club at 2000 Spindrift Drive. Admission is free, but parking onsite is $5.

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