The United States, Canada and Mexico are divided into various regions for the purposes of regional Pickleball competition. The USAPA southwest region encompasses Mexico, New Mexico and Arizona. Although this is the inaugural year for this USAPA regional tournament, attendance was strong and pushed host Pueblo El Mirage’s 16-court capacity to the limit for four full days. Hundreds of competitors flooded the campus competing in a wide variety of age-specific singles and doubles. The youngest competitors enthusiastically competed in the 10-13 age division, the oldest competitors battled it out in the 80 Plus age division and everyone in between found their levels of play based on the youngest person in their doubles partnerships. Since this is an age-grouped competition, players of all ratings from 3.0 through 5.0 compete against each other in their respective age groups.
Sun Lakes’ players Dianne Zimmerman and David Zapatka represented Sun Lakes very well. Playing with his younger partner in the 50-54 age group, Zapatka paired with Zimmerman in the Mixed Doubles competition defeating pairs rated as high as 5.0 to win the gold medal. Playing with his younger partner in the 60-64 age group, Simmons paired with Zapatka in the Men’s Doubles competition defeating pairs rated as high as 5.0 to win the silver medal.
With players from all over the southwest region in attendance, the question, “Where are you from?” was commonly asked as players associated with each other and made new friends. “Sun Lakes!” Zimmerman and Zapatka proudly responded (Simmons resides in Trilogy) repeatedly giving our community positive exposure throughout the world of Pickleball. Congratulations lady and gentlemen on your outstanding achievement!