Corpus Christi and the Coastal Bend of Texas | We Investigate

Islanders looking for Southland home cooking at conference tennis tournament this weekend

Texas A&M-Corpus Christi will be hosting this year’s Southland Conference tennis championships starting Thursday at the Thomas J. Henry Tennis Center.

The Islanders’ women have won three straight conference titles. They come in as the No. 5 seed.

And The men are seeking their eighth NCAA Tournament appearance. And they are seeded No. 2.

Coach Steve Moore does a great job of finding talent. His roster has a definite international flavor.

Many of the players are from other countries. But he’s also found some outstanding players from here in the United States, too.

“Steve called me and asked if I wanted to come here,” said Carlos Pedrosa Cuevas of Sevilla, Spain. “He said we have a tough team, practice hard and want to win championships and that’s what I wanted. Corpus Christi is a really nice city and I love the weather and I decided to come here.”

Another Spanish expatriate, Maria Maldonado of El Elido, Spain, also likes playing with the Islanders.

“I wanted to combine tennis with studies and Spain is tough so I wanted to come to the U.S,” she said. “This team is really good, high-level players and coaches. The university is really nice and I love the campus and program.”

Moore said he typically recruits to a specific template.

“You know we just chase a certain level of player, level of character, level of work ethic in both school and tennis,” Moore said. “We have found some great ones.

“A great boy from Corpus here who is an engineering student and a girl from Miami who was ranked 60th in the United States and a boy from College Station and sometimes we go further if we need to get that level of commitment.”

This tournament has the makings of a great one. All the action gets underway at the Thomas J. Henry Center Thursday and will run through Sunday.

Alan Harwell

Alan Harwell

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