New tennis tournament rips an ace for Devereux


The women’s division winners in the Devereux-Suntree Country Club Open Tennis Tournament included Michele Salazar, left, Ann McLaughlin, Joanne Lamontagne and Kelly Gaitan.

photo by Darrell Woehler

The idea for an inaugural Devereux-Suntree Country Club Open Tennis Tournament came out of a Devereux Council brainstorming session, including new Devereux board member and Suntree Country Club member Liz Pinchera. 

This tournament’s director was Paul Davis, who is also Director of Suntree Country Club Tennis. 

The tournament took place at the Suntree Country Club April 1 through 3, with 58 men and women participating from throughout central Brevard. Divisions were broken down between men, women and mixed couples. Though all the players live locally now, the background of many of them had a distinct international flavor, including Caroline Jiborn, who is originally from Sweden, and Sharon Ford from South Africa.

From the cloudy, warm weather on Friday evening and Saturday, Sunday broke crisp , clear and cool, perfect weather for the finals in divisional pairings.

In the top Platinum men’s division, the winners were Eric Taylor and Andrew Papworth. The Platinum women winners were Robin Davis and Nicole Haskins. Platinum Mixed winners were Jose and Michelle Salazar.Eric Taylor, left , and Andrew Papworth won the Platinum men’s division in the Devereux-Suntree Country Club Open Tennis Tournament.

Gold men’s winners were Mark Tormoen and Chris Rea. Gold women’s were Michelle Salazar and Kelly Gaitan, and Silver women’s Patti Calhoun and Sara Hatfield took Silver. Gold mixed winners were Ben and Michelle Smith.

According to Hurst, in addition to having a successful tournament, the council hopes that this fundraising event will become an annual signature event for Devereux. 

Some of the major tennis tournaments have ball boys and ball girls to retrieve tennis balls for the players between action on the court. This tournament, at least for one bit of action, had a ball dog. A black German Shepherd named Darby, owned by Bruce Feron of Melbourne, found a ball to his liking and sat on the sidelines chewing away. Needless to say, another ball was quickly brought into play.

Devereux is a national nonprofit organization that operates centers across the nation and in more than 38 counties in Florida with the most intensive facility in Melbourne/Viera. Devereux is one of the premier providers of behavioral health, intellectual/developmental disabilities and child welfare services to children and families.

Community involvement is very important in an effort such as this. Dan Adovasio, a local insurance agent, is chairman of the Devereux Brevard Development Leadership Council and showed his support by attending the three-day event. Pinchera, the coordinator of the tennis tournament, is also on that council.

For more information on Devereux call 321-242-9100 or go to