Special Olympics North Carolina Athletes & Partners Excel at 2017 Special Olympics North America Tennis Championship

Eighteen Special Olympics North Carolina tennis athletes and six Unified Partners competed in the 2017 Special Olympics Tennis Championship Oct. 19-Oct. 22 in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, according to Keith L. Fishburne, president/CEO of Special Olympics North Carolina. Unified Partners are individuals without intellectual disabilities who train and compete alongside Special Olympics athletes.

More than 120 tennis players from 10 programs across the United States competed in one or two competition events: individual skills, singles competition, doubles competition and Unified doubles competition. Athletes and Unified Partners are placed in competitive divisions based on gender, age and ability.

Local Special Olympics North Carolina programs represented include: Mecklenburg, New Hanover, and Watauga.

The results of the 2017 Special Olympics North America Tennis Championship are as follows:

Singles Competition:

  • Mecklenburg County: Katie Degnan—Silver Medal
  • Mecklenburg County: Mia Allen—Gold Medal
  • Mecklenburg County: Sara Hibbits—Gold Medal
  • Mecklenburg County: Robin Callaway—Silver Medal
  • Mecklenburg County: Charlie Brown—Gold Medal
  • Mecklenburg County: Ted Hula—Gold Medal
  • Mecklenburg County: Forrest Johnson—Silver Medal
  • Mecklenburg County: AJ Mennear—Bronze Medal
  • New Hanover County: Cortney Quinn—Silver
  • New Hanover County: Scott Shaffer—Bronze Medal
  • New Hanover County: James Ryan Meehling—Gold Medal
  • New Hanover County: Steven Smith—Silver Medal
  • Watauga County: Maria Weaver—Silver Medal
  • Watauga County: Jessica Penley—Bronze Medal
  • Watauga County: Elizabeth Presnell—Bronze Medal
  • Watauga County: Trenton Williams—Silver Medal
  • Watauga County: Catlin Bray—Bronze Medal
  • Watauga County: Andrew Bryan—Bronze Medal


Doubles Competition:

  • Mecklenburg County: Robin Callaway and Sara Hibbits—Bronze Medal
  • Mecklenburg County: Ted Hula and Charlie Brown—Silver Medal
  • Mecklenburg County: AJ Mennear and Forrest Johnson—Gold Medal
  • Mecklenburg County: Mia Allen and Katie Degnan—Silver Medal
  • New Hanover County: Steven Smith and Sean Berg (UP)—Gold Medal 
  • New Hanover County: Scott Shaffer and Samuel Bradshaw (UP)—Bronze Medal
  • New Hanover County: James Ryan Meehling and Noah Berg (UP)—Gold Medal
  • New Hanover County: Cortney Quinn and Shanna Bradshaw (UP)—Gold Medal
  • Watauga County: Jessica Penley and Maria Weaver—Gold Medal 
  • Watauga County: Elizabeth Presnell and Trenton Williams—Silver Medal
  • Watauga County: Catlin Bray and Roachel Laney (UP)—Fourth Place
  • Watauga County: Andrew Bryan and Keron Poteat (UP)—Fourth Place


Others in the Special Olympics North Carolina tennis delegation included: Watauga County: Keron Poteat (Head of Delegation); Mecklenburg County: Jeff Beard (Coach); Mecklenburg County: Bob Bowler (Coach); Mecklenburg County: Nancy Callaway (Coach); New Hanover County: Laura Quinn (Coach); New Hanover County: Billie Fitzsimons (Coach). Several family members also made the trip to support and cheer on the North Carolina Delegation.

The 2017 Special Olympics North America Tennis Championship was hosted by Special Olympics South Carolina. The 2017 Special Olympics North America Tennis Championship was supported by the Professional Tennis Registry.

About Special Olympics North Carolina

Throughout 2018, the Special Olympics movement is celebrating 50 years of joy, courage and empowerment. Since 1968, the organization has used the transformative power of sports to improve the lives of children and adults with intellectual disabilities. Nearly 40,000 athletes in North Carolina inspire thousands of coaches, sports officials, local program committee members and event organizers involved in Special Olympics statewide.  SONC offers year-round training and competition in 19 Olympic-type sports on local and state levels as well as health and wellness initiatives to improve the health status and increase access to community health resources for individuals with intellectual disabilities. Youth become agents of change through Unified Champion Schools, an education and sports based program created by Special Olympics to build an inclusive environment among youth with and without intellectual disabilities as well as empower them to become youth leaders and create change in their community. Visit Special Olympics North Carolina at Engage with us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube.

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