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Avila Bay Club To Host Vince Dente Memorial Tournament

Facility Spotlight: Avila Bay Athletic Club

This holiday Memorial Weekend is easily the biggest weekend of the year for the Avila Bay Athletic Club with the playing of the Vince Dente Memorial Tournament.

Avila Bay Club Director of Tennis Michael Marquez is in his second year running the 43rd annual event, easily one of the longest-running and popular events played on the Central Coast.

Just scroll through the list of entries via the tournament TennisLink website at and you are sure to find familiar Southern California men’s and women’s open, college and junior players.

“For years, Mark Scribner ran the event and after Mark both Hugh Bream and Paul Fiala teamed up to run it the past 14 years,” said Marquez. “We have a big player BBQ and Tennis-Warehouse is one of our largest sponsors and they give out gift cards to the players. Southern California players just love playing this event.”

The Avila Bay Club has seven lighted courts and a balcony for optimal viewing. This weekend’s weather should be perfect for tournament tennis.

“The Avila Bay Club is an amazing club that is settled in a small canyon just off the US Highway 101 and two minutes from the ocean,” Marquez said. “We have an amazing micro-climate that averages 84 degrees and no wind. So it’s just perfect for playing conditions year-round.”

There is $8,5000 in prize money at stake for players. Sanctioned Events include Men’s Open singles and doubles; Women’s Open singles and doubles and mixed open doubles. There is also an NTRP Men’s and Women’s A (4.5), A-(4.0), B(3.5), C (3.0) in singles and doubles as well as senior age divisions, as well as a new UTR round-robin event in its first year. (Read more about it HERE).

Players in the Open Division include top-seeded Isaiah Strode, Alex Ventre, Jacob Brumm (Cal) and Jacob Bullard (USC bound) on the men’s side, and former college stars Maegan Manasse (Cal) and Allie Will, a two-time NCAA team champion from the University of Florida.

2017 winners were former USC Trojan EJ Johnson on the men’s side, and current Trojan Angela Kulikov on the women’s side.

The tournament is held in memory of Vince Dente, a local philanthropist and avid tennis player. Soon after his untimely death at the age of 39 in 1996. The following year the Vince Dente Junior Tennis Foundation was created to help support aspiring junior tennis players in the area.

Dente is an important figure in Central Coast tennis. According to his obituary in the Coronado Eagle, Dente was born and raised in San Diego County. He passed away suddenly in 1996 following an aneurism at the young age of 39 while in Palm Springs for a convention. A renowned jeweler, Dente and his wife Kathleen lived in San Luis Obispo for 11 years where he owned the Serengeti West jewelry store. He sponsored the Serengeti West Tennis Classic, what was formerly known as the Avila Bay Classic.

An avid tennis player, Dente donated the prize money for the professional open division, and gave out watches to winners at all levels.

To learn more about the Avila Bay Club, go to:

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