A Kagay-anon tennister helped her school to a runner up finish during the Big West Tournament held Sunday, April 28 at Indian Wells Tennis Garden, California.
Although Roxanne Resma, the daughter of Misamis Oriental provincial veterinarian Dr Benjie Resma, in tandem her University of Hawai’i team mate Michelle Pits lost their doubles match, 6-2 to the Long Beach State 49ers No. 2 team of Natalia Munoz and Lalita Devarakonda, their team mates made up with UH's top duo of Petra Melounova and Nikola Dolakova holding off Wiktoria Rutkowska and Dominique Meyer by a break, 6-4,and their No. 3 team of Alzbeta Houbova and Maayan Sela capturing the point with a 7-5 win over Carlota Casampere and Zara Lennon.
In her final match as a Rainbow Wahine, Roxanne quickly dispatched LBSU’s Zara Lennon in straight sets, 6-2, 6-1. But the Beach's Sadaf Sadeghvaziri defeated UH's Houbova, 6-3, 6-2. UH's 60th -ranked and No. 1 Melounova dropped the first set, but came roaring back for a 3-6, 6-0 ,6-4 win over Rutkowska to give UH a 3-1 lead. Long Beach State won the last three singles matches to overcome a 3-1 deficit for the title.
The loss snapped UH's seven-game win streak. The defending champion Rainbow Wahine have finished second in the Big West Tournament in three of the last four seasons.
According to her dad Benjie, Roxanne started her tennis training early when she was but six years old with Coach Boyet Talatala at the Capitol Tennis Courts.
“Even with Coach Boyet, nag-sugod nako og dula sa tournaments while training with him,”Roxanne recalls. “After a few years, I already needed more hitting partners and more players to play matches with.”
Later, Roxanne was mentored by Coach Jonelle Llavore whom his students fondly called “Dada”.
“Dada helped with my training. Iya ko gi-kupkop and gi-tabangan with my tennis. The Nazareth tennis courts became my home for most of my junior career,” Roxanne said. “Dada was the one who pushed me to train hard and even accompanied me to a lot of the tournaments locally and nationally.”
Eventually, Roxanne was recruited by the Philippine Tennis Academy (PTA) based in Manila when she got to high school.
To enable her to continue training at the PTA without compromising her studies, Benjie said she was enrolled at and graduated high school from Corpus Christi School in Macasandig, Cagayan de Oro City.
“She was granted special privileges by Corpus Christi with a modular type of curriculum because she was based in Manila and even had to leave the country when she had matches scheduled abroad,” Benjie recalls.
“So I was still enrolled in Corpus but I was in Manila full time,” Roxanne added. “Sir Del Fierro, the teachers, and Corpus Christi school were kind and understanding enough to allow me to do a home schooling program to pursue my tennis career.”
The routine meant she spent most of the days of the year in the PTA training in Manila or traveling aboard for competitions. Then she would go home for a week to take her exams and afterwards, fly back again.
“PTA opened the doors for me. They took a chance on me and helped me develop my game even more. They gave me the opportunity to play abroad and earn a world ranking in juniors.”
Although her highest world junior rankings was around the top 200, it was enough for her to land a full athletic scholarship at the University of Hawai’i some 5 years ago where she became a regular member of the UH Rainbow Wahine, thanks to her PTA coaches who recommended her to the UH Tennis Coach whom they were friends with.
“So I’ve been here in Hawaii for 4 years. I finished my undergrad degree in sports marketing and I’m doing my masters in public administration. I actually just finished my last college match ever last Sunday. We lost in the finals of our conference but I won my singles match,” Roxanne noted.
Asked if she had any plans of turning pro, the budding Kagay-anon tennis prodigy replied: “Realistically speaking, no. I’m not planning on going pro.”
So far, her future plans hinges on a summer tennis clinic on Chicago she plans to go to and she would decide what she wanted to do after that.
“But honestly speaking, I wanna take a break for a bit. Haha, I think I’m a little bit overworked after all these years. Just a quick break then bakbakan na ulit!”
Good luck on the future Roxanne. Cagayan de Oro is proud of you.
Roxanne, 21, is the only daughter of Misamis Oriental Provincial Veterinarian Dr. Benjie Resma and Mrs. Monette A. Resma of 7/12 InsideOut Travel & Tours. They have two other children Aaron, 24, and Elijah, 10.
Receive email updates from Mindanao Daily News.