KCTA 2023 Awards
Kern Community Tennis Association recently recognized Sandy Matthews as the KCTA 2023 Person of the Year and Laura Rice with a Legacy Coach Award. Sandy was honored for her 24 years as the Chairperson and Treasurer of the Ladies Interclub League. The league has been in operation since the 1970s and is a key contributor to the spirit of cooperation that exists in the Bakersfield tennis community. Each year, Sandy and her team devote hundreds of hours to operate the best league in town that provides the camaraderie and competition that thousands of women of all ages have enjoyed. As those who have worked with Sandy can attest, no detail is ever too small.
Laura moved to Bakersfield when she was recruited to play for the CSUB women’s tennis team. After a successful college career, Laura went on to be one of the best recreational players in the area, including 14 consecutive County Doubles Championships and being a member of the 1994 USTA National Open Mixed Doubles Team. Laura coached for several years at Bakersfield College and local clubs before joining the Ridgeview High faculty in 1999. She served as the JV coach before becoming the head varsity coach for both boys’ and girls’ tennis in 2007. Laura also heads the PE Department. Although many of her players are first exposed to tennis during their freshman year, her dedication enables Ridgeview to consistently field competitive teams. Her players are known for their love of the sport and respectful attitudes. Laura has changed hundreds of lives in her more than three decades as a youth coach.
Pictured from left to right are Robert Limpias, KCTA President, Sandy Matthews, Laura Rice, and Hank Pfister.