The Run/Roll tennis sport club tournament began in Georgia nearly four years ago and has since spread to cities across the country.
Texas State’s tennis club has made San Marcos one of those cities.
The club hosted its second semi-annual Run/Roll tournament Saturday.
The Run/Roll is a doubles tournament that teams able-bodied and wheelchair-using players to compete against other participants in one-day events.
Alex Scharton, political science junior, saw an opportunity to bring the Run/Roll tournament to Texas State after he competed in San Antonio and Austin events.
“I went out, played and really enjoyed myself,” Scharton said. “I decided I’d really love to host a Run/Roll at Texas State.”
Scharton, director of the tournament, put his plan into action last spring when the tennis club hosted its first Run/Roll tournament. The competition marked the first time a university hosted the event.
Texas State’s tennis club became the first group to donate all of the profits to charity. The club donated more than $1,000 to finance a new wheelchair for 12-year-old Nathaniel Montemayor. The club raised the same amount prior to this semester’s tournament and continued to receive donations during and after the competition.
However, raising money for charity is not the only reason Scharton enjoys running and participating in the tournament.
“All of us athletes are really fortunate to not have a disability,” Scharton said. “It’s really cool to see some of the chair players out here and they’re really inspiring. Some are even better than the able-bodied players.”
Julie Maloukis, Austin resident, has been playing in Run/Roll tournaments for three of the four years it has been in existence. Maloukis and her partner Ryan Almaguer, criminal justice freshman, did not make it through to the final match at the San Marcos event, but they still enjoyed themselves.
“It was fantastic,” Maloukis said. “I had a blast.”
Maloukis has played at events with the Texas State tennis club on four different occasions and admires what they are doing with the tournament.
“What is so amazing is that they don’t have to do this,” Maloukis said.
Almaguer enjoys playing in the tournament because it provides a different aspect of the game.
“It is definitely interesting because it is a whole different game of tennis and you really have to depend on each other,” Almaguer said. “It’s one of the most rewarding tennis experiences I’ve ever had.”