The APP is officially the new kid on campus as this past week the first-ever APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open took place at the Grand Park Sports Campus in Westfield, Indiana. In the first event and Signature Event on the APP's 2024 calendar, colleges from all over the country came together in the spirit of competition to vie for the title of champions, and $50,000 in scholarship money in this first-of-its-kind event. Thankfully, like most Gen Z-ers, the fun and highlight-reel moments were all captured for the 'Gram.
We Are the Champions: Utah Tech University brought home the inaugural APP U.S. Collegiate Championship team title as they defeated the University of Florida in the finals. Utah Tech's Averee Beck also took home the women's singles gold in the individual competition. What an experience for these young athletes!
It's All About the College Experience: So much of college life has nothing to do with the classroom - it's about the experiences, meeting new people, trying new things, and exploring life. The same could be said for this event, which brought college pickleball to the national scene. Soak it up, kids!
Pickleball is for Everyone: WNBA star Jewell Loyd took advantage of her off season to compete in the Midwest Open, and we're here for it. Let's hear it for the uber talented multi-sport athletes bringing their vibe to the APP Tour!
We Mean Everyone: It's no secret that the APP Tour prides itself on inclusively growing the game of pickleball from all levels. This is definitely a new level. Maybe Grimace will bring Ronald McDonald and the Hamburglar to the next one?
Did We Say Everyone: Blue, the Indianapolis Colts mascot, is apparently quite the pickleball player, and he made an appearance at Grand Park Sports Campus over the weekend. Anyone looking for a mixed doubles partner?
The Real MVPs: They don't get a whole lot of credit, but they always show up and that's important because without them we wouldn't have tournaments. Referees are an important part of the APP Tour and we love seeing them let their hair down...if only for a photographic moment!
We're Kind of A Big Deal: As part of the APP's arrival in Indiana, chief marketing officer Tom Webb sat down with WISH-TV to promote the event and the great sport of pickleball. Did you know the average age of pickleball players is now 35?
I Know Him: There was a familiar face on the Collegiate medal stands this week as APP Next Gen team member, Jack Foster, represented the University of Florida. The Gators took silver in the team competition, and in the individual competition Foster took gold in men's singles and silver in mixed doubles with Adele Dorion. The future of pickleball is bright!
That does it from Indiana and the inaugural APP U.S. Collegiate Championships and Midwest Open! For a full recap of the Collegiate tournament, click here. We'll be back in a couple weeks as the APP Tour officially kicks off this year's pro season with the 2024 APP Punta Gorda Open. See you soon!
*Planning to be at a future APP Tour stop? Use the hashtag #APPTour and you could be featured in a future Social Roundup!