League spotlight: Jodi Eslinger

Tennis meant more than ever to Jodi Eslinger this year. After getting hooked on competitive tennis just a few years ago, the former nationally-ranked racquetball player had a health scare that made her unsure she’d ever play again.

Eslinger, from Allentown, Pa., had a heart attack that required a surgery to implant three stents. This year, she made her way back onto the singles court.

“I feel like I’m back. I feel awesome,” Eslinger said during Middle States Section Championships in the summer.

Eslinger has become known around the league community for her unique, cutting, spinning shots. Her background as a racquetball player gives her a skillset that most people aren’t used to. Eslinger also wears gloves when she plays — another unique aspect of her game many players aren’t used to seeing.

Jodi Eslinger’s gloves have become a big talking point at her USTA League Tennis matches.

“I have a crazy swing with the tennis racquet, but playing racquetball has given me a headstart and I can really spin the ball,” Eslinger said in 2013, just a few years after picking up the game. “One thing I really like about tennis is that I have a unique game compared to a lot of other people, and everyone else who I run into on the court has their own story and something unique about their own game.”

Eslinger, now healthy and back on the court, is looking forward to much more tennis over the next several years.

“I’m happy and excited to be playing again,” she said.

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