Friday, November 30, 2007

Playoffs Day 1

So the playoffs begin tonight with 4 matches.

6p (3.5)
Oakridge v. Oak Creek and Greenhill v. Stonebridge

7:30p (4.0)
Springpark v. BH/Bartlett and BH/Pearlman v. Stonebridge

I think all these matches will be close in fact I would be surprised to see any 5-0 sweeps and maybe not even any 4-1 decisions.

I have to go with the team that starts with "O" in the first match and if Jason Fraser plays I will take Greenhill if not I see Stonebridge squeaking it out.

Sorry OC BL I hate to go pro country club but I see a Brookhaven sweep tonight which would be two upsets but I just have a feeling.

Best of luck tonight.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Playoffs 2 DAYS Away

Thanks for your spirited conversations regarding ratings. I have always been perplexed by the rating system but I do think the longer your play the more accurate the ratings become. I am sure they are always attempting to tweak the system so they are as accurate as can be.

But the playoffs are two days away and there are some good teams at each level who I think can win. From the previous poll it seems everyone agrees High Point is a lock at 4.0. Why? Is there any 4.0 team out there who will come out and say they can take them down? The 3.5 poll showed Garland, Oak Creek and High Point as favs and I believe that but as much as I knock Oakridge (just for fun) I think they could score an upset. I do hope someone in the blue flight goes undefeated because I hate a flight being decided by differential instead of who beat who.

At 3.5 as much as some of you have thought I have been unfair in my thoughts I truly think there are 5 out of 6 teams that would win this tourney at 3.5. I do think the Blue Flight is stacked and all those matches will be tough. I would love to watch a Garland v. High Point final because they gave us one of our only losses last year and I would love some payback. I would also like to see Oak Creek v. High Point because these two had a great match on the opening weekend of the season and I think both teams have gotten better since then. And of course I would love to see our Oakridge Boys make it to Sunday and get a shot at High Point. All that assumes the darkhorse Greenhill or longshot Stonebridge don't mess up my Sunday afternoon plans.

4.5 should be fun too as there are three good teams the only bad part is it might be decided early as Fair Oaks plays Oak Creek in the 1st match. The loser of that match will have to hope for no undefeated teams in order to remain in contention.

Monday, November 26, 2007

RATINGS ARE OUT!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The new year end ratings are out. They have not posted it on the TX site yet but if you go to "Find a Rating" on the tennislink site you can view your new rating.

You can also appeal online immediately and the process is very easy. I earned a 4.0 rating and tried out the new online appeal option to see how it worked and I was "DENIED."

So I guess I better lose some weight and get in some drill classes. Let me know if you see any intesting names I have only checked my own so far.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

New Topic (before that last one catches fire)

As much fun as Oakridge bashing is I will take Jonathan's advice and move on. Still a little while to go before ratings and the playoffs but if you have a chance check out this story from one of our links regarding the 3.5 that won nationals this year. For those of you have issues with the current rating system feel free to get on this site and there are two contacts at the National USTA office that will take comments and suggestions. Jason Freeman of the TX champ team noted this team was head and shoulders above the other teams at Nats. My old team in So Cal played them at Sectionals and had similar things to say.

Team of 3.5 Self-Raters Wins Nationals

Do you think the USTA Dynamic Computer Rating Program might need some parameter adjustment, when it Dynamically Disqualifies honest, enthusiastic Computer Rated Players who have played at the same level for years, and then allows a team of Self Raters to win Nationals?

A team consisting of 11 Self Rated players, out of the total 13 players, advanced to, and won the 2007 3.5 National Championship! Unbelievable! Eleven Self-Raters, one 3.5 Benchmark, and one player with a 3.5 Mixed Doubles only rating.

7 out of 8 players from this team in the National Final were Self Rated.
The 2 singles players who played at Nationals, Self Rated Vincem Munoz and Raffy Bautista, never lost a match - from the local season all the way to Nationals.
Self Rated Nelson Toledo won every match all the way to Nationals and won one and lost one at Nationals.

You can go to TennisLink, at and look up USTA Team Number 6518356658, and review all the 2007 season matches for this team.

Do you think maybe USTA is starting the Self Rated players with a rating number that is too low within their self rated level?

Should a Self Rated player even be ALLOWED to come in and win all their regular season matches against the thousands of players who have played for years at the same level and have never even been to post season play?

Contact USTA and let them know what you think!

Monday, November 19, 2007

News and Notes (Oak Ridge smack talk and ratings very soon)

Congrats to Bob Somabut’s High Point 7.0 Mixed Doubles team who was the runner up to Nor Cal this weekend in Las Vegas. I know first hand those Californians take mixed doubles seriously, we even had DQ’s in Mixed Doubles back in So Cal.

Keep an eye out this week as the year end ratings should arrive, I am hoping by tomorrow. For some interesting thoughts from USTA Texas check out the Houston Tennis Blog in which the blogger has asked the USTA to look into blatant sandbagging. There is a 5.0 team there so blatant about getting back to 4.5 they named their team "Danny Four Five." Some people have no shame.

Also this weekend the Ladies Fall Championships took place and the winners were:

3.0 Royal Oaks
3.5 Stonebriar
4.0 T Bar M

And I would be remiss if I didn’t repost some comments from the Oak Ridge team on a older post in which I referred to them as good tourney players but not quite good enough to hang with league playoff teams. Meowww!!!

Anonymous said...
What a bunch of pussies. If you've ever had to play 8 to 10 matches on a Friday through Sunday before, you wouldn't even mention that those tournament guys don't have what it takes. Also that team doesn't have any ringer type people, like jeromi or eddie hill, as they have proven records from the last year in the tourneys. Most every other team that is in this league has at least one or more sandbaggers on their team, so instead of trying to smear the only legit team, why don't you clean up yours.
November 18, 2007 7:26 PM
Anonymous said...
Nice language. Didn't really help you make your point.I agree with your comment that tournament play is difficult especially if you play singles and doubles.But don't fool yourself that any playoff team has no players that could be questioned as playing below level.I assume you are referring to Oak Ridge 3.5, but am unsure because Eddie Hill didn't play 3.5 this USTA season.
November 18, 2007 9:42 PM
Anonymous said...
What players do people think are ringers or sandbaggers at 3.5?

Friday, November 16, 2007

4.0 Playoff Preview and odds to win the weekend (I’ll take bets)

High Point (3 to 1)
I have to put them at the top since you can’t go against the sectional runner-up with the exact same roster plus a few good additions. Still no guarantees at singles but there isn’t any mega ringers among the 6 teams so that shouldn’t be an issue since they should at least earn a split each time out. I think it will come down to them or the Lakes winning this tournament.

Lakes (6 to 1)
This team although they made it to the QT tourney last season is somewhat of a surprise to me but a few good additions here and there and this team is rolling along and will get a chance to show just how good they are and I think they will do well although I am not convinced they are extremely deep at doubles but Jobe looks to have moved from singles to help shore up the doubles group and Ramesh Balan is a tough player. I think they will depend on singles to carry them through this tourney but they have a good group with Runda, Jobe, Tran and Valtierra.

Brookhaven/Bartlett (10 to 1)
I would love to rank them higher especially since they came from our flight but they have a lack of depth at singles that will hurt them. Don Buford should account for a win just about each time out but past that Archer and Lazarra cannot pull off victories at this level. They have some great doubles teams though so if they can get a split at singles these team can be in the mix each time out only needing two doubles wins.

Springpark (15 to 1)
Flight B may not have been stacked with power teams but they were undefeated until the final week with their sole loss to #2 Lakes so I think they are about even with Bartlett’s group. This ranking is mainly earned from making it to Sectionals in the Spring. They did lose Walters and Erickson so they weakened them at singles and doubles but they are still a strong and experienced team that should do well but now lack a little depth to contend with the top two teams.

Stonebridge (25 to 1)
This team is a lot like Bartlett’s group in that their singles play may hurt them but there is no denying they have some good doubles teams but then again so does everyone else in the playoffs so that is why I have to rank them this low. Singles players Nix and Ruiz will keep them in the running though since I just don’t see any singles superstars in these six teams.

Brookhaven/Pearlman (50 to 1)
I know they fought hard to get into the playoffs but I just don’t see this team being able to stack up against the better teams. Other than Renwick and Chiu this team’s biggest strength is being consistent which was enough to get them through the regular season but I just don’t see the weapons that can have them come out on top of this list of teams. Also as much as I like my team if we beat them I find it hard to think they could beat out the top 5 teams in the league but they should be congratulated on bouncing back from a bad start to make the playoffs.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

3.5 and 4.5 playoff schedule (updated)

So here are the 3.5 and 4.5 schedules along with odds for the 3.5 group. No need for odds at 4.5, Branch is even money with T Bar and Fair Oaks with a slight upset chance and LB Houston merely coming hoping their is free beer provided by the DTA (of course that is same reason I am coming out to watch)

4.5 Round Robin schedule

Saturday matches:
12p: T Bar v. LB Houston and Oak Creek v. Fair Oaks
Sunday matches:
10:30a: T Bar v. Oak Creek and LB Houston v. Fair Oaks
1:30p: Oak Creek v. LB Houston and T Bar v. Fair Oaks
3.5 Schedule (Odds to win)
Blue flight:
Oak Creek (6 to 1)
Oak Ridge (45 to 1)
(2 to 1)

Red flight:
High Point (3 to 1)
Greenhill (10 to 1)
Stonebridge (35 to 1)

Friday matches:
6p: Oakridge v. Oak Creek and Greenhill v. Stonebridge

Saturday matches:
9a: Garland v. Oak Creek and High Point v. Stonebridge
3p: Oakridge v. Garland and High Point v. Greenhill

Sunday 3.5 Final
12p Winner of Blue v. Winner of Red

Monday, November 12, 2007

4.0 Season complete (Almost…)

So the Flight B playoff teams were already decided but Lakes and Springpark played each other for 1st place in the flight and the Lakes prevailed 4-1. Lakes won both singles matches in close straight set fashion, then gave up line 1 doubles and won lines 2 and 3 in tiebreaks. Lakes is the only 4.0 team to finish undefeated this season and looks to be cruising, they don’t have any ringers but have solid play from top to bottom. I have seen and played against some of this group before and they are good. Mike Runda has been one of the consistent singles players for them and he is a tough competitor with a big serve which gets even tougher on important points.

Flight A saw Stonebridge lose their final meaningless match and slip to 2nd place and High Point Somabut won a must win match v. LB Houston 4-1 with one win by default. Joel Pickett won in straights at line 1 singles and the rest of the matches went 3 sets so this was tougher than expected but they prevailed and earned a playoff spot. That win eliminated the other High Point team captained by Adrian Giuhat.

Flight C is still pending but some teams have been eliminated. Before Saturday 5 teams were still fighting for two spots but with the results posted so far Garland and Lifetime have been eliminated from playoff contention. These two had a close match Saturday with Garland prevailing 3-2 (I am sure Jonathan can give us a rundown on this match) but it was all for nothing as Brookhaven Pearlman passed by both of them sweeping JCC in their final match. Currently the two Brookhaven teams will advance but 5-2 T Bar M still has two matches to play (JCC and Brookhaven/Bartlett) and they must win both matches and they will advance along with Brookhaven/Bartlett.

We will just have to wait and see but I believe they are required to get this match in before Monday so I will update as I see it posted.

Friday, November 9, 2007

3.5 Playoff preview

It seems like forever until Nov 30th but I will go ahead and post this up for lack of matches to talk about. (I guess we will have new ratings to talk about around 11/20)

I will be interested to see the pairings for the tourney but here is what I expect (just my guess on past pairings)

Flight I
Garland, HP and Oak Ridge

Flight II
Greenhill, SBridge and Oak Creek

And here are my pre-playoff thoughts.

3.5 Playoff Rankings

1. Garland
Undefeated and only lost Vijay Singh from their runner up finish in the Spring. Even though they lost Singh they gained Oberto. I think the difference with them will come down to Delira. This is probably his last hurrah at 3.5 and he has come up with great results in the playoffs but has also had some really bad results (I watched him get trounced by Rob Bliss in Spring 06 (6-2, 6-1). If he plays well they will be tough to beat but without strong results from him I am not as confident in their chances to finish on top.

2. High Point
Hmm. We lost 8 players off of the sectional team, one got his appeal through but we moved up 5 players from our 2nd team who had a 6-2 record in the Spring so they are experienced. Strong addition of singles specialist Di Zhao will help in that area as well. Although not as strong as our previous group I like the makeup of this team even better, there are three consistent doubles teams and three strong singles players that almost seem interchangeable. Also the bench players are very capable of stepping in and making contributions. Sorry I can't put them 1st but I don't want to be a total homer.

3. Oak Creek
Old and crusty but good enough. I haven’t seen the new dominant doubles team (Yauch/Rivera) but they should account for one win v. just about any team in the tournament. After that the doubles talent drops off a little to just good unless OC decides to split them up to disperse their strength. Singles now lands on the shoulders of Marc Klamecki, he must get a win each time out or I worry about their chances. Marc is strong but if he runs into a pusher he could get in trouble. Not sure who will be a regular in the #2 slot behind Marc, maybe Barnhard but line 2 singles will be important for them.

4. Greenhill
I like this team and would have them rated higher if not for the stronger and younger teams at the top. Greenhill will rely heavily on their doubles strength to do well. Their roster reads like a senior all star team at doubles but singles is pretty much John Sims and Jason Fraser, both solid players but not guarantees to win. If they can get a split at singles I like their chances but don’t see them being able to win a match unless they can grab at least one singles match in each match.

5. Stonebridge
This team continues to hang in there and returns just about everyone if I am not mistaken from their Spring team that made it to the QT tourney in the Spring. Too bad them and Garland look like they will not play a rainout match, I would be interested to see how they match up. They will probably go as far as Fitzpatrick and Ackerman can take them. They don’t have much at singles after that although Greg Barats is solid. Kevin Dooney, Ruben Muniz and Jim Bostick are probably their best doubles players. I think this is a good team but not enough firepower to contend with the teams at the top.

6. Oak Ridge
Jeromi should be happy I listed this team last. Truly nothing personal in fact I would say they could be tied with Stonebridge at 5th. I know a lot of these guys play tourneys but league tennis playoffs is a whole other animal. I took a talented team to this tournament last year and ended up 0-3 in our flight. I look at their results and roster and they all have good results but nothing stands out to say they can contend with the big 3 at the top. Prather and Girder have some good results but these teams squeaked by a few teams that were weak in the C flight. I did like their win v. Greenhill but Sims didn’t play that match and Terry Newman was playing singles, I would have liked to seen that match with Newman at doubles and Sims playing #2 singles.

4.5 Early playoff preview

I am no expert at 4.5 tennis (have you seen my serve, eek?) but here is my humble opinion on the 4.5 playoffs. Please feel free to chime in upper level players out there. I am interested to catch a match or two that weekend, can you say Tri-Level recruiting???

Ok here we go:

4.5 Playoff Rankings

1. OC/Branch
Kind of hard to rate them lower since they have won this league for I am not sure how many seasons running. With James and Walker playing singles most of the way and doubles teams that have wins at the sectional level it will be hard to pick against them. But I am an underdog lover so I cheer against the Yankees, Spurs and Patriots so I have to root for another team to knock them off this time around.

2. T Bar M
This could be the team to beat OC this time, they beat them in the regular season but I am curious how “real” those results are but I don’t think these guys are light years behind. They have a huge roster so they maybe hiding some players of their own. They also have some players coming down from 5.0 much like Branch’s group so they should at least make it interesting.

3. Fair Oaks
Surprise team of the season and I don’t know what to think but I plan on checking out one of their matches to see what is up. I have seen their two 4.0 rated players before (Gervelis and Russell) as well as former 4.0 Robinson. Seems like their strength actually lies at singles with Jeff Wells, Chris Pak and Corey Noel. I think they will need to win a lot of singles matches that weekend in order to do any damage because I just don’t see that much amazing doubles results that could contend with the top two teams here.

4. LB Houston
Hard to rate them any higher than this spot since they lost their last regular season match v. OC/Feldman and at the time that win would have clinched a spot instead they got some help from Greenhill to get into the playoffs. Definitely some quality players but I don’t see them scoring any upsets. They will mostly be hurt by lack of good singles play, many matches they won 3-2 by dropping both singles matches. With that said the obviously have some good doubles players and I guess will be in a lot of 3-2 matches but at this level it will be tough to sweep the doubles matches.

Monday, November 5, 2007

4.0 playoffs shaping up (1 week to go…)

Flight A:
After a great start and also a big win over Somabut’s team HP/Giuhat’s playoff hopes are all but over with a loss to Stonebridge. HP took both singles matches but lost all three doubles matches. Only line 3 was close as it went to a tiebreaker. Stonebridge qualifies with this win. The 2nd spot comes down to the two High Point teams, Somabut’s team is in with a win and Giuhat’s team needs a win and a Somabut loss in order to make it in.

Flight B:
The Lakes and Springpark had strong outings this weekend to both improve to 8-0 and both qualify for the playoffs. They have a match against each other this weekend but it is meaningless as far as advancement is concerned.

Flight C:
Brookhaven Barlett bounced back after their first loss of the season taking out Lifetime 4-1. There were some close matches but in the end a 4-1 victory secures a playoff spot for Brookhaven. In the most interesting playoff chase the 2nd spot is available to four different teams (BH/Pearlman, Garland, Lifetime and T BAR M) T Bar and LF both only have two losses so they have the best shot but BH/Pearlman and Garland still have good tiebreakers to get in with 3 losses. Garland had a hard 2-3 loss v. Pearlman’s team Saturday as former 3.5 Kyle Rhodes handed Trey McKinney his first loss of the season. I have no idea what will happen here and T Bar has 3 matches to play somehow, all against teams that have nothing to play for so that will benefit them. The Garland v. Lifetime match should be very competitive and probably produce the 2nd playoff team.

3.5 and 4.5 Regular season over (Playoff teams set)


Flight A:
Fair Oaks dropped a meaningless match and wins their flight with a 7-1 record. OC/Feldman beats Greenhill but not convincingly enough so they finish 3rd behind LB Houston who will be the 2nd playoff team from this flight with a 6-2 record.

Flight B:
T Bar M rolled over Canyon Creek to secure a playoff spot along with playoff regular OC/Branch.

These four will play a round robin at the end of November with Branch’s team being the early fav but T Bar M has to be in the conversation since they beat them two weeks ago.


Flight A:
High Point was able to bounce back after their loss to Westlake and beat Gleneagles 4-1 to secure 1st place in the flight and end Gleneagles’ playoff hopes. I was at this match and it was close for a little while. Both line 1 and 2 doubles went to 3rd set tiebreaks and High Point was down in both of those tiebreakers but rallied to win. Trae played very well to take out previously undefeated Aamer Ravji. Oak Creek swept out Canyon Creek to secure the 2nd spot and complete a great comeback after dropping to 2-2 early in the season.

Flight B:
Garland swept Lifetime to finish undefeated and Stonebridge took out Brookhaven securing their playoff spot and dashing the hopes of Brookhaven who will miss the playoffs for the 2nd straight season.

Flight C:
Greenhill won the big match up with Springpark only dropping one line to Jeromi Kelsey at line 1 singles. As predicted their doubles were just too much for Springpark. Greenhill finished tied with Oak Ridge at 7-1 who will be the other playoff rep.

Now we just wait to see how the RED and BLUE flights break out. These are six good teams and any one of them has a shot. Early fav would have to be undefeated Garland.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Big matches this weekend

So obviously the biggest game is Colts v. Pats this weekend (GO COLTS!!!) but in our own little world of league tennis there are some big matchups.

OC/Feldman v. Greenhil (a big win sends OC to the playoffs)
T Bar M v. Canyon Creek (a CC wins should get them into the playoffs)

Lifetime v. BH/Bartlett (Both tied with 1 loss, winner will be set up for final week of season)
Garland v. BH/Pearlman (Garland has been on a roll but so has Pearlman's team)
HP/Giuhat v. Stonebridge (winner will be in 1st place and sitting pretty for the playoffs)
Springpark v. Greenhill/Arnette (Greenhill needs a win or they are eliminated)

HP/Bowman v. Gleneagles (HP just needs just two individual wins and GE needs a win)
OC/Smith v. Canyon Creek
(OC has been on a mission and needs one more win and some help from HP to finish their comeback after the DQ of Ahner)
Springpark v. Greenhill
(This match will decide the 2nd playoff team in this flight, the loser will stay home)


1st Annual USTA Masters Tourney

There is a lot of tennis going on this weekend and looks to be great weather. For you tournament players there first annual MASTERS tourney takes place in Austin, starting tomorrow AM.

Dallas reps:

4.5: J.D Miles of Canyon Creek: he has Odion Dibua and Reader in his round robin section. If he could make it out of the first two days I would think the final maybe a breeze. Any thoughts?

4.0: Jason Warren of the Village: he has good results against some of the top players, I wouldn't be shocked to see him to do well. Big guns Janek and Kern will be tough but Kern is in other section so there could be a clash between the two in the finals.

3.5 John Kraemer and Eddie Hill headed down to represent Dallas. They are in seperate flights so who knows it could be an all Dallas final. Kraemer has Nguyen and Dutchover in his section which means there will be plenty of defensive tennis going on there. Eddie should do fine in his section and meet up with one of these three in the final. I think Eddie will win the weekend.

Let me know what you think of any of these guys, I know Jonathan has played many of them and has wins over a few of them as well.