Tuesday, September 29, 2009

High Point headed to Vegas (Go TEXAS!)

So this is the first weekend of Nationals and High Point will attempt to bring home the crown and then Eddie can claim he beat them on one hot sunny afternoon.

I will not pretend to breakdown the teams in their flight but it will be interesting to see how they stack up.

Some of these guys have been to Nats before but doesn't look like this core group has broken out of flight play in a little while but the crafy Puerto Ricans are always something to watch. I see them finishing middle of the pack but they do seem to have better doubles players so it might be a mirror image match when they see HP although I like Dencil and Craig to come out with singles going HP's way.

This section won 4.0 mens last year and it looks like it came from the same tennis club. That starting 8 who won are all at 4.5 now but it can't hurt to play national champs every so often to get ready to win it yourself. It looks as if they have been very careful with their singles guys and have not lost anyone to DQ, etc. I expect this to be a very tough team.

New England:
Also looks pretty solid. To get to Vegas they dominated pool play at the sectional championships and look to have a very tough customer playing line 1 singles.

This team should have some trouble but I hope Bob is not tempting to pull and Eddie and have the starting group watch from the sidelines and put in Brouer. Just kidding Steven. :) But seriously this team is their last match and if they are still in the mix it might come down to style points.

I think it will come down to the Seattle team v. High Point. If they can get out of this pool who knows because Sunday you never know what can happen. I have a feeling the winner of this flight might come out with one loss.

Best of luck guys!

Monday, September 28, 2009

4.5 Week in Review/Sunday Preview

A lot of meaningful matches occurred this week. The two teams I predicted to play for the fall championship lost their first matches and Northwood pulled the upset over Royal Oaks.

Flight A

Brookhaven quietly moved to 2-0 with a second win over a High Point team but the top teams of the flight are clearly Feldman and T Bar. Greenhill will have a tough time rebounding from the loss to T Bar. If they could somehow beat Feldman later this season, they could force a 3-way tie.

Oak Creek and T Bar play this Sunday for first place in the flight. Winner should be a lock to make the playoffs and most likely win their division.

Flight B

Northwood beat Royal Oaks in what should be the battle of the top two teams. I would say neither team probably had its best lineups but I expect both to make the playoffs. Bovermann and Lifetime squeaked by in their opening matches but both will have tougher tests in Week Two.

NANCY v. EDDIE has to be the feature match in terms of the blog. An improved Juhn team takes on Bovermann in what should separate the contender from pretender.

Flight C

High Point lost (I think) as did Brookhaven in huge upsets this week. The Lakes was expected to be a solid team but not quite to the level of the other two teams. I would like to give LB credit for winning but several of Brookhaven's top players were MIA.

A severely depleted Oak Creek team makes its season debut this week against Brookhaven. Lakes should stay undefeated and it will be interesting to see how LB does against Hackberry.


Feldman d. T Bar 3-2
Northwood over Lifetime 5-0 (You know I had to say it.)
Brookhaven rebounds to beat Oak Creek 4-1
Juhn over Bovermann 3-2


3.5 Week 3 in Review

Fretz redeems themselves leaving a bitter taste for the Boys of Huffhines.

With most of the rained out matches being made up, clarity begins to take form in some of the flights.

Flight A

No surprises here with Westlake and Garland still at the top of their flight undefeated. (I've seen this movie before.....wasn't it these two against each other last Fall??) Garland gets their win against High Point with a 3-2 victory, losing both singles and winning all 3 dubs. C'mon Big John. Not one singles win?? We know your hiding a ringer in that roster of yours somewhere. Also, Wiley plays against his old captain Patrick Jameson in line 1 dubs. I wonder what exchange of words were said during change overs ?!!

Westlake also gets their win with all 3 dubs and losing both singles. A potential weakness for Westlake?? .....we shall see.

Upcoming week: No exciting match ups this week in this flight.

Flight B

In the big match up of the week, Fretz redeems themselves and knocks off Huffhines in their first match. The loss comes with Huffhines losing all 3 of their dubs, a kink in their armour from last Spring. Fretz now stays in the hunt of this flight with a 2-1 record. High Point Entrekin leads the flight 3-0, (??? wow!!) followed closely by Gleneagles who now is looking pretty strong with wins over Fretz and Greenhill.

Upcoming week: Big match ups in this flight with undefeated Gleneagles playing HP and Huffhines playing Greenhill. More clarity will definitely be seen a week from now.

Flight C

Canyon Creek quickly falls from glory losing 0-5 in their make-up match against Oak Creek, and then falling 3-2 against Brookhaven, losing 2 3rd set tie-breaks. Oak Creek and Brookhaven are now 3-0 and pretty much seem to dominate this flight. Lifetime remains "Lifeless" with another loss and a 0-3 record.

Upcoming Week: Not as exciting as flight B with Oak Creek having a Bye, but perhaps the Brookhaven/Sam Grand match. Brookhaven should get this in dubs but may struggle with Sam Grand's singles lines.

There you have it guys. Blog away...........

Thursday, September 24, 2009

4.0 Week 2

So technically it is week 3 but I am going with 2 since the first one was a washout. Sorry for the late write up but this week has been hectic for me, I actually have to work at "work", what is this world coming to.

Flight A:
SWAT team has a doubleheader that might just decide whether we are going into a full on rebuilding session as we take on the LB Houston and then the Lakes on Sunday. But a great match between TBar v. Greenhill should be great. TBar is another team like SWAT who lost a good chunk of their core and are feeling the pain but they will be tough to beat.

Flight B:
I think we can give 1st place to Garland and now we can figure out who is fighting for 2nd that starts with Eldorado v. Greenhill. Greenhill started out strong but will need to avoid slip ups and same goes for Fretz.

Flight C:
Great MOW here as Village takes on BH/Pearlman. Their Spring season finale ended with the Village making it to the playoffs by beating them and I wonder if the same result won't occur this time around. I am going to have to go with Village since I think they will take both singles and scratch out a doubles match.

Flight D:
Not anything spine tingling here but Springpark v. Brookhaven will be interesting for a little while until BH rolls on. Garland v. Stonebridge will most likely define one of these teams as a contender or a pretender.

Good luck this weekend!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Wanted: 3.5 Blogger

Wanted: 3.5 Blogger
Pay: Non Existent
Work Conditions: Terrible
Perks: None
If you want to be in the eye of the storm this Season,
email: marc@uswebsitedesign.com

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

4.0 Week 2

I say this week we play rain or shine. I think I might have forgotten how to keep score it has been so long.

Flight A looks pretty run of the mill this week. I was hoping to see how week 1 shook out to see how this week's matches would look but no luck there. If I had to pick an interesting match to watch it would be TBar v. Lakes. This will tell us if TBar is taking a step back or not. My guess is the Lakes will take this one but not by much.

Flight B
Yet again too early to tell what will happen here but OC v. Greenhill should show us if Greenhill will be in the playoff hunt or staying at home again.

Flight C
Nothing to get exicted about here, will be interesting to see how Burt's BH team starts out the season. Garland/2 had some good upsets last season not sure they can pull one here.

Flight D
I had to give this flight two MOWs and I think they might have one every week. I like the LTF v. OC match up. Can LTF be out of it by week 2, hard to imagine but it might be the case. HP/Bob will be tested in their first match as a retooled Stonebridge team looks to make it back to the postseason after a little drought. I like HP in this one but it will not be easy.

Monday, September 14, 2009

4.5 Preseason Outlook

Hey everybody,

The 4.5 division is a little slow going so I thought I would open up the discussion with some predictions. We still have one more week of scrimmages before the actual season starts and I have to say, three flights makes this league much less exciting. It really does make the fall seem like an inferior league with only 6 official matches in two of the three flights.

4.5 A

By far the toughest flight in my opinion. This is the only flight that I actually see coming down to the last week to determine playoff teams.

Collin County--A few new faces but I would assume they will still be anchored by Henson and Hixson at line 1. Sean Bay's tournament experience should start to pay off and I expect this team to be slightly improved over last season.

High Point/Bazan--The blogmaster has not really improved his team over last season but I think his main focus is helping his players get as much match experience as possible to succeed at the 4.0 level. A couple of strong singles players but not in the same league as the other top teams.

Oak Creek/Feldman--The defending champions of last fall will look to repeat. I think the only team with a smaller roster than mine. Zero new players but should have the same strength with Durten, Viktorin, Stein, Feldman, and Thompson all contributing. Where's the Buffalo?

T Bar M--Very similar to the roster that ended up in the Flight of Death last season. This flight is a little easier. Will be interesting to see if T Bar will continue to use JD in big matches despite his poor record. Russ is back from 5.0 with Colby, Jehan, and Doug all looking to play key roles.

Greenhill--No additions from last season but no defectors either. Only key missing from this team is that lock at line 1 doubles. Griggs and Howard are very solid at singles but doubles let them down most of the season. If dubs can improve, this team will be very hard to beat.

Springpark--This team has lost two of its best players from last season in my opinion and didn't bring in anybody to replace them. I look for a drop in performance with everybody else trying to pick up the slack.

Brookhaven/Ludwig--Only 3 or 4 legitimate 4.5 players will make this team an easy out for opponents. Unless they have somebody I don't know about, singles will be a real struggle for them every week. Mark can play everybody close but besides that, I don't know who the singles players are?

High Point/Somabut--I actually think this team will surprise some people and finish in the top half of its flight. I don't see them competing with the top teams in singles but I expect competitive matches all season in dubs. However, there's also always the possibility of score management???

Order of Finish:

1. T Bar M
2. Oak Creek
3. Greenhill
4. Somabut
5. Collin County
6. Bazan
7. Springpark
8. Brookhaven

4.5 B

This flight seems pretty set but surprises can happen. Not sure from whom though.

Oak Creek/Bovermann--Solid players all around the roster but no real impact players except for maybe Thadius. I expect them to be tough in every match but inconsistent lineups have hurt them in the past.

Royal Oaks/Rothwell--Another roster smaller than mine. The loss of Molina and Andrus will really hurt this team's chances to advance through the playoffs but John always seems to find somebody to fill in the gaps. Greg Zachary is also MIA. Always interesting to see how the roster fills out with them.

DFW Hilton--Doubles has steadily improved on this team over the last few seasons. The return of Huffman also gives them an almost guaranteed win every week. If Hamish returns from last season, they could have a very strong 1-2 punch at singles.

Northwood--This captain doesn't know what he's doing but I suspect a couple of more roster additions before the season begins. Loss of McCord and Fair to 5.0 will really hurt but Hawkins, Young, Xu, Wells, Mason, and, dare I say Noel, are all coming off solid seasons and will look to continue that trend.

LB Houston/Ratana--A couple of new players this season (Tom how could you?) should help this team but the departure of Forrest and Mark can't help their cause. I really like Ken and he deserves to have a successful team and if he plays like he did against me in the Brookhaven dubs final, he should win every week. Still too many 4.0s to make a serious run though it seems.

Oak Creek/Juhn--A couple of new players but mostly the same roster from seasons past. Frank is always good for several wins and this team has shown the ability to beat other strong teams in the past (i.e. High Point last season). Look for them to be in contention.

Lifetime--Another team of 4.0 bumpups. I don't think they will do quite as well as Bob's 4.5 team (let the hate mail begin). I see a former Branch player on the roster though with a very limited match history and Dante, Forrest, and Johan have all shown they can do well at the 4.5 level.

Order of Finish:

1. Northwood (I wasn't going to do it but I have to)
2. Royal Oaks
3. Bovermann
4. Juhn
5. Lifetime
6. DFW
7. LB Houston

4.5 C

Another flight that is strong at the top but not quite as much depth as Flight A. Familiar teams will vie for the top position.

Hackberry--Strong doubles players highlight this team and the addition of Andrew Pretty (presumably in singles) will help them. Although I have to say, if his results are as I think they will be, expect a protest from somebody.

Oak Creek/Herget(Branch)--A new captain but roster is roughly the same minus the 5.0s. Outside of Slezak and Braswell though, the absence of Kiron, Branch, Kern, and Wesley James (who could still join right?) will make this team far less of a threat than last season. But it's just the fall right?

Brookhaven--Very strong team that retained Carl, David Hall, Ramos and Laselle who anchored their team last season. Hard to imagine them not returning to the playoffs.

High Point--So much for the loss of Phy hurting them? No Dustin yet either (is he 5.0?) but Rudy Peters joining the roster of other strong players from last season should make this team a force in the fall. Lineup decisions will be key for this team with so many players who can play singles or doubles.

The Lakes--Oberg and Pollock are the strengths of this team again but I'm not sure where the other wins will come from against the top teams. Singles players seem to be missing from the roster too unless more additions are to come.

T Bar/Snow--23 players on this roster for only 6 matches. That averages to about 2 matches per player. Not worth it for me. A lot of solid players but a lot of weak ones too. Best lineup can be competitive with most teams in doubles but singles will be a struggle.

LB Houston/Baird--A few people have laughed at me when I said to watch out for this team but I feel like a few ringers will emerge off of this roster. Still need a couple of more role players to fill a lineup but I expect strength at the top of this lineup.

Order of Finish:

1. Brookhaven
2. High Point
3. Oak Creek
4. Lakes
5. Hackberry
6. LB Houston
7. T Bar

Playoff Teams:

T Bar, Northwood, Brookhaven, High Point, Royal Oaks, Feldman

High Point over Brookhaven in the finals.

Friday, September 11, 2009

4.0 Week 1 (Rain?)

So I am calling on your weather geeks, I know you people are out there that check the radar on your phone every few minutes. We are calling on your predictions to see who will get to play this weekend.

I have a back up plan of visiting Elmo at the My Gym in Frisco (Lebanon/Legacy) 10a-2p on Saturday.

If the matches do happen here are some good ones.

Flight A:
Lakes v. SWAT 3pm @ Lakes
A rematch of a very tough Spring match that almost knocked us out of the post season. I expect another tough match. Last year we played on a Thursday night due to a rain out hopefully that doesn't not happen again. Will the Mighty Greenhill/Russouw team drop a set against the new Stars team, I heard they are going for all bagels, how cruel are they????

Flight B
Don't expect too much action here other than to possibly see who will be a bottom dweller here. I will be interested to see if Garland will be tested at all v. Fretz who isn't a bad team.

Flight C
Canyon Creek v. BH/Pearlman is a little spicy but BH should pull out a close win to get going on what should be a good season for them. The Village is a popular pick to finish near the top but they lost to Garland/2 last season and I am not so sure it might not happen again. Upset alert!

Flight D
BH v. Lifetime could be interesting. I know LTF lost a lot of players but Brinkman, McAfee, Gonzalez Moore, and Shahab are still on this team oh yeah and Bennett too. Oops I forgot Yoshi and the Hulkamaniac Gerber as well. This team will be a threat and I am picking them to win this match.

So here is hoping we get to play this weekend. If not feel free to come visit a fabulous Blockbuster store at Preston/Lebanon. (Yep BMO and Brandon, I moved come drive 5 minutes East and see us) USTA discount? Maybe?

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Ft Worth Fall League

Ft Worth Fall Leagues are starting this week-end with the highly unstable 1 Singles 3 Doubles format.
So here is the Fall Pre-season Preview.

3.5 is split into a Red and Blue Divisions.
Total of ten scheduled matches, first match Sept 19.
In the Blue Div the favorite should be the RTC Coyotes, Followed by the Southlake Racketqueers,
(really, you have to expect that if you name your team the Racqueteers, what were you thinking?)
Watch out for new comers Robson Ranch, which is apparently a retirement community in Denton, I will leave the jokes up to you.

In the Red Div nobody really stands out, ATC choked in the spring and had several of their players bumped but still has fielded a decent team, TCU seems to have a deep team as well. These two maybe as good a pick as any.

4.0 is Split into two divisions Red and Blue
Total of 6 matches with a Flighted 16 team draw post season tournament.
First Match Sept 12th
Blue Div (Suburban Div)
This flight is all the teams east of I-35W.
Of the 3 RTC teams, RTC Wylie look the toughest.
Southlake has managed to put together a large team, but with only 6 matches and 4 lines I expect there will be some unhappy players on this team.
The dark horse favorite - Team Flower Mound, Keep your eyes on these boys in both the fall and the spring.

Red Div
Both McLeland teams have fled that hole and are at the Arlington TC now, Look for the Old Gang to put together a Salty crew for the Fall.
Look for one of the TCU teams to compete with them.

6 Teams 10 matches
First match Sept 12
I fully expect TCU to dominate this Division.
There are almost as many 4.0's in this division as there are on a Garland/Sisk 3.5 team.
if any of you bumped down 4.5's need a 4.0 team give me a holla!
Note: Good to see the LTF West in Collyville finally get a men's team.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Fall 4.0 Preview

Wow doesn't it seem like we just finished a season? Oh well might as well get out there while the weather is freaking amazing and before it turns freaking cold (i.e. DCC Fall Playoffs December 11-13, can you say parkas and hot chocolate). Of course it is North Texas so it could be 90 degrees that weekend.

Oh not enjoying me rambling about nothing, sometimes I do that. OK. OK. I will talk about tennis now. If anyone is up for taking over 3.5 threads, email us your resume and salary requirements. No offer is too low. Now...onto the show.

4.0 Fall Season
(37 teams with almost 400 players, that is awesome, thanks to all of you for putting together teams and having a monster big season)

Flight A
This flight is pretty wide open. The SWAT team was decimated by appeals so they are in a rebuilding season so who knows what they will look like but will be in the top tier of favorites along with the Lakes, TBar (also decimated by bump ups) and new team Greenhill/Russouw should do well here. The rest of the flight will not be laydowns as Thorntree showed some fight in the Spring. Stonebriar is also a question mark it usually just depends on who comes out each week. Dallas CC also looks to be recruited well with some 4.5 bump downs and other strong players. Lucky Thunder has taken on a 2nd team called the EL Stars and hopes to make some noise in this flight but it will be a tough climb.

Flight B
This flight seems like it should be decided early with Garland coming out on top. They had a good run in the Spring and miraculously did not lose anyone to their roster. I think they will end up losing most of this roster to 4.5 but in the meantime they will do some damage. I think the big three of Obannon, Defeo and McFarlane will be too much for this flight. Fighting for 2nd place will be Fretz, OC2 and Greenhill. I think the other teams can pull some upsets as well. The Royal Oaks team and Canyon Creek teams are good but not deep enough to make it into the top tier much like JCC. I do expect Fretz to challenge for 2nd place. They had some good bump ups and Dan Robison's old team has joined forces with Cloninger and Smeithesler (sp?) playing singles they will be tough.

Flight C
I will have to pick Brookhaven to do well in this flight but they did lose some vital singles players so this will not be easy for them at all, they will have to play well each week. I believe the Village was in Burt's flight last season too (hmmm....) and I have a feeling they will be close behind again this season. Other teams that will make life difficult for these two teams are Lakes/Rockettman and HP/Bearden. The rest of the teams lack some firepower to do any real damage although I would keep an eye on Gleneagles as upset special.

Flight D
You know before solitaire was played on a computer and you realized you forgot to shuffle the deck well take a look at this flight (OC, LTF and Springpark) deja vu, these are the same very good teams that played each other in the Spring in....you guessed it: Flight D. Because of that I thinking this flight will be strong again. Oh yeah and then throw in the combo Brookhaven team (Bartlett/Helterbrann) and oh I almost forgot that nationals bound captain Bob Somabut has a team in this flight. The early polling has HP/Bob and OC making it out of this flight but I think with all these teams there is bound to be some upsets and down to the wire playoff races. Oh and I almost forgot Stonebridge is in here too returning Shaun Nix from 4.5, with he and Cocoran they will be tough to beat in singles and they already have good doubles teams but might need some more players.