Sunday, August 1, 2010
Sectionals Wrap Up
Not sure if Team Branch feels like this but it made me think of the Red Sox who had sniffed success for many years but never actually got what they were looking for. I know there is still one step to go for the big title but "getting" to Nationals is an extraordinary achievement. This team continued to amass talent over the years and this year it just seemed like it all would come together, I had doubts when Kern joined the Noho underground club but it turned out OK in the end. Congrats to all of them. The 4.5 tourney seemed stronger overall with teams like Waco making the semis and both San Antonio teams making it through and leaving the three Houston teams on the outside looking in.
But enough about those guys who know how to play tennis, 4.0 did not disappoint with a number of good surprise teams as well. In Flight 1 San Angelo not only won the flight knocking out the Houston Hurricanes and then went on to make the finals v. Lubbock. Who picked that one?
In Flight 2 Waco stormed through to take that flight undefeated getting past San Antonio and Austin. I will say Caleb told me he had confidence in this team to go far so at least one person picked that one. Their run ended in the semifinals.
In Flight 3 a flight handpicked by Greenhill/Wild Dallas, things started off well for them with two shutouts but there are no style points in tennis and a tough match v. Austin on Saturday morning took them out of contention entirely. That was a tough way to go out I am sure. NETX, Dallas and Austin finished in a 3 way tie for first but Austin had the tiebreakers mainly due to their 4-1 win over Dallas. Singles play seemed to be the difference in this flight.
In Flight 4, the 2008 Texas Champs returned many players for the 2010 version of their team and added a strong line 1 singles player in Lance Coleman and never seemed tested in this flight. Wild Houston and Lifetime had hopes of sneaking past but this Lubbock team seemed determined to go far and left these two teams searching for answers.
In the end it was Lubbock who essentially returned the same team from 2008 and will represent Texas again in 2010. I know there was a little back and forth regarding how this could possibly happen but I didn't do in depth research but just on a glance their 2009 match results seem pretty on the level, it is more curious how their 2008 sectional results and National results didn't keep them at 4.5. It was interesting to look at the Springpark v. Lubbock 2008 final. All 8 players on the Springpark team are now rated 4.5 and I think Gene might be 5.0 very soon if not already. In contrast only one player Tyler Chadwick is rated 4.5 out of that Lubbock 8 man lineup. Conspiracy?
I wish them luck on the next level, it will be curious to see if Lance Coleman survives the dreaded Monday computer run because they will need him to be competitive at Nationals.
I have to give it up for the smaller cities this weekend who showed up Big D and Houston. San Antonio probably had the best showing from all the big cities that came to Dallas this weekend.
Now all in Dallas start all over again to work towards August of 2011.