4.5 came down to the Brookhaven/Harllee versus Village/Valentin match. Too bad it was the first match played at 8:00am on Saturday morning. Brookhaven won 3 -2 and the two teams split three setters so it could have gone either way, but the real story was a singles sweep by Brookhaven. As they showed, it’s usually not too difficult to pick up one doubles line. While Brookhaven’s doubles lines at #1 and #3 both lost close matches, their #2 line won its match easily. Smith over Castro 4 & 6 then Toscano over Khaing in three was the difference.
The remaining 4.5 matches went to form. Oak Creek took down Sam Grand 4-1. In round two, Brookhaven swept Sam Grand and Village beat Oak Creek 3-2, leaving Brookhaven firmly in the driver’s seat. The Village versus Oak Creek match was interesting only in the fact that Village defaulted a line and still won 3-2. While the final results look like it was smooth sailing from there, Brookhaven beat Oak Creek 4-1, they actually won three matches in the third set and one match in a second set tie breaker. Brookhaven looks to have been battle tested this weekend and I’d expect them to do well at City Playoffs next weekend.
4.0 was a bit of a different story. There were six teams in two flights with the flight winners playing a final to see who advances to cities. The Red flight had Eldorado/Browning going 0-2, 2-8 for the weekend so it really came down to Brookhaven/Bartlett versus Oak Creek/Iyer for the flight. With Oak Creek having swept Eldorado and Brookhaven sneaking by with a 3-2 win over Eldorado, it seemed Oak Creek would advance easily. Especially since Eldorado defaulted TWO LINES to Brookhaven (of course they did the same to Oak Creek). As it turned out, Oak Creek advanced with a 3-2 win over Brookhaven winning a third set tie breaker on line 3 of the doubles to clinch.
The Blue flight was a different story. It started with McKinney/Bazan losing 4-1 to Greenhill/Ohl. There were two items of note. First, Bazan himself had McKinney’s only win and, two, McKinney defaulted line 1 singles which isn’t possible in the playoffs. The tournament directors may have missed something here. In round two McKinney/Kanchi swept McKinney/Bazan, proving that all McKinneys are not created equal. In fairness, there were three close matches in this one. Round three should have been the big McKinney versus Greenhill showdown we were expecting in the finals. As it turns out, three of Greenhill’s lines evidently forgot to actually play as between them they lost 36-7. Greenhill did squeeze out two three setters to make those lines respectable.
The final was a 4-1 McKinney win over Oak Creek. The two teams split the two close lines but three went McKinney’s way a little easier.
Now for the gossip. Evidently the Greenhill 4.0 boys were a little miffed after their match. Granted, that’s not new for some of them, but given the flack (and the Vatum DQ) that has been launched at McKinney/Kanchi I thought it worth asking about. I did not see the match so I can’t comment specifically. However, I did see on tennislink that after Captain Ohl had a stellar 8-1 season at 4.0 this year and won his other playoff match, he and Burton lost 1&0 to Timothy Mickey and a 3.5. That’s gonna leave a mark. Anyone actually see the McKinney versus Greenhill match? The only matches I caught some of were the 4.5 BH/Village tilt (I thought that might be for all the marbles) and part of the 4.0 final, just to be diligent in my reporting.
I didn’t see anything in the 4.0 final that lead me to believe McKinney wouldn’t get hammered by Tony’s 4.0 team last year. Against the lineup in the finals it would be 4-1 or a sweep. I’m sure Anthony Horsley would agree after getting beat 0&4 by Tony and Victor Tran at tri-level sectionals earlier this year, if that helps answer your question. Granted, that wasn’t the same lineup that played against Greenhill so I may not have seen the best McKinney has to offer yet. Hopefully I’ll get a chance to see that next weekend.
I haven’t scrubbed 4.5 statewide yet but with all the chatter at 4.0 I tried to take a quick look over the weekend. San Antonio and Austin look to be where they always are. Fort Worth is out this year after last year’s big run. Dallas is down but after winning it all that’s to be expected. The biggest thing I saw was Freeman looks to be somewhere between disinterested and nonexistent. This could be the easiest year for Texas 4.0 in the last ten years.
Of course Bill Sanders is still lurking in Waco. And he’s won a 4.0 national title before.