Monday, February 20, 2017
4.5+ over 40 - the tight race that was anticipated is holding true to form. Six matches in with five remaining there is no team that is undefeated so far. Oak Creek/Sweeney and Brookhaven/Harllee are the only one loss teams with OC holding a slight line lead even though BH beat them head to head. In third with two losses is Lifetime Fitness/Arcaria and Greenhill/Rossouw. The big question is what happened to JCC/Reiman? 4-3 at the halfway mark isn't a typical JCC season.
4.5 is at the halfway mark and 4.0 is already done. Is that right? Seems so. Advancing out of the two 4.0 flights are, in order of strength of record, Oak Creek/Ramasami (6-1, 27-8), Springpark/Walters (6-1, 26-9), Canyon Creek/Patterson (6-1, 21-14), and Huffhines/Clark (5-2, 24-11). Oak Creek had a dominant season until the last match of the season against CC. Having already wrapped up first place in their flight they lost a tight 2-3 match. Does that match have a different conclusion at city playoffs? This a much more competitive field than in years past but I'm not yet sure if that's because Dallas is weaker or there are just more good teams.
9.0 over 55 has Oak Creek/Sweeney clear of the field at 7-0 and having already beaten second place and one loss Brookhaven/Bartlett. Gleneagles/Juhn sits alone with two losses and could still work their way back into the mix.
8.0 over 55 has a very similar look with Greenhill/Kayser sitting alone and undefeated (with a mighty impressive 17-1 line record to date), Springpark/Blesi alone with one loss, and Lifetime/Heflin alone at two losses. Greenhill and Springpark square off the last match of the season so it could come right down to the wire.
Wednesday, February 15, 2017
Sorry I didn't get out a preview and I'm a little late on my post-view but I got called out of town on work for about nine days and was swamped. Just got back so here we are. I hate it when my day job gets in the way of tennis.
What to say? Dallas had an unbeatable tri-level team but it didn't make the finals. It actually does happen. Everyone is beatable. Admittedly, I really felt like Dallas would win and from looking at the results I still think Dallas could have won, but it didn't happen. It's amateur tennis. Anything can happen.
For those of you not following along at home, NOHO took the final in a closer match than I would have anticipated. They look to have been built on some good 4.5s, 4.0s that we've seen a lot of, and good but not great 3.5s. Definitely not a lock at the 4.0 or 3.5 lines so good job by NOHO getting over the top in some close matches. But that is probably the theme from this year's tri-level - closer matches than I would have expected.
I actually got back into town Monday evening and could have posted something earlier but I was generally surprised by some of the match results on tennislink so I tried to make a few subtle inquiries of people who were there or might know something. That was largely a confusing bust. This person is a cheater, that person had dumb lineups, these people dumped, somebody is mad at someone else, we should have won, they weren't very good - exhausting. The one thing that I did hear a few times that seems to explain a lot was that the level of play at tri-level this year was maybe higher than in years past across the board. That seems to make some sense.
No team at this year's event went undefeated. Four teams finished 3-1 in their flight. No team went winless. Knowing some of the players and how good they are, it just looks to me like it was a very competitive event this year.
As for Dallas, they beat San Antonio 2-1 after splitting three setters at the 4.5 line (win) and 4.0 line (loss). They swept Lubbock, then lost 1-2 to NOHO losing the 4.0 and 4.5 lines. They finished with a sweep of Austin. All in all, not a bad finish but if Dallas wins one more line in any match it advances to the final over NOHO. Their 4.5 lines went 3-1, their 4.0 lines went 2-2, and their 3.5 lines went 4-0. So for the event, Dallas only lost three lines and two of those were in three setters. Pretty close.
Quick shout out to the Dallas guys on the Fort Worth team. They went 2-2 for the weekend. Not bad for a bunch that won Fort Worth by a razor thin margin.