We had an exciting women’s doubles tournament 2017 and a breezy May Saturday. The ladies battled it out in a round robin format with all the teams having extremely close matches. Three teams tied with a record of 1-2 and one team eked out a victory in three close matches to distance themselves and assure a place in the finals. That team was Vicki Miceli & Karen Dixon. The other finalists had to be decided by counting the number of games won and after tallying the totals, Karely Deal & Tess Gill edged out Diane Cooper & Sumiko Imay-Lindsay as well as another good team, Hillary Bibicoff & Caroline Rook.
The final started off tense with the women exchanging five breaks of serve before Vicki and Karen established themselves with a hold of serve by Karen, followed by a break, and another hard won hold by Vicki. The points were long and both teams showed great poise under the pressure of playing in front of a fifty-person crowd. Ultimately, Karen and Vicki played a more aggressive brand of tennis that allowed them to take control of the points. Despite good defense, the conditions favored the harder hitting duo and they wound up with the victory, 8-3. Congrats to our champions, finalists and all the other participants for throwing their rackets into the court and accepting the challenge of tournament tennis! Our next grand event is our Bring-a-Ringer, so find a partner and sign up today!
Wow, this men’s doubles final was one to remember. Blustery conditions, bright sunshine, and many unpredictable twists and turns in a two hour affair that started out looking like a forty-minute walkover for the three-time finalists, Andrew Horen and Brandon Boyce. The veterans established themselves early with a solid hold followed by a quick break of serve against the newest challengers, Raul Hernandez and Ryan Sokolowski. The momentum kept with Andrew & Brandon for the rest of the set as they ran Raul and Ryan off the court 6-0 in less than thirty minutes.
In the second set, Raul and Ryan immediately held serve to stop the march toward a double-bagel, however, after some hard-fought games that were much closer, Brandon and Andrew were still better on the big points and built a commanding break-lead at 5-2. With nothing to lose, Raul and Ryan seemed to loosen up as the other guys felt the pressure of closing out the match. Raul blasted his patented forehand by and Ryan blasted big first serves, to storm all the way back and take the second set with a flurry of great shot making 7-5.
Going into the third set, some of the steam had come out of Andrew and Brandon as they could feel the anxiety that comes with letting a lead slip away and allowing an almost defeated opponent to have new life. Raul held easily in the first game of the third, then Andrew managed a hold after being down break point to tie things a 1-1. They continued along with one break and two holds each to arrive at 3-4. All the players were showing signs of fatigue, but the level got better as Andrew hit an amazing “tweener” past Ryan, but still lost the game to make the score 4-4. It was Andrew’s serve and he came up big, keeping Ryan and Raul in defensive mode and allowing Brandon to attack the net. In the tenth game Andrew and Brandon kept attacking and so did Raul and Ryan. The game went back and forth with errors on tight shots and winners when it counted. Then after a match point went begging, Andrew hit a big backhand and forced an error to seal the deal. Congrats to Andrew and Brandon for a well-deserved victory: 6-0, 5-7, 6-4 to become the 2017 Men’s Doubles Champions of the Marina City Club. A huge thanks to all participants and spectators who makes these events special.