Mcc Mixed Doubles Tennis Tournament 2018 Recap

Wow, what a day of mixed doubles tennis! With forty players (20 teams) entered, Priscilla and I had our hands full trying to make this many folks get tennis matches in on our six courts. We organized a round robin format with tiebreakers to decide the seedings in the main draw. At the end of the tiebreakers we shifted the teams into a single-elimination draw with those having the best records getting the highest seedings. This made for true seeding based on results that morning, however, the draws did not hold to the seedings, which was a testament to how strong and close the teams were in abilities.

Mixed Doubles Tennis Tournament 2018

In the Gold Division, after some tough sets leading to the finals, things settled out with the team of Mitch Levine & Julie DeMayo battling Mitch Reinis & Karely Deal for bragging rights over the next twelve months. The match see-sawed through the first set. Numerous lengthy games that went to deuce led to the inevitable tie-breaker. The points continued with extreme consistency, clever angles, and monster “Mitch” smashes. In the end, Julie and Mitch edged out the first set. In the second set, it appeared that Julie and Mitch settled down to a better rhythm, while Mitch and Karely continued their defensive onslaught. After another half-hour, Julie and Mitch were able to outlast and outgun Mitch and Karely in another hard-fought set. The final score was 7-6, 6-2 in a match truly worthy of a Gold Division final. Congrats to Mitch Levine & Julie DeMayo our 2018 Mixed Doubles Gold Champs!

Julie, Mitch L, Mitch R, Karely

In the Championship Division there were some experienced, hard-hitting teams battling it out. After the seeding round, Brandon & Danielle Boyce came out as the top seeds along with Colleen Moryl and Israel Mora. However, in the main draw the seeds were turned on their heads with newcomers, Adeline & Robert Cook dismissing Israel & Colleen in the quarterfinals. On the other side, the Boyces were dispatched by another set of newcomers, Lisa-Marie Petersen and Casey Cook in the quarterfinals.

In the semi-finals, Casey & Lisa-Marie continued to show good form with Casey’s youthful power and Lisa-Marie’s rock-solid steadiness (always a tough doubles combination) to dismiss pre-tournament favorites Robert Rudelius & Donna Leventhal in an entertaining match. In the other semi, Lockard & Cook showed their experience against two powerful and skilled players in Adeline & Robert, by playing steady strong defense and keeping errors to a minimum.


Casey, Lisa-Marie, Linda, Cookie

It shaped up to be quite a final, with a father versus a son ala Star Wars. The younger Cook and Lisa-Marie, came out blazing with a strong hold and an immediate break to start the final. However, the elder Cook and Lockard buckled down for a long, bumpy ride by using Casey’s pace to effectively counterpunch along with some clever changes of pace, they countered to build a 5-2 lead. However, Casey & Lisa-Marie weren’t going away easily. They stormed back to 4-5, forcing Cookie to serve out the set. After a tense 30-30 point, Linda & Cookie arrived at set point. A big serve decided the set in favor of Cookie & Linda.

The second set saw Casey relax and use his heavy topspin to push their opponents back on their heels. In addition, Lisa-Marie show fine hands both at the net and on the return, cutting her errors in half as she adjusted to the pace. After some close games at the beginning of the set, they built a 5-2 lead of their own and never relinquished it, ending the set with hold of serve that saw Casey overpower both Cookie and Linda to win 6-3.

The final set was a ten-point tiebreaker. Cookie served first and immediately fell behind off a missed forehand. Then, Casey held on both his service points, followed by a heavy return down the middle that earned Lisa-Marie and Casey a quick 4-0 lead. That lead quickly evaporated as Linda and Cookie buckled down and eliminated all errors. They proceeded to win eight points in a row and closed out the match on Cookie’s serve, 10-7.

Congrats to Linda Lockard and Sean “Cookie” Cook for a well-played event!

Special thanks to Priscilla and Angel for their assistance with getting the food out for the semis and finals. The crowd for the matches was great today and of course, without the players, there is no tournament. Please keep looking for the upcoming events and participate, participate, participate! Events like this give Mcc it’s unique flavor and you always meet new people when you join us for these tournaments and interclubs. Our next event is the La Jolla Tennis Trip on May 4-6.

Championship Division Group A

See you on the courts!



Stretching vs. Dynamic Warm-Up

Stretching is important. Very, very important, if you want to avoid injury and play better, more relaxed tennis. Tight muscles lead to nerves, which inhibit quality play under match pressure. There are two types of stretching:
Static & Dynamic.
Dynamic Stretching is movement-based, also known as, loosening up or warming-up before playing. Some examples are arm circles (shoulders), jumping jacks, light jogging, neck circles, wrist circles, knee bends, and various other stretches where you do not pause or hold in one place. I have a great battery of dynamic stretches for the legs, shoulders, arms, neck, and hips. I may not get to all of them, but I try to hit every major body part with at least 2-3 dynamic movements before going on the court. You should be especially aware of warming up joints and muscles where you have aches and are prone to injury. Do these stretches gently as they are not meant to be intense, but quite the opposite.
Static stretching is what we think of as more traditional stretches, like pulling your elbow behind your head, touching your toes, or pulling your arm across your chest in the crook of the other arm. You hold these stretches from 20 seconds to 2 minutes. They alleviate tightness and generally create greater flexibility in the stretcher. However, static stretching should only be done after you exercise, when muscles are warm and coming down from intense exertion. The ideal time is right after you finish playing. This prevents soreness and for me, it helps me sleep better as unstretched muscles ache more at night.
Ask any of our members who’ve had a major injury and they’ll tell you, stretching and strengthening is the key to staying injury free. For me, stretching is the top method and strengthening comes in second. So, right after you play, drop down and stretch your muscles for better tennis.

Gene’s Tennis Tip – February 2018

Doubles, the version of tennis most commonly played at the club level has a few basic strategy components that are decided before the match even starts. The main one is which side of the court (deuce or ad) the players on the same team will play on when the opposition serves. Many times this decision is last minute, with little or no thought given as the players say, “Well, I don’t care, I’ll play either,” followed by the other player repeating those words, then someone shrugging and taking the deuce side.

Basic rule: the stronger, more consistent backhand goes on the ad side and the stronger more consistent forehand on the deuce side. If one player is superior in both experience and skill, then typically, that player takes the ad side because the majority of game points (40-0, 40-30, & ad) occur on the ad side. Only one (40-15) game point occurs on the deuce side, so there’s less pressure on the deuce side for the weaker player. The player on the ad side needs to show consistence on the return of serve so that they make the opponents earn all game points with quality shots. Clear the net and keep the return cross-court.


The exception to these basic strategy rules is when a player is dead-set on playing one side. Let them play that side. It will keep your partner happy. Happy partners play better. If possible, be flexible about which side you play, as this will make it easy for you to play with different partners throughout your tennis life. Also, I recommend playing the side you like less sometimes for the practice, so long as you make your partner aware that you are not great at the deuce side, but would like to practice it if that’s okay with them. Most players (unless you are playing for money) are fine with this arrangement, especially at the club level. A good player placement strategy leads to happy doubles!

Pickleball Clinic at Mcc

We had another wonderful Pickleball Clinic with our Pickleball Ambassador from Santa Monica Doug Nichols on the Mcc Paddle Tennis Courts. Doug explained the rules as a group of experienced players, including our own Robert Rudelius, Leslie Howard, and Gene played an exhibition match to introduce those in attendance to the intracies of the game.

Leslie, Barbie, Linda, Nancy at Mcc Pickleball

These included the scoring (you only score when your team serves like volleyball used to be), strategy, the kitchen, and other goodies this lovely game has to offer. We have pickleball paddles and balls in the fitness center for members to check out. Make your way down with a friend to the paddle tennis courts and have a go at the game that’s sweeping the nation!  Gene is happy to take you out and show you and some friends how to play if interested he will set up another private clinic at your convenience.

Upcoming Manhattan Beach Junior Tournament



Don’t forget to enter the MANHATTAN BEACH WINTER JR OPEN(LEVEL 5)

Location:  Manhattan Beach

Tournament ID: 650020918

January 27-28

Deadline: Tuesday, January 23rd

Skill Level: Advanced

Click to enter:

Boys’ & Girls’ 10,12,14,16,18 and under Singles & Doubles

Tennis Holiday Party 2017

Well, we just capped off another amazing Mcc Tennis year with our annual holiday party. Louis and Chef Jesus along with the amazing Mcc Restaurant staff created a delicious buffet and a great price for the players to devour in the Galaxy Room. Everyone looked stunning in their holiday best attire with their special someones on their arms. Everyone’s non-tennis spouses who we rarely have the pleasure of seeing also joined in the festivities, making this a unique evening for our tennis program.

Gene recapped the winners from all our tournaments for the year, then announced the year-end awards. He also thanks the various captains, staff, and the tennis committee for their hard work in 2017. In the Smoothest Stroker category the winners were Massoud Djabbari & Susan Jolley. For Best Serve, the winners were Donna Leventhal & Robert Rudelius. In the Best Dressed category Ariel Sotolongo & Hillary Bibicoff won the honors. For Most Improved, Tess Gill & Russell Smith demonstrated that working hard on your game pays off. Finally, in the Sportspersonship category, Arnaud Dunoyer & Leslie Howard came away with a can of new tennis balls.  All the awards had multiple nominees. We thank the members who took the time to nominate and vote for the various year-end awards.

Please take a look at the 2018 Tennis Events Calendar and let Gene know if you’d like to be on his email list going forward. Let’s have a special 2018.

Palm Desert Tennis Trip 2017

The Mcc annual tennis trip of Palm Desert took place November 3-5. The plan was set to meet on Friday night for casual drinks and food at Rancho Las Palmas, the same resort where we planned to play mixed doubles on Sunday. The great thing about this event is the chance to meet new Mcc members who joined the trip and make friends at a club in the desert with new scenery surrounding a familiar thing we all love: a tennis court! We enjoyed drinks outside in the cool desert air while a reggae band played and tiki torches illuminated our faces.
On Saturday morning we ventured over to Ironwood Country Club, a very beautiful tennis and golf community on the north end of Palm Desert. Marc and Pas hosted us with coffee and doughnuts to get our blood sugar up before we hit the courts for men’s and women’s doubles matches. Pam and I paired the teams according to levels and encouraged everyone to mix around after playing a couple sets. Everyone had a good time playing on the green on green courts in the dry, eighty-degree sunshine. After the tennis, eleven of the players and spouses convened at Il Corso for a light lunch before going off to relax for the remainder of the afternoon by the pool or as was so generously offered by Jim Puerner, to watch some top college tennis at the Tennis Garden of Indian Wells. I saw an amazing men’s doubles semi-final in the national ITF Fall Tournament between Texas and Wisconsin.
On Saturday night, we ventured over to Vicky’s of Santa Fe, a wonderful California cuisine restaurant in Indian Wells. The restaurant had excellent food and drinks and were very accommodating to our group. The décor was southwestern and spacious. They also had live blues and dancing until 11pm. We took photos and exchanged tennis war stories whiles seeing some old friends who had moved to the desert years ago.
Sunday was the end of daylight saving time, so we got an extra hour of sleep before tennis at 11am. Mixed Doubles at Rancho Las Palmas can’t be beat. The beautiful, modern facility welcomed Mcc with open arms. Special thanks to Joan Hall and Robert, who set the matches up in advance according to our levels. Once again we enjoyed excellent tennis and comradrie with our sister club. I hope you can join us next year for the desert trip on November 9-11, 2018.

Marina City Club Sip ‘n Serve Tennis Starts tonight!

We have our Sip ‘n Serve class starting tonight (11/2) at 7pm on court #1. Cost is $25 for non-members to drop in and join the class. Music, tennis, and fun, what more could you ask for? See our sip ‘n serve page here for more info

We play tennis from 7-8:30pm then go up to our club restaurant for drinks / food from 8:30-9:30. Hence Sip ‘n Serve. Really it’s serve ‘n sip, but it sounds better the other way!

Sip ‘n Serve Tennis is Back for Winter session at Mcc!

Sip ‘n Serve Tennis is Back at the Marina City Club (4333 Admiralty Way, Marina del Rey, 90292) for the following dates:




Sip ‘n Serve will be held on court 1.  Cost is $25 per class or you can buy the series of 5 classes for $80.


Members of Mcc get the class for $15 / class or $50 for the series.


Class is 7-8:30pm with sippin’ to start at 8:45 in the Mcc Restaurant.


Come by and see friends, play tennis, and have a drink plus some chow.


Parking Note: Follow the yellow line to the guest parking on the first floor of the parking garage. Park there, exit the same way you entered, go to the left and up the stairs to court #1 which is on top of the parking. If the top level is full, you must drive to the bottom of the structure where there is lots more parking. Exit the stairwell and go up 1 ½ flights to the street. Turn right through the breezeway then right again and up the stairs just past shipping & receiving (where the bathrooms are) to court #1.