Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The Story vs. Howe

The Lead: "Some are Fast and Some are Not"
In what may turn out to be our last regular season match of the year, we had a match of contrasts against The Howe School. Significant contrasts, especially in time of match.

On one hand, there was Wade Troyer and Hans Miller. Riding high with confidence from quite a good streak playing together, these two steamed through two sets of tennis. And when I say steamed, I mean like, in record time. Tying the record set by Seth Krabill, Wade and Hans clocked a 28 minute match, winning 6-0, 6-0. Not very many double faults or long points in that one!

On the other side of the courts was Justin Zehr. While not quite as dominating, Justin looked like he was going to cruise through his match pretty well. He picked up the first set win 6-3, and looked like he'd be able to control the match. However, in the 2nd set the match slowed down, and the points became long. Justin tried to control points by coming to the net but he couldn't quite find the finishing potion. He dropped down 3-0 in the 2nd, and then 4-1, then 5-2, and then it was a 3rd set. In the 3rd set, Justin was down 4-1, but then he started attacking his shots, hitting through the ball, really playing with aggressive groundstrokes. It turned the match around! He suddenly was up 5-4, playing for the match. But of course, we couldn't go without a tiebreak. In the tiebreak, Justin won all but 1 point. In the end, his match took approximately 2 and a half hours.

And everywhere in between. #2 doubles of Himal King and Joel Gerig got off to a rough start (falling down 1-5) but then rebounded to run off a great streak and win in two sets. Landon Weldy had a short and sweet game of consistency. Sol ground his opponent down in the second set. Colin and Roberto had epic matches, each fighting for their first win in tight contests. Ryan attacked smartly to win a JV #1 singles match. It was a fun day for these guys, and good to come out as winners!

The Hidden Narrative
The underlying story here is feet and positive focus. It was a cold and windy day yesterday, and you could visibly see the focus waning from players as they stood on the court. You could see people getting frustrated and standing instead of keeping their feet moving.

And it almost cost a couple of positions. Justin really didn't have either positive energy or moving feet at the beginning of his third set, and #2 doubles didn't have it for most of their first set. Even though both positions were playing against opponents who were not as good as them, the lack of mental and physical preparation was killer.

Both rebounded well, but it is a lesson to be learned for future varsity matches. Sometimes that is hard to regather, especially against a good opponent.

Other Storylines
- So, Hans has put away the crown of victories for a mostly JV player. With only one possible match left, he leads by two over Sol and Wade. His 12 match victories are the most since Blake Shetler had 12 in 2009 (Blake's sophomore year).

- Percentage wise, the best winning percentage will belong to Justin Zehr. His win puts him at 75% for the season. He has really improved throughout the year, and I was really proud of his comeback yesterday.

- Roberto picked up his first win of the season! Yea, Robert!

- Ryan Duckworth sealed an above .500 record for the season last night.

- Speaking of above .500, we'll have 9 JV players with above .500 records this year. Last year we had 2. Program improvement!

The Scores
#1S - Sol Brenneman - 6-4, 6-1 - Spencer Phillips (11)
#2S - Landon Weldy - 6-2, 6-2 - Matt McDonald (12)
#3S - Justin Zehr - 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (1) - Kyle Harrison (11)
#1D - Wade Troyer/Hans Miller - 6-0, 6-0 - Brett Hendricks (12)/Shenguri Ma (12)
#2D - Himal King/Joel Gerig - 7-5, 6-2 - Tom Baker (11)/Leo Samara (11)

Junior Varsity
#1SJV - Ryan Duckworth - 8-2 - Griffin Toombs (9)
#2SJV - Neel Bhagat - 5-8 - Justin Hu (11)
#3SJV - Colin Samuel - 4-6 - Zhungyang Li (12)
#4SJV - Roberto Ramos - 6-4 - Ma (12)

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