Sunday, August 12, 2007

Congrats to Austin

Kingwood's dynamic duo finally ran out of steam, as both Dibua brothers were unable to take their singles matches and as a result Austin trounced Kingwood 4-1. Stuart Holland dispatched Omon easily and Odion fell to Chad Case in a third set breaker. Case is now 13-0 on the season and Holland's lone blemish came at the hands of Grant Murphy.

Only Hurlbert/Armstrong were able to pull out a line for Kingwood. Hamilton/Barrera were waxed by Gold/Thurman and Huynh/Vu lost to Schlotterback and Strawbridge. Hai and Phi are on the state runner up team for the second time in 4 years.

The Rice 5.0 team has finished up. As expected, the competition was much too strong for them as they managed to get shut out in each of their team's five matches. Hernan's team was in the middle of the pack, but Dustin Phillips was a star and the self-rated 4.5 may find himself rated 5.5 at the end of this year.

208 comments:

  1. Looks like Betsy's sand baggers made it back to nationals too

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  2. Boy was it Hot in Dallas Sunday. Congrats to Betsie's Team for advancing for the 2nd time to Nationals and for Freeman taking another Sectional Title in week 2 in the 4.0's. Nationals in 3.5 and 4.0's is quite impressive. Freeman can you Captain my 4.5 Team Next Year??

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  3. Congrats to Mike Davis and his guys. I think what we've seen the last two years is the end of the era when you were able to put together a team with "four solid players" and a bunch of your buddies. Last years SA team and this years Austin team have ushered in a new era of "superteams" where you have to line up 8-10 great players. I don't know about Freemans 4.0 team, but it sounds like the same applies there. -AT

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  4. I think the Section should put a stop to that and not allow more than 2 out-of-towners on a team unless the player comes from a city that does not have a league. I think Freeman's team has like 7-8 players who don't live in Houston. That's ridiculous!

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  5. Is anyone surprised with the Rice 5.0 results. In particular Nanjappa. I do recall a blogger at one time said the Rice team would not have a chance and several bloggers said that was nuts. I'd say 0-15 is pretty much a blow out.

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  6. The 50 mile rule should be in effect next year.

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  7. I talked with Sue Johnson at sectionals this weekend, and she said that they are probably going to make a rule of no more than one player outside your metro area for the big cities, and no more than two for the smaller cities. She did not define large and small, or a number of miles, but Houston is obviously large.

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  8. That was a st1tty way by Chad to win Sectionals...

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  9. And what was the way that Chad won Sectionals?

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  10. I think it was pretty shady for Austin to "tank" against Ft Worth, allowing them to place in the final four knowing that they were not going to be that competitive again any of the other 3 teams. It pushed SA out, who is by far a better quality team. As a captain, i understand you have to take care of your players and let them play, but most of us know that if we are not the strongest players then we may or may not play despite making the trip.

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  11. Actually Austin tanking pushed the Wild Dallas team out, not the San Antonio team. Still, it was very crappy of the Austin captain to pull that and he has made a lot of enemies.

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  12. Pretty much every team at sectionals is guilty of cheating or shady play so whats the difference?

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  13. Disagree. Davis decided to rest his two singles guys and at the same time he was able to get some of the guys who hadn't played a match. That's always a captains goal, to get everyone who made the trip a match. The lineup he put out there was capable of winning against a lot of teams. I think it was a pretty smart move on his part, and in the long run, did it make a difference ? Didn't the two best teams make the final ? -AT

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  14. I disagree, but for whatever reason he did it really does not matter. Fort Worth had no chance of beating any of those teams and he knew it. So in essence, he tanked to put himself in a position to not have to play the better team in the semis. Good captaining, bad sportsmanship. And just because you make the trip does not mean you are going to play at Sectionals.

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  15. What Austin did to gain the wild card was strategic and smart. It accomplished 3 things: allowed some of the weaker players, rested the some of the stronger players and provided the team with a better match up in the semis. If I was on that team, I would want my captain to think of doing the same thing. The results support his strategy. Too bad the deciding match had to end in controversy.

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  16. Chad and Odi were not the deciding match. Austin was already ahead 3-1.

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  17. Didn't Jason do the same thing in his last flight match? He rested his stronger players and even defaulted a line The fact that what Austin did changed the outcome of who ended up in the semi-finals is irrelavent. All captains this weekend were doing what they could to spare their players. It was friggin hot out there.

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  18. I was watching the Odi/Chad match and still don't know what happened. Looked like there was gonna be a fight though. Can anyone enlighten us who don't know.

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  19. Who's the bonehead who said SA was the best team out there. Didn't they lose to the Wild Houston team?

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  20. Can't speak for the entire team but I've never seen such lack of respect/class from some of Austin's players.

    How about Chad throwing Odion's towel over the fence or hitting the ball in the opposite direction from him in between serves? The guy is unreal - talk about the Napolean Complex. The dude's about 5'4 and mad at the world. Very Very classy.

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  21. While we can't say for sure, it looked as though Odion aced Chad on a second serve at 8-9 in the third set tiebreak. Chad called it out and the match was over.
    I don't know all of the details, but I got the sense that this was the last straw. As someone mentioned above, Chad threw Odion's towel over the fence and there was some discrepency about Chad hitting the ball in the opposite corner from where Odion was - in between the 1st and 2nd serve. Following the match Jimmy confronted Chad and exchanged verbal jabs.
    Love the "napolean complex" reference. The term fits.

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  22. Great feats of the weekend:

    1. Hangovers turning it around after a first round loss
    2. The OD Bros playing 5 singles matches in the heat. I didn't think they could do it. They definitely proved me wrong.
    3. The Hurricane domination. But, let's face it. Was that really a Houston victory? More like a Texas All Star team.

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  23. Does anyone have some any comments on the Open division. It sounded like Houston was supposed to be a lock.

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  24. The Barker Brothers did not show for the Houston Team which made a Huge Difference in the way the Line-up was set up. Brasington played well and went undefeated in the Singles but the Double for the Houston Team just couldn't pull out a 3rd Set Tiebreaker. The Austin Team was very impressive in Key Moments in the Tiebreaker. The Temperature on the Court on Sat at 230 was about 110 on the Court as well. Austin just outplayed the Open Team from Houston.

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  25. So will Nanjappa be a computer 4.5 now after dumping 4 matches over the weekend? Also TTA and USTA need to start punishing the liars on their self-rate forms. They are obviously not just forgetting to put down relevant information.

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  26. Wow, since Rice 5.0 lost every match that makes Red and the dramatic protests he lodged pretty sad. At least they earned the trip there.

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  27. Talk about napolean complex, how about Lamine Bangoura from Corpus Christi? He almost lost the match against San Antonio because he wouldn't shut his yap, and he was winning.

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  28. Well good luck to Austin but they are in the group of death at Nationals. They have a Super-stacked Southern (NC), who won Sectionals despite only having 7 players first 3 matches, and Florida.
    Should be some great 5.0... errr I mean 4.5 level tennis in that group.

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  29. well you guys think Texas was bad in AR State Championships at the 4.0 level the winning team from jonesboro, brought in a ringer from Taiwan that nobody could find information on unless you could speak/read Chinese. So they dominate State and the ringer goes home to Taiwan and the team gets crushed at Sectionals.
    Karma is a b***h.

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  30. here is a definition of a Sandbagger: This puts any captain in Texas to shame:
    http://www.collegetennisonline.com/view/player.asp?plId=62161

    http://tennislink.usta.com/leagues/reports/Championship/TennisLinkReports.asp?Level=I&MemberID=2003461865&CYear=2007

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  31. I don't understand the the anti-Nanjappa point of view. It's pretty obvious that he should not be rated higher than 5.0.

    Here is a thought, from the look of it, the Rice 5.0 team would be a very good 4.5 team if their 5.0 players get bumped down. They should be at the same level as Kingwood and Hangovers.

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  32. Nanjappa will be a Benchmark 5.0 next year. Even though he went 0-4 he still was competitive with one of the Top guys in 5.0 (Rafeal Omana) who not only played for the 5.0 Team but previously played on the 5.5 Team from Fort Worth the Last 3 years. Nanjappa and Tran also went 7-6 7-6 with a Good Team From Dallas so Don't think he will be getting bumped down like one of the previous posters said.

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  33. Chad is "classless", but there are more of him on the Austin team. The lefty dubs player is a total pr**k, and honestly, i hope they get hammered at Nationals. I heard Schlotterback got pegged by a Rothe serve "on accident" or probably more like a little unsportmanlike conduct too. Even though its an emotional high to advance to Nationals, guys like that do not deserve it.

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  34. Besides Arun,Amit everyone else was 4.5 rated player and in fact 2 of their players are from the Hangovers and another player from their Team Alain Tran does very well in 4.5's.

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  35. Nationals will be alot tougher this Year mainly because its alot more affordable to go to Tucson Arizona rather than Hawaii. Hawaii averages out to $700 to $1500 while you can go to Tucson for about $600. Austin has a Good shot of Advancing especially since they don't have to worry about DQ's at Nationals. You CANNOT be Dq'ed at Nationals.

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  36. Who was the Sand bagger talke about in an Earlier Post up above?

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  37. It's a player Red is trying to get his 4.5 team...

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  38. Tried going to the link to find out who it was but no player was found. Is the person really that good ?

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  39. I agree, the USTA/TTA need to come down harder on people that lie on there self rate forms. Just because you slip through the cracks one year and get a mixed computer rating doesn't mean that you can't get DQ'd one or two years later after it is proven that you lied.

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  40. I would like to see them do something about tanking...OBVIOUS tanking. Reid Strand is exhibit A. Daniel Cambon exhibit B. 4.5 next year will be a joke in Texas again.

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  41. Tosha Smith got into a Heated battle after a 4.0 player got Dq'ed from Dallas which took them out of the running. The Captain was making a Huge Scene at the Player Party.

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  42. Did anyone consider the Dibuas to be Ringers? What about Thomas Reader? Bobby Cocanougher? Stuart Holland? Chad Case?Lamine Bangoura?

    These were all 4.5 players this past weekend. They were all Damn Good.

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  43. It's a guy named Karol Szmurlo who plays for Florida Atlantic (D1 team). Transfer from 2 time D2 National Championship team in which he won the deciding line his sophomore year. He was self rated as a 4.0 player. From Pac NW Section.

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  44. I just Googled Reid Strand. He makes those guys look like chop liver.

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  45. You can add Trent Broach and Chance Morgan to that list. Go look at the San Antonio 5.0 league. The team "Danny Four Five" says it all. Cambon and Vazquez have a loss to a 4.0 player. These are the guys that WON 4.5 nationals the year before!

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  46. One of those guys must be sleeping with Tasha.

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  47. I agree with the lack of sportsmanship on the Austin team. I played the "lefty" at line 1 doubles Friday afternoon and had a few altercations including him calling an ace out at 9-9 in the 3rd set breaker. I went to the net to get a closer look and he says "here is the f'ing mark." There was no mark to speak of. Official standing right by the court, 50 or so people watching, including kids and no warning or anything from the ref.

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  48. Oh and not to mention having to watch Chad Case strut around all weekend like he was "Billy Badass." I wish Odion would have knocked the hell outta him.

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  49. Did anyone consider the Dibuas to be Ringers? What about Thomas Reader? Bobby Cocanougher? Stuart Holland? Chad Case?Lamine Bangoura?

    I did not see Reader play. I thought that Case and Holland were solid 5.0's. I also did not see Bongoura play. I think the Dibuas are outstanding 4.5 tennis players but would not call them ringers. Cocanougher is a very good player, super champs 18s I heard. But, I watched hi and he misses quite a bit. A low levl 5.0 if anything, but not near as bad of a sandbagger as some of the others.

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  50. Who would Win if Austin Champs vs San Antonio Champs from last Year?

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  51. San Antonio - Nuf said...

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  52. Biggest Joke to me is Dustin Phillips being allowed to Self Rate as 4.5 and being very Dominant at Sectionals this Year.Jorge Cuesta,Putterman,Weingeist,Mazique all getting bumped down Mid Year. Sounds to me someone has some recruiting to do.

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  53. Best Open Player: Jack Brasington
    Best 5.5 Player: Giaullme Gauthier
    Best 5.0 Player : Dustin Phillips
    Best 4.5 Player:Tie Between Thomas Reader and Stuart Holland,You could argue Grant Murphy deserves to be Noted.
    Best 4.0 Player: Sarosh Ahmed
    Best 3.5 Player: Jason Freeman

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  54. From what I saw the Dallas Wild team would have given the Austin team the toughest match in the Finals (that is the same team the knocked out with their tank job). They had the depth to play twice and still have a fresh lineup for the finals. It makes the snakey tactics of the Austin Captain more clear... like the others, I don't like it and don't agree with it.

    As for the Austin Captain resting players on Saturday because of the heat, please, like the other commentator said, they would have almost 20 hours to rest.

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  55. It must be an Austin thing. In my finals match against Austin when we went out to start our warm-up both players on the other side started at the net. When I asked if we could hit a few groundstrokes first they said no. After they got their net practice one of the players stooped down to tie their shoes. I timed it. She was bent over for about 90 seconds. I haven't needed more than 10 seconds to tie my shoes since I was 7. Then 3 games into the match they took a bathroom break.

    In the 5th and deciding line their team took a bathroom break with my team serving 5-2 for the match.

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  56. what a joke with the SA guys tanking matches left and right. Daniel Cambon, Jorge Vazquez, Reid Strand, Chance Morgan, Alex and Andre Deleon. Glad to see TTA is asleep at the wheel with SA right down the road. In Dallas you have Rusty Branch, Wesley James, Donnie Pollard, Clint Cash, just to name a few. At least many got bumped at the ESR.

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  57. With players like Chance Morgan and Reid Strand all TTA has to do is look at the old Junior Rankings circa 2000-2001 or so and these guys will be in the Top 5 SC, who cares if they flunked out of College or whatever.

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  58. With whatever formula the computer is using to calculate ratings, we should expect more players from the upper levels to get bumped down in the future. That is life, so all of us will have to deal with it and recruit these players. Those that can't will continue to complain about it on this blog.

    Can't wait till next year to hear about it.

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  59. I take offense to the blogger who said didn't every team at sectionals cheat. I played for the S.A. team and we were lumped in as an offspring of the S.A. team from last year. After 2 of my matches I had players tell me they heard we were a dirty team, but they didn't see it that way after playing us. Also, all of our "ringers" ie Reader and Hildebrand have been playing all year at 4.5 and 5.0 and winning tournaments, no sandbaging and not hiding, so everyone knew what we had. We had a strong team, but the singles of David B. and Grant were too tough and they deseved it. I only regret that Austin didn't have to contend with both of them. Lastly, the S.A team from last year started a trend that I hate to see continue. Think about it, we are all playing a sport that has people thinking we all cheat to win. - V.G.

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  60. Thanks for all the kind words about my 3.5 and 4.0 guys...they have all worked hard all year, playing tournaments and practicing up (to the point I believe most of my 3.5s are now legitimate 4.0s and most of my 4.0s are now legitimate 4.5s). Everyone, on both teams, played well in the big matches.

    Congrats to Betsie on her Sectionals Championship and to Jimmy and Tim/Ken for their great runs this weekend...it is not easy to get to Sectionals in the first place, much less make a run at a Championship...well done!

    Although I have benefited from the current rules (50 mile rule not applying to Houston, at least in the summer) I do support a rule that will keep players local. Contrary to the posts above I really only have 3 players from outside of Houston on my 4.0 team and 2 (really just 1) on my 3.5 team. Both teams are comprised of tournament players...that is how we met each other and it made sense for us to play on 1 league team since we hang out at tournaments once a month or so and cheer each other on.

    Anyway, I'm a little sick of tennis right now so I'll check back in with you guys in a couple of weeks....I need a tennis break : )

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  61. Just an observation...

    In the 4.0s, I personally felt like our own division within the HTA (Rolido Boys, HTC-Heat, Rice, etc...) and the Houston City Championship pools (Chancellors, Lost Forest, Seinna) were MUCH MORE difficult than our pool at Sectionals, including the semis and finals. Had Rice had all their players available they would have easily made it to the finals against us on Sunday (they lost a 3rd set tiebreaker to Sectional Finalist Dallas to drop a 3-2 decision without Strasser, Swartley, Karel, etc...). The HTC-Heat would have also made it to the finals had they been in Rice's position.

    Just my 2 cents...

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  62. San Antonio had a great team this past weekend and just dropped the ball in their pool. They should have beaten Houston but got stuck without their best player playing Singles. They moved Reader into the Doubles which was a HUGE Mistake. You don't move your best player to Doubles against a Tough Team, that's something you do against a weak team. By the way didn't a player get DQ'ed from the San Antonio Team at the Local Level,I think his name was Dan Timoskevich. Did you really think that he was a 4.5? Come on V.G your as guilty as every Captain of trying to add Sandbaggers. Go back to the Drawing Board.

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  63. Timoskevich as a 4.5 was a joke just look at his tournament results he has consistent wins over 5.0 players. Good Catch.
    As for Reader again look at how easy he has been rolling guys in league and tournaments.
    Why would someone want to play down at least 1-2 levels? Is it a napoleon complex to make you feel better?

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  64. I don't know the whole story behind Timoskevich, i.e., did he self rate, but I think that VG's point was this: the supposed "ringers" on the SA team have obviously not been playing to maintain their ratings which is why Timoskevich was rated out and why Reader has a midseason rating of 5.0. The same can't be said for every team, for example the Hangovers. Look how they used David B. this year. Technically, he played in only one match during the regular season and one match in the city playoffs, both doubles. Then they use him in doubles in their first match at Sectionals, then throw him into #1 singles against Houston where he absolutely destroyed supposed ringer Hildebrand. I saw that match and I don't know about him as a doubles player but as a singles player he is not a 4.5. But guess what? Because of the way they hid him this season, he will be computer rated 4.5 next year so no amount of complaining will help then. They tried to do the same thing with Grant Murphy, even having him go so far as to (reportedly, from many readers of this blog) tank a singles match during league play but they may have overused him at Sectionals to keep him rated down.

    I personally see a difference between picking up guys who are computer rated at a level while trying to win matches - even if the computer might be a bit off - and having guys tank matches or hiding them on your roster.

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  65. Mark Hildebrand is a stretch but he has played 4.5 before i believe. USTA needs to get rid of the default rule that allows a match to count. Also placing a limit on team size might help so that teams do not hoard players (i.e Oak Creek - Conway, Oak Creek -Branch) where teams take 20+ players.

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  66. I've played in Houston for awhile, but never been on this site. It's a nice site.

    I was Dallas on Sunday to watch both Houston teams play...and they played really well. It just so happens that the Austin team played better.

    I've been reading some of the comments and had to add what I saw.

    When I was watching Red's match against the Austin team, I was hearing a pretty-much one-sided conversation between a pissed-off SA player/guy and a Austin player watching the same match. This SA guy hated both teams and was not shy at proclaiming it either. He told his little son and anyone else whom can hear him that he hopes the other Houston team (Kingwood) or Ft. Worth team wins it. Kingwood killed Ft. Worth 4-1.

    The SA guy was complaining how the Austin team didn't put out their best team in the semis and how it was not in line with the "purity of the game" and how it costs them a spot in the semifinals. The SA guy was going on and on...loudly too. The Austin guy smiled and simply told him he was grateful for that b/c he and others got to play a match at Sectionals when other players, from other teams, did not have the same opportunity. I agree with him. I know I'd like to get in a match if my team could have afforded it. In fact, I found out later that the SA team would not have made it to the semis anyways. I believe the Wild Dallas team would be next in line.

    The SA guy was also irate with Red and his other teammates as well...but mainly with Red. Apparently Red and his SA team, from last year, put together a superteam and beat up on the SA folks...and subsequently, the rest of the Texas teams as well. I think the Austin guy knew of Red b/c he just smiled and jokingly replied that Red likes to travel on the weekends.

    The SA guy or his teammates are probably still pissed. Get over it! They're probably the ones on this board moaning and complaining about it....

    The Finals between Houston and Austin was really good.

    Gary/Hurlbert's doubles match was a cinch. Gary played really well. Throughout the quick match, you can hear people asking if Gary was really a 4.5. ;-)

    The Dibua brothers played really well too only to lose to guys whom don't miss.

    Odi's match, although meaningless in the end, really made me queasy. I saw Case try to kick a ball into the net, but it went all the way down the fence. Odi proceeded to walk over to the fence and pick up the ball. It was a second serve coming up. Odi probably thought he'd get a first serve...I thought so too. As it turns out, Odi did not get it. It did not look like Case was trying to play mind games with Odi, but I think he still should have let Odi take two serves.

    As far as the towel thing goes, I saw Case throw a towel over the fence after a point in the tiebreaker. I just thought it was his towel and he was throwing it to his teammate on the other side of the fence.

    When Case called Odi's last serve out, you could hear everyone gasp. Odi hit that second serve so hard and we were four courts away...Case was the only one who could call it in or out. The ref was on the first court so he could see it, much to our dismay. I thought the serve was in...but I was sitting on the grass four courts away. Red had the best comment when he said, "No one could have seen it but Case, not even Odi." The Houston captain, as all captains usually say, said that he KNEW it was in and that Case cheated Odi and his team. Of course he didn't have a great view either. I just think it's a terrible way to end a match...especially such a good match like that. I would have replayed the point.

    Odi, after the match, didn't seem too displeased. He knew that Austin had already won the team match.

    Honestly, I thought the Austin team showed great restraint for celebrating after they "clinched" the win (after they got 3 wins and after they won the last match). They didn't celebrate or interrupt Odi's ongoing match and they didn't start yelling too loudly on the sidelines...perhaps it was b/c a rubber match was going on on the first court (4.5 or 5.5 womens finals).

    I believe both Houston teams and the Austin team showed great sportsmanship in the losses/wins. each of them congratulated each other and wished them a safe trip home, etc.

    In such a charged atmosphere, it's easy to see how tempers can flare-up and people can/will hold grudges for a long time. But I don't understand why some people in this blog are out to get people DQed (on any team) or wish people "bad karma" or call people/team "classless".

    I was there in Dallas. I saw no such thing. I think people are taking this too seriously and, more importantly, too personally. So your team didn't win Sectionals? No big deal. Only one team wins Sectionals. As it turns out, Austin won Sectionals.

    Did Austin have the best team? maybe or maybe not. I still Odi and Omom are one of the best singles players out there...but just not on Sunday.

    Maybe next year...

    Again, this is a great site. Keep it up.

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  67. That Gary Armstrong guy on the Houston team was the biggest sandbagger I have ever seen. What is the point at playing 2 levels below your actual ability. Is that necessary??

    I may play as a 4.5 being a 5.0 but having an off day, I can still lose a match. That guy was ridiculously good! A lot better than the guy who got DQed from the Austin team. Rumors are that he tanked a couple games in the finals to not get DQed by the computer system. Nice, that a way to play the sport.

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  68. Yes, Gary is a very strong 4.5 ;-)

    Holland and Case are a very strong 4.5 too. ;-)

    Odi and Oman are a very strong 4.5 too. ;-)

    Red is a very strong 4.5 too ;-)

    Reader is a very strong 4.5 too ;-)

    In fact, every Sectionals team has "sandbaggers". Otherwise, they wouldn't make it to Sectionals.

    The point is that everyone is a really good 4.5. If they played 5.0, they'd be in the middle of the pack because the 5.0 Sectional players were probably 5.5 or higher.

    It's all relative. ;-)

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  69. As you might know, a few of us from Houston played on the SETX team from Beaumont. Here are a couple of observations that I would note from the weekend:

    1. Everybody on the Austin team are good sports. The youngest guys on the team, Chad at singles and the two guys at line one doubles need to grow up. Their immature youth got the best of them some times as you would expect. Chad beat Hunckler something like 1 and 0 in singles and acted like an idiot in many of the points, very much like a 19 year old would act. Chad is a very good player and hustles on the court better than anyone. Hunckler just played his own game and took the loss and went on his way. I would have loved to see Augusto play that guy, but Augusto couldn't make the trip with an injury.
    2. Rothe and I played against Schlotterback in doubles from the Austin team. Schlotterback liked to line up right on the center line when Peter served to his partner on the ad side. Peter, just like Roger Clemons would do, on a second serve, went right at Schlotterback and hit him in the leg before he could get out of the way. By the way, going right at him basically was serving to the T, Schlotterback was just in the way. Let's just say that Schlotterback didn't line up on the center line any more. Schlotterback, by the way, was a very good player and a nice guy, lefty spin serve and very quick at the net.
    3. Believe it or not, the best doubles team in the 4.5's was the number one team for Waco. Especially Charlie Rivera, who played line one singles vs. Ft. Worth and won, line 1 doubles vs. Austin and won and slaughtered Peter and I. His partner against us was the former tennis coach for the Baylor Womens team. Unfortunately the rest of the team for Waco was fairly weak. That doubles team returned serve better than any team I have played against or seen in recent memory.

    The bottom line is that the competition is very, very tough at sectionals. I now know what I need to work on to get better to be able to compete- My returns, serves, volleys, strokes, backhands, forehands. I LOVE THIS GAME!!!!

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  70. Don't forget your overheads, David. :)

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  71. If you take all of those 4.5 "sandbaggers" from above, put them on the same team and sent them to 5.0 Sectionals, they would not win a line.

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  72. There are always going to be grey areas between levels. I know that the computer is not perfect, but if I am playing against a superior player rated at the same level who has legitimately earned that rating, i.e., they have not been throwing matches or games to keep their rating, I'm all good with that. For example, Reader was computer rated 4.5 this year and I have seen no indication that he done anything but his best to win matches. I personally think that the computer is stupid, but if I ran into him in a 4.5 tournament I'd take my whooping and move on.

    What I can't stand is all the manipulation to get/keep a rating. I've never even thrown a point in a competetive situation no matter how much better I might be than my opponent. Where is the sense of accomplishment playing at a level lower than you are capable? Doesn't that defeat the whole idea of the athletic challenge? I'd rather win a major zone tournament here in Texas at my level than win Nationals below my level. As a 4.5 player from Texas I take no pride in what the team from SA accomplished last year

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  73. Not true. Look at San Antonio last year they would have probably won 5.0 sectionals. It's funny to see all the cheaters complaining about each other. These sectionals teams deserve each other and all the childish behavior that ensues. What do you expect from guys that want to play 1 or 2 levels below their actual level and get easy wins.

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  74. Agree with the post a few up. Thre should be no sense of accomplishment in putting together the best group of out of level players to win a NTRP level event. Betsie, Red etc aren't true competitiors, they try their best to make sure there is no competition in order to win. Sure these other teams do the same thing but in the end whats the point. A 4.5 win at sectionals is meaningless, and just means all your players are 5.0 plus.

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  75. Dear Htown Hacker,

    You are right, I forgot about overheads, drop shots, basically everything. The good news is that it gives me something to strive for. If I was Federer, I would eventually get bored with the game.
    It is funny to see the complaints about some of the players at sectionals. Well, the participants at sectionals are supposed to be the best at their level. Levels play, as subjective as it is, is improving on fairness. It used to be a lot worse, and I used to complain the worst as some of you know. It is not a perfect system but it is improving. That is all we can ask for. By the way, some people that were mentioned above that are accused of being two levels out, I believe that it is a match up thing. I have seen those same people struggle against some weak 4.5 players. The fun of the game, for you complainers, is to try to figure out their weak spots and attack them. Most of these guys have trouble with slice and dice games, or counter punchers. The weaker 4.5 players and myself included would do better by learning to hit more variety of shots. Learn to hit slice mixed in with top spin. This is what makes tennis so fun. Everyone has a weak spot. Can you take advantage of it, is the question? I just need more time to practice. That is the real problem for most of us. If I could play 5 days a week I would either be a great player or injured! Most likely the latter.

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  76. Whats the point of surrounding yourselves with ringers and you yourself not improving. Just means you still can't hang at your respective levels.

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  77. I didn't know Red was ever a Captain of a team. As far as I know it's Tim Green/Burkhart Captaining the Hangovers. Jorge Vazquez/Cambon Captaining the San Antonio Team and Red was just on both teams. Til you get to Nationals you don't even know what a true 4.5 is.

    As for the person who commented above about the San Antonio being able to win 5.0 Sectionals last year give me a break. Austin won 5.0 Sectionals last year and players on that team won Open this year.(Melmed,Hayes)

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  78. The jump between playoff players from 4.5 to 5.0 is huge. I'm 10-2 lifetime at 4.5 sectionals. I'm 0-3 in Dallas city 5.0 playoffs. Most of those sets at the 5.0 city playoffs weren't even that close. A really good 4.5 player is most often just a middle of the road 5.0 player. There can never be a bright line between the levels. As the person notes above, a lot of this has to do with styles, strategies and good and bad days on the court. All most of us really want is that people play truthfully and not to tank games, sets or matches to protect their ratings.

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  79. I know ya'll aren't interested in the women's side. I'm actually from Dallas so I keep up with "Betsie's 4.5 Teams". I spectated at most of their matches this year to help out the Dallas team in the other flight. Her 2005 team was definitely questionable and full of sandbaggers but honestly her team this year were all just solid 4.5 players and yes some of them might get bumped after this year but I didn't see anything wrong with any of her players. The matches against good 4.5 players were all competitive and they blew away the weaker 4.5 players. That's what's to be expected. I will say this though - You couldn't meet a nicer group of players. Gracious and very honest on the line calls. In fact I saw one of her players overrule their partner which cost them a game. I don't care what you say, but winning Sectionals effectively 2 years in a row IS an accomplishment. I respect Betsie's ability to captain and if I ever moved to Houston would feel very lucky to be on one of her teams.

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  80. C'mon - anyone who is as confident and/or cocky enough to predict that they have a 90% chance of winning is loaded with ringers.

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  81. Actually, the deciding match for the women was playing while Odi and Case were playing and I don't think Houston's team were sandbaggers. Very competitive match that could have gone either way.

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  82. I was up at Dallas and did not see any out of level players from the Houston teams in either 4.5 or 5.0, though some may say that Dustin Phillips should be 5.5.

    I think that the Houston tennis community should be proud of their teams' accomplishments at Sectionals: Houston is sending Freeman's 3.5 and 4.0 and betsie's 4.5 teams to Nationals, Hangovers made it to the semis and Kingwood to the finals. I apologize if I may have left out any other good results.

    Those are good results for our city to build on for next year. Practice hard, recruit well, quit complaining and get back on the courts.

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  83. I had the opportunity to hang around and see the tennis this weekend in Dallas. After a friend sent me the link to this board to see if i had any opinions, i wanted to respond to a few things.

    First of all, i was watching a friend on the Ft. Worth team play against Waco during the Austin/SE TX match. I saw the point the blogger above referred to when the Lefty on Austin used the f-word... Gimme a break dude, you're telling me you haven't heard the f-word before? He was upset because you were whining constantly during the match, and were once again whining about a call that was clearly out! I was standing right by everyone in the bleachers and clearly saw the ball hit out, and leave a mark. Go practice for next yr.

    For the record, I crushed that Reader guy everyone keeps talking about the only time i played him in singles. I would have to say that he was one of the better players this weekend. The guys from houston, Armstrong and Murphy were by far the best players in the tournament. Any complaining about sandbagging from the houston teams is ridiculous, because they were the biggest sandbaggers of all.... and i live in houston! I didn't know most of their 4.5 players, but i sense that there are a large number of Poor Losers on this board. That Austin team won, and you'll have to wait till next yr. Go practice and find yourself a few more sandbaggers to tank games/matches to get ready for sectionals.

    That final match felt like it was all of Harris county vs. that Austin team... i couldn't help but feel some sort of justice that Austin won so easily (4-1). Not sure why there were remarks above about it being controversial... it was over (3-1) when that last call dispute took place. The two captains on the 4.5 Houston teams were the biggest jokes. One guy didn't even play, but tried to pick a fight with the austin player, and the other guy named Red wouldn't stop name dropping, and running his mouth about what a good player he was. Someone told me later that Red had lost his #3 doubs match to the austin team in less than an hour... ouch. I guess the name dropping helps around people that don't know tennis. I saw right through it. Not to mention that i heard him trying to recruit players from the other Houston team that made the finals.. funny stuff. I live here and don't get involved in that shady stuff anymore.

    Well, just wanted to say that i think this is a GREAT website!

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  84. Funny that someone from Houston who doesn't know Red thought he was the captain of the Hangovers even though he is listed as neither the captain or co-captain. I remember reading a post from Tim Green about how Red wasn't responsible for the addition of some of the shadier players on the Hangovers but anyone who was in Dallas this weekend knows that Red was running the show. It's nice to know that all those lessons he learned from Alann Torres last year aren't going to waste.

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  85. Wow,that last poster must be pretty Good to have beaten Reader.I guess he wasn't good enough to play at Sectionals though because he was a Spectator. You could argue Houston has a Bunch of Sandbaggers but what city doesn't. Just so Happens the Strong Team from Austin prevailed and Congratulations to them and Good Luck to them at Nationals.

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  86. I sure would love to know who it is that dusted so Reader so easily in singles. Other than that, I appreciate your cynical tone on all this. I agree that I do not find it to be a big deal for guy to have thrown out the F-Word during a match. I do it all the time, and almost got my ass kicked for it in Waco, but I do not envision stopping. Got to let the emotions flow.

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  87. Red is the busiest body in Houston tennis from the sound of things. I agree with everone else who points out the obvious fact that he is the guy pulling the strings for teams he is on since he spend 10X more of of time recruiting and placing bets than actually playing tennis.

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  88. Red is a mediocre 4.5 league double player who has riden his partners for years. He always has best partner. Look at his results this year.

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  89. Yeah all his 5.0 wins were with John Guerrero who should be in 5.5.

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  90. Hey if you are sick of all of the 'who sandbagged who' and 'congrats to so and so for being so good at cheating the system' feel free to come over to the tourney blog site at www.Houstontourneytennis.blogspot.com where there is currently nothing going on but we are serving punch and cookies.

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  91. Red won with Gurerro in 2 3rd set tiebreakers wow what blow outs. In fact he's won a majority of his matches in 3rd set tiebreakers. If he was so good don't you think he could win in straight sets.

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  92. It doesn't matter how good that guy is, if his partner (Red) sucks, then it can be a close match... especially at sectionals where most teams have solid players.

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  93. Gosh, Hangovers are getting so much grief for cheating and Sandbagging but the Fact of the matter is that they barely made it to sectionals and Barely made it out of their flight in Dallas. They got Beat by Austin 4-1 and then a default was awarded so that made it 3-2. They where not as Good as everyone thought they were.

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  94. Austin recruited Case/Bowman
    Houston recruited The Dibuas
    Hangovers recruited David B. Grant Murphy
    Ft. Worth recruited Cocanougher

    What's the big Deal ????

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  95. Somewhat off topic....but did anyone else notice all the HOT chics that were out there spectating? Glad the temperature was high over the weekend, requiring some itsy bitsy outfits. Could have used some of them at the hotel pool I tell ya! ;P

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  96. I'm in favor of Co-Ed Naked Tennis whenever the temp is over 100

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  97. I haven't had a chance to defend myself until now. I give props to Houston for beating us. They had more depth then us and beat us, and I don't think if Reader played singles it would have made a difference, becuase David B. and Grant were quality players and made their doubles that much deeper. I think if David B. would have been able to play on Sunday it might have been an all Houston final. The two guys I played in doubles, Jody and Alan were great players and quality people. The only other players I know on the team are Bobo and Red and Bobo is a stand up guy and a solid player. As far as our team getting Dan Timoskevich, he played and never was asked to drop a single point or play down in tournaments and the computer rated him out as it probably should have. That is the way it is suppose to work. However, he would have struggled to win some matches up in Dallas. My point was our team might have had some players that were questionable, but they did nothing to manipulate the computer and if they got rated out so be it. If the computer is going to work, that is the only way it will be corrected, Honest match play. - V.G.

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  98. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  99. I think V.G is a Great Guy but as we all know every Team has its fair share of Sandbaggers but with that being said he was talking about the San antonio team from 2006 like they where untouchable. My Team from Dallas had match pts. in doubles and Rusty Branch was about to start a 3rd set Tiebreaker against Broach then it would have been a Toss up. I don't think Vince is a 4.5 especially after watching him dominate in the 3 Doubles matches he played. I say he's a Good 4.5 but the year end rating calculation may come out 5.0

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  100. V.G. is a 4.5, no way he is 5.0...

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  101. Hey we broke the century mark on this chain. Just wanted to be the 101st poster.

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  102. Personally, I'm glad to see a team win that did not have: 1) Any current college players on the roster, 2) Any players who deliberately tanked matches the year before to get rated down, and 3) Any players who travelled from more than 50 miles away to play on a "superteam." Whatever you may think of the Austin team, they did not resort to any of those tactics.

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  103. This is the first time I've been to this site and it's hilarious. All these guys complaining about the same things that there own teams do. Another team just did it better it appears. I just happened to meet Red last year in passing, and he showed me his palm pilot that had players records, strengths and weaknesses, jock size, etc. He was whining about other teams cheating and then I think he had Broach on his team who gets invited to play in our pro/am as the pro every year. These smaller towns will never win at sectionals because 1) they don't have sandbaggers like bigger cities do and 2) they have 20+ players on the roster so they are much deeper when playing at sectionals in the heat, where smaller towns are limited. Also, I think it's crap that these guys can play on 2 seperate teams just to better their chances of going to sectionals. What's up with the guy whining about that player dropping the f bomb. Seriously who hasn't heard that before? I would drop it every game if I was playing that guy!!

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  104. Maybe I should clarify. I have heard the f-bomb millions of times. I have used it on court on many occassions as well and have had my share of outbursts. But, I have never seen it go unpunished with a USTA ref standing 10 feet away. I have gotten warnings and code violations on a few occasions for doing much less.The guys that beat us were very good. I congratulated them after the match. It was just a shame that a good match ended in that fashion.

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  105. we know bowman was the only 4.5 busted as he was a self-rate. Were there any Computer rated players bumped on the men's side? Case, hurlbert, and Holland had to have been very close.
    I know of one Benchmark player in the 4.0 Women that got DQ'ed after Pool and I am still scratching my head.

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  106. Red Benzon's protests and complaints about ringers this year has made for great comedy, as everyone knows he wrote the book on cheating in league.

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  107. There was another computer-rated DQ - Tor Erickson, who played for Wild Dallas 4.0 men. His DQ turned a 3-2 Dallas win into a 3-2 NETX win. His captain wasn't happy, since he assumed a computer rating was some kind of a holy grail or something. What bugged him worse was that Tor wasn't even the best guy on his team, much less the whole tournament. It seems like DQs should start with the worst offenders, not with mid-level offenders, even though they deserve it also. NE had a much better player (Ronnie Blake) whose win over Dallas was allowed to stand. That's what really hurt.

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  108. Ronnie Blake playing 4.0 is a total joke.

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  109. Thats what i do not understand by the computer algorithm. Again Bowman that was easy as a Self-rate, but how does Ericcson get DQ'ed but Blake, Holland (destroyed everyone all year), and Case all survive. Holland was an Appeal down for crying out loud you would have thought he would already be high on the rating list.
    Lisa Zimmerman was a Benchmark and led Wild Dallas 4.0W to 4-0 pool play only to get DQ'ed and Team falls back to 2-2 and does not advance.

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  110. It did not help in Tor's case though that he was also playing and winning in 4.5 league, I mean what self-respecting player is going to play up and actually win matches.

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  111. By the way, usta, loves for people to play on two different teams in different cities because they get to collect more league fees. Money, money, money.

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  112. It's hilarious that Red would complain about anyone cheating?!?! It's also funny how a previous poster mentioned he knew Bobo AND Red but ONLY said Bobo was a stand up guy! LOL! Red is the most shady pathetic cheater in all Texas.

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  113. Is anyone playing in the Combo League?

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  114. I am a 5.5 playing as a 4.0 on Red's Combo team.

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  115. Does anyone have anything good to say about Red?

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  116. Red is a good cheater.

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  117. Has anyone Checked out Houstontennistourney.Blogspot.com.

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  118. Everyone is Mad at Red because of Last Years San Antonio Team and the protests he filed in 5.0. Although it's funny that none of them got Granted and He got Bumped up. He will get killed in 5.0's.

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  119. When is the deadline for signing up for the Combo, and where can I find more info about it?

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  120. Red will be 4.5 next year. Midyear ratings are greatly altered by sectional results.

    Red has good qualities and bad ones, like all of us. He's still got a rotten backhand though. j/k...hahaha

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  121. First I want to say that this is a fine site. I do feel like I need to clarify some things about our team. The Austin mens 4.5 team is full of fine people and sure in the heat of battle things can be said that would not normally be said. Everyone wants to win in Dallas and when we don't we are all dissapointed. Only one team can win. Last year we lost to Fort Worth in the semis 3-2 and it hurt. This year I told my team that if we played well early we may be able to get the rest of the team in the tournament. We are deep and everyone wanted to play, including me. I saw someone at least said we were "competent"? Jason Lee and I lost 6-3, 7-6 (10-8) Sal and Fred lost in a second set breaker as well. Torch lost to the 18 year old kid 3 & 3. One of those breakers go our way and we win 3-2 which would have made us very happy. I can guarantee you all that I did not care one bit who the other teams in the semi finals were. Maybe you all know all the players on all the teams better than I as I only knew that every team there would be a stacked and very tough team. We wanted to play and beat San Antonio but they did not take care of their own buisness and some of their players evidently assumed that they were the entitled ones that would have had the wild card by us losing to Ft. Worth. We lost 3-2 to Fort Worth and I can guarantee you that anyone who was there saw us all fighting to win our matches. If I am correct Fort Worth lost 3 breakers to Houston in the semis so the match was not a cakewalk like some have said. I did what was best for our team which was to see that everyone that came to Dallas got the chance to play and we were able to rest our singles players for sundays matches, which was my plan all along. I knew any other team that made sunday would likely not be able to have that luxury and it did pay off as the singles players from Houston lost steam in the finals and our guys looked fresh. I can also tell you that Chad played the semi finals and finals with a broken left thumb. He caught a warmup serve from the Wild Houston player and it was purple by the end of that match. He had to run around a lot of two handed painful backhands to win both matches. I do know that nobody could see that 120 mi second serve but Chad. The rest of us where 3 courts away and some of the Houston players especially the captain were sure they were hooked. I am not. I know Chad and he is sometimes over the top out there but I have never known him to hook anyone. The towel over the fence was not cool, but again there is another side to that. Chad did tell me that his opponent had 2 towels on the court and would leave them on Chads side of the court. Chad and Stuart both had to stand at the fence to return the giant serves they were seeing and Chad was worried about tripping on the towel. He told me also that he meant to kick the ball into the net on the missed serve and it rolled around the net onto the opponents court. I also felt like we were playing Harris County 3 times this past weekend. At the final there were players from the Houston Wild, Houston, and SE Texas, and San Antonio? all there rooting for Houston. I must say that you all had your fair shot at us and we still came out on top. All the matches were 4-1 and that says more than anything else. It kills me to see that some people say that I have made enemies, how? What did it do to you? I can't understand it. Houston, San Antonio, and Dallas always have the biggest underrated sandbagging teams in the state so where is the beef? If you look at things you will see that Austin Open men beat the unbeatable Houston Sattelite team. We won 4.5 mens. In little state in Waco our two second place teams in 4.5 played each other in the finals. It looks to me like Auatin had a good year. We will do our very best to represent the Texas Section and our state well at Nationals. I hope I have not hurt any more feelings or made any more enemies by giving the other side of the story. Thanks for the opportunity to respond.
    Michael Davis, captain Austin Wild

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  122. I wouldn't sweat it Mike. I think it just amounts to those who end up winning in Dallas have to defend themselves for some reason. Those who lose feel compelled to point out that the other team cheated, sandbagged, or did something out of the ordinary to earn their success when in reality they did what every other captain would have done to gain the victory. It's very competitive in Dallas and even when you've got the best team it is never a guarantee that you'll win. Every captain and player works very hard to get there and win and it all amounts to dissapointment and jeolousy which provokes people to do and say the things that they do.

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  123. Again, Congrats to Captain Davis. I think I speak for most of us in wishing y'all success at Nationals. Bring the title home to Texas.

    Further props for winning with no super-ringers and for having your players play to their fullest abilities even during the regular season, when they could have tanked matches to protect themselves. Again, good job.

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  124. Mike,

    Wow, how did Chad to it - A broken thumb and all?? What a heroic effort - some would call it Napolean-esc! :) And I love the excuse about not wanting to trip on the towel...so what the hell, why not throw it over the fence! Not bring it to the bench, not give it to my opponent, not shove it to the side...toss it over!The dude's a jerk no matter how you spin it. What's the secret to his studly strut? I think we all wish we could walk around as if we owned the world just like him.

    Mike, if you've got 3 or 4 other teams cheering against you guys it's probably not a coincidence. Wish a classier team could represent Texas at Nationals. Congrats!!!

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  125. Hey Mike Davis-

    You sound like a stand up guy and congrats on your victory but as for your boy Chad Case, he is on your team and is representing Austin and now representing Texas, and there is no way to sugar coat the fact that he is just a freakin p**ick. The guy beats a very respectable player like Hunckler 0 and 1 and then is high fivin his teamates yellin "yeah man" like he just qualified for the U.S. Open. Chad just being Chad is not an excuse. Someone needs to beat the living tar out of this guy, on and off the court. Good luck at nationals. I hope you have a good talk with your team about sportsmanship.

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  126. Thanks to whoever tried to plug the tourney blog page but you got the address backward. It's www.houstontourneytennis.blogspot.com. Please feel free to head over there now and continue the Red bashing in a more leisurely setting.

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  127. Our resident blogger will go to any length to defend ringers and sandbagging team captains. Not too long ago he said how unbelievable chris hunckler was. Well he loses to chad case 0 and 1, and the blogger feels that auston had no super ringers? Are you kidding me? Either Hunckler is actually a 3.5 or Case is a huge ringer. You cant have it both ways htown hacker.

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  128. Mike,

    Nice job this past weekend in Dallas and good luck at Nationals. You managed to beat two quality 4.5 Houston teams with veteran captains on Sunday. All competent 4.5 captains knew back in March that your team was out there and that it was loaded and I'm sure they all were working as hard as they could to put together a roster that could compete with yours. You had the bullseye all year and you still managed to pull it off...well done.

    Don't pay attention to all of this negative banter...regardles as to who won Sectionals this weekend, the negative comments were going to be directed at the winner...just be happy its you :)

    Congrats and Good Luck!!!

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  129. Freemans Teams 3.5 and 4.0 both Dominated at Sectionals the past 2 weekends. Assuming that both teams go with their full squad to Nationals they have to be Heavy Favorites to bring home the National Titles. That's amazing..

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  130. Not sure i recall the blogger saying Hunckler was amazing, but he did have nice comments for his game as of late. I watched that match, Case ran down everything Hunckler hit, but Hunckler was missing a lot of balls too. Most likely due to the fact that Chad got to everything. Although Chad was quite obnoxious, both on and off the court, THUMBS UP TO CHAD!!!!! Hunckler has had good results this year.

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  131. What a joke league is. Teams full of cheaters and sandbaggers are congratualted and encouraged. I hope San Antonio reunites next year so you guys can all talk about what great 4.5's they have and what great competitors they are while you scramble to find 5.5 players to compete with theirs.

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  132. Yeah Hunckler is a good example of H Town Hackers logic, which says if a strong 4.5 plays another strong 4.5, a 6-0, 6-1 beating makes perfect sense and the winner is just a good 4.5. I'm sure Hacker's league teams when he ran them are what have inspired Red Benzon and Tim Green.

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  133. Is Tim Green really a 4.5 or a 5.0?

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  134. Wow, I go out of town for 2 days and the message board grew almost three-fold. Looks like we have people from SA, Dallas, and Austin too. I'm sure our resident blogger is elated.

    To be perfectly honest, I was there on Sunday to watch both Houston teams. As it turns out, I got to see a lot of the Austin team.

    Aside from the 3rd set tiebreak in Odi's match against Case, I thought everything went smoothly.

    Case, in my opinion, went a little overboard...but hey, it's Sectionals! Everyone is a little more amped up in Sectionals. Even I let out a few more expletives when I play in big matches.

    The few commenters above me wrote, "regardless as to who won Sectionals this weekend, the negative comments were going to be directed at the winner." He/She is right.

    The Austin team wasn't classless and neither were any of the Houston teams either. I'll go even further and say that Red was a good sport too.

    Were there times that Case was a little of a p***k? Of course. But some guys can come off badly on court, but be cool guys off of it. I know a few like that. Some are on my team.

    I'm sure Jimmy regrets storming across 3 courts and confronting the a few of the Austin team after Odi's match with Case. It's not exactly his finest moment, especially since he's the captain...

    Tim didn't come off too well either, I thought. I wish he would have closed his mouth after the semis, but he kept going on and on (through the finals too) about how David B. couldn't make that match and how their team should have gone to the finals and setup a rematch of the city championships. Again, probably not his finest moment either.

    Coming from Houston, it's easy to see the opponent as an enemy and scrutinize everything. i.e. the Austin lineup versus Ft. Worth, the towel incident (don't know why he did it???), the kicking the ball incident (looked like accident), the service line call (who knows? that serve was so hard, no one could see), etc.

    By the way, I would have played my players too if I had the opportunity to play them against Ft Worth. As a captain, you owe nothing to the other teams. If a match comes up and you have a chance to play other people, you do it. The SA and/or Dallas guys are just sore.

    Congrats to the Austin team and both Houston teams. All of y'all had a great season.

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  135. Mike,

    The reason it felt like your finals match was Austin versus Harris County was simply b/c we pretty much had three teams at Sectionals, two of them were playing on Sunday.
    Simple truth: friends support other friends
    It was not because we thought the Austin team was classless. You guys are not.
    The one or two people that wrote that are still disappointed, I sure. The thing is, I think I know who wrote those comments too.
    Glad to have you on the message board.

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  136. Look, I think we all have to understand that people may over react "in the heat of battle." Two years ago my team lost to Red, Tim, et al. 3-2 in the finals and it was rough. Those guys were celebrating and we were left thinking about the two match points we had in Red's doubles match. Bourne has climbing on the fencing yelling his head off. But, that's the way it goes, I don't fault people for the way they react in those moments, especially the younger guys. -AT

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  137. Hard to feel sorry for Tim's loss. His league results are dependent on his ringers, and looks like they left him high and dry this year.

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  138. Speaking of league, I did not agree with having 3 flights this summer in 4.5, when it easily have been 2. Why force every team to play each other 3 times? Typically that means the top 2 beat up on the remaining teams in the flight, and opens the door for a lot of meaningless matches at the end of the season. Wouldn't it be better to reduce the number of flights and have the better teams play each other?

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  139. At least the Houston teams support each other. I had several Dallas and Austin players come up to me indicating that they were hoping we would beat their respective team/our opponent.

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  140. That would have been really fun to see if the Mob Squad was playing and Chad pulled that stuff against them. Can you say let's get ready to rumble!

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  141. Mob Squads Duo of Phan and Phoummarath would have matched up well against Austin's Case and Holland but the Doubles would have been a Toss up.

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  142. Sorry...been working today so just read the comments. First of all, I never said Hunckler was "amazing". You can search the blog to refresh your memory if you like.

    Secondly, the main reason I DON'T classify Case as a "super ringer" is because I believe he did everything correctly, playing hard in 2005 and getting a computer rating, and again playing hard in all his matches this year without tanking. The computer makes the decision, and he was deemed 4.5. As was Holland. I'm much more likely to be suspicious of self-rateds (e.g. Grant Murphy) as possible "ringers" or even those players who have some suspicious losses on their resumes.

    Incidentally I did see Case play one of my teammates in 2005 and though he won fairly easily, I didn't think he was out of level by any means. He may have improved drastically since then.

    The crack about how I ran teams when i was (nominally) captain has SOME validity, so I'll not defend myself there.

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  143. Ok so this proves the blogger is probably Greg Dwyer. If it isn't him it is probably someone else on the Mob Squad. Case played Santesteban in 2005 sectionals and won easily.

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  144. 3.5 Dallas Captain here. I have to say as one guy mentioned this is a great flight. I don't know most of the players you all talk about but we have the same guys up here they just have different names. I would disagree a little with the fact we don't support each other. There are a few teams that don't like each other but most of all I got a lot of support during our sectionals run and condolences after Freeman's team crushed us. I will say it is tough to pool players together here because everyone wants to say their "friends" got together and won but I will just forward this site to all of them to show them your tennis community is a good example. I would love to have as many leagues as you all do, we have Spring and Fall and that is it. Especially so we can tank some matches and get back to 3.5 :)

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  145. I'm not sure why, but I suspect the ill feelings may be more intense at the higher levels. I'm wondering how Freeman-friendly this blog would be if he had a 4.5 or 5.0 team that dominated the way they did at 3.5 and 4.0...

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  146. Maybe we'll find out next year ; ). However, for now I like the Freeman-friendly version.

    Cary (Dallas 3.5 captain), I don't think we crushed you guys at all. We just got some favorable matchups...you switch your singles and you/Trae play line 1 and you guys would probably be going to Vegas...we had good matchups all weekend (3.5s and 4.0s).

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  147. I am curious as to why most of you don't give your identity when you post? I can understand why people would want to hide behind "anonymous" while posting negative comments but I don't understand why you won't identify yourself when posting normal comments or casual banter. Am I missing something? Should I be posting behind the "anonymous" wall myself?

    Just Curious.

    I enjoy reading comments from people I know or that I have heard of (other captains, players, etc...)...it seems to add more context to the comment. Also, I tend to brush off and ignore comments from "anonymous" since I truly believe most of them are coming from the 2 or 3 people trying to stir things up...I guess I enjoy that as well.

    So much for me staying away from tennis for any meaningful time.

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  148. Cary (Dallas 3.5 Cap)
    I have to figure out the non-anonymous thing on this site before I start one up here in Dallas.

    Jason:
    Maybe "crushed" wasn't the right word but definitely beaten. I think this should be a Freeman friendly blog. I only have known Jason for two hours on the court but for the super-team forming cap he is, he is also easily one of the nicest "great" captains I have run into. Most caps in So. Cal where I started were complete a**holes. We knew what was coming with your team and our lineup was tough to choose. We went through many scenarios but our regular #1 dubs team was missing a partner so we decided to mix things up. Ed is one of my strongest players but just melted after being up 5-2 v. Ismael. My guys have rehashed the match for two weeks now but we have decided to put a moratorium on taking about alternate lineups. I actually wanted to play you and Michael, I thought Trae and I matched up better against you all then Daniel and his partner. (Guess I was wrong, oh well), I can honestly say it was a great match and we enjoyed playing against players as strong as us since we hadn't seen that all year.

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  149. Cary (Dallas 3.5 now 4.0 cap)
    I also said I was going to give tennis a break but look at me now. Blogging on a Houston website at 11:55P on a Wed. League tennis is much like CRACK is it not???

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  150. Someone mentioned above that there should only be two divisions of 4.5 teams at sectionals. I disagree, having three divisions and therefore three round robin matches gives the captains a chance to play the players that wouldn't normally get to play. Also, who wants to come to Dallas to only play two matches and then go home if your team loses? My team lost but we were still excited to play that last match even though we wouldn't be in the semi's. I look at it as an honor just to be there. Besides, tennis is fun and you get to play with and against some of the states best players.

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  151. I think they were talking about the Houston local league

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  152. Man Freeman Has To Go to Vegas for 3.5 Nationals and Tucson for 4.0 Nationals. When he wins Both National Titles he'll be exhausted.

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  153. It will be a happy exhaustion, though. Depending on what happens in Vegas, he might also be broke ;-)

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  154. Does anyone know how calculations will be made if you got a Midyear Rating say from 5.0 to 4.5 or 4.5 to 4.0. If you got a Midyear rating and don't play anymore Leagues or tournaments does that mean you will most likely keep that Midyear rating at year end?

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  155. It all boils down to how the Texas Benchmark players do at Nationals. If they do poorly then a lot of those mid-year ratings will go down. If they do well and you beat one of the benchmarks or are competitve than it could hold or you could even get bumped w/o even being bumped mid-year.

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  156. Cary,

    Tell your singles guy not to be to disappointed about his "meltdown" against Ismael...he has that effect on everyone. He is my favorite player out of both rosters (don't tell Sarosh or Kern, they are very sensitive). The guy does not know how to lose...he is not a ringer, he just never loses. I would feel comfortable playing him in a singles line on my 4.0 team.

    He has only been playing tennis for 1 year and bet he'll be making some noise in the 4.5s within 2-3 years...NO ONE, at any level, is in better shape than he is. He is the reason my fat-ass gets to play doubles :)

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  157. I know that Austin by far was the Favorite and did prevail but for the Years to come does this mean that any player whether Benchmark or Computer or Self Rate is not safe from a Dynamic DQ.I always feel like the person in singles or in doubles can have a bad day and get wiped off the court,therfore the scores are not competitive to the computer and Don't think that it's always going to be correct on who gets DQ'ed.

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  158. Noone is immune from getting DQd. The main difference is the penalty. I believe a self-rated DQ means you lose all your matches whereas a computer-rated DQ only loses the last match they played in. There will always be questionable DQs and questionable players who don't get DQd according to the computer. Anyone who has been a captain for more than 5 years knows that this system is still better than the years of visual rating and verifiers.

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  159. Let me be the first to say that Freeman is not that great. He's fat, slow, unattractive and a downright pitiful player. He has Michael to carry him every match just like Patton used to in years past. Don't worry you'll all be coming around to my side when you see him trying to compete with the bigger boys next year both on the court and in the recruiting arena. Oh and by the way Ismael is my favorite player on either of your teams as well.
    -Kern

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  160. BTW a computer DQ at Sectionals causes a forfeit of all matches played, just ask the Dallas Women's 4.0 Team who went 4-0 in pool play then their singles player who was a Benchmark got DQ'ed so instead of Semi's they drop to 2-2 and miss out.

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  161. I can't disagree with any of that.

    I told you guys he (Kern) was sensitive...with absolutely no ego as you can tell. Like Ricky Bobby, he wakes up in the morning and "pisses excellence."

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  162. Just for Grins which Team will Kern play for Next Year in 4.5's. A Fort Worth team or a Houston Team? I'm sure everyone in Ft. Worth wants a Solid Player Like him to add Depth to their Team. Is Veileux getting bumped as well?Don't know the 3.5's that well but could they win a line from the 4.0 Sectional Champs Freeman Captained?

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  163. Kern's a great guy and a very good player. He will be an asset to any 4.5 team.

    Hacker

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  164. Ok folks...

    What's with these guys who appeal down their computer ratings? We all know who you are... What kind of insecure chickens**t needs to beat up on people rated below them?

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  165. Some of the 3.5 guys have taken sets and even matches off of the 4.0 guys. However, if they matched it straight up then the 3.5s wouldn't get a set...as they shouldn't.

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  166. I saw the 4.5 City Championships as well as some of the 4.5 Sectionals and I have no doubt that I'm not at the level that would interest any of those top teams. There won't be much interest in my place, in either Fort Worth or Houston, on a 4.5 team bound for Sectionals. I'll simply be, hopefully, a middle of the road 4.5 that noone will care who he plays for. That's the nature of the beast.
    -Kern

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  167. We all know how the game is played. These so called great captains know the system and knows how to find the loop holes with-in to win. Players are often appealed down after being bumped up and told to tank matches during the fall and spring in order to obtain a solid computer rating that can not be protested. That is why we have so much controversy these past few years. There is no need to be polite. Everyone knows this if they have been involved in the leagues for the past couple of years. That being said I do congradulate them for a job well scamed.

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  168. I think part of the problem is Houston doesn't have a 2.5 or 3.0 league. EVERYONE plays in 3.5 above and it creates a trickle up affect. The 2.5/3.0 players are playing 3.5 in HTA league, 3.5s play 4.0, 4.0s play 4.5, etc. It's a well known fact that players play up in HTA league. But that also creates a fall sense of the level you should be playing in.

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  169. On another note, how about Mixed? What happened to Red and Tim's 9.0 Mixed dream team? and does Lupe's 10.0 team stand a chance.

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  170. The 9.0 Mixed was won by the Team from Mason Creek in Katy. They had a Great Team with alot of Experience.

    The 10.0 Team is going to have a tough time mainly because the level jumps so High when you have 2 5.0's who are really 5.5's or better,but who knows it ionly takes 2 lines in Mixed to win.

    Nobody really pays to much attention to Mixed and it's funny the last poster would even comment that Tim and Red had a Mixed Dream Team. He must be Really Bored...

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  171. Does anyone think that If Houston was to move our Thursday USTA Summer League to Saturdays like Dallas,San Antonio and Austin it would benefit us. I like how they play 2 out 3 regular scoring with a 3rd set 10pt Tiebreaker as opposed to No-Ad.
    I also think that we should have a Spring League like Dallas to make Tennis more competitive Year Round. At Least its something to look forward to for the City Playoffs come July. Any Opinions?

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  172. I think a better assessment of the so called 9.0 Mixed Dream Team was more an over-inflated ego/over confidence on the part of Karin Farquhar and Susanne (and not Red/Tim). Ditto on noone really cares about Mixed - don't even think Red or Tim do. I wasn't the only one happy to see them knocked out by the Mason Creek team.

    It actually makes me think higher of Hollis that she didn't add them to her Nationals bound women's team this year as they were both rated down at the beginning of the year. They were both on her 2005 Nationals team.

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  173. We have a Mixed Doubles league in Houston?

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  174. Mixed is for league die hards only. And for guys that like to pummel the womens players.

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  175. Everyone is nice to Freeman because 3.5 tennis is much like tennis for retards. As this site is dominated by 4.5/5.0 mens players with the exception of B Hollis and Freeman, no one really gives a shit about 4.0 either. Once you get bumped up to 4.5, then you are playing in the big leagues. 3.5/4.0 is for newbies and fat people. Now I will just sit back and hide behind my wall of anonimity. Out.

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  176. to the previous anonymous poster...

    get a life, moron!

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  177. How about odds on who's going to be rated up a level in 4.5?
    My bet is that Armstrong, Dibuas', and Hurlbert get bumped up to 5.0. Don't think anyone from the Hangovers is except for maybe Red. Safe to say Kingwood Crush will struggle next year.

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  178. just a simple 3.5 retard hereAugust 21, 2007 at 10:52 PM

    I'm just happy that they even let us fat retards play at all, not to mention that we are also slow, short, sickly, unpatriotic, balding, communists,
    felons and really bad spellers. However, we are great lovers and that should count for something. ;)

    And by great I mean below-average at best.

    And by below-average I mean terrible.

    Who am I kidding, we all know 3.5s/4.0s are too fat and retarded to ever even get the opportunity to be God-awful. IF ONLY WE WERE 4.5 or BETTER!!!!

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  179. The Dibuas definitely candidates to get bumped up. Odion more so than Omon though. I'd say Hurlbert is also on the verge of getting Bumped as well. Armstrong will stay 4.5 though, he has loss some matches this year which still keeps him as a High End 4.5.
    On the Hangovers Grant Murphy is a possible Year End 5.0 due to some Good Wins at Sectionals over quality opponents. Red will not get bumped because of a poor showing at Sectionals and mediocre tournament results.

    Out of the Mid Year bump downs from 5.0 to 4.5 Who do you think will get Bumped Back up? Mazique?Cuesta? Putterman and Weingeist?

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  180. To: Simple 3.5 Retard

    Answer: TAKE LESSONS and you too can become an arrogant, sandbagging, jacka$$. Somehow, I'd rather keep my dignity (and sanity) and stay at 3.5/4.0!

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  181. The Dibuas have lost matches, though in the regular season and sectionals. Does a guy that gets bumped up have to not lose any matches like Atsushi? Dustin Philips has kicked butt all season save for one really quick loss to some higher end opens player. Will he definitely be bumped up?

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  182. In 2005, Cori Mullins lost all 3 of her matches (all were 3rd set TBs) and she was bumped. Susanne Andersson lost a doubs match at Nationals and was bumped. Jesselyn Reed lost a regular season match and she was bumped. Those were the only 3 that were bumped from that team and all 3 had losses.

    From the 2006 Women's 4.5 Nationals team, So Youn Youn had a couple of losses at both Sectionals and Nationals and she was bumped to 5.0.

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  183. Even if they get bumoed they will just pay TTA to appeal back down as that seems to be the easy way out rather than playing your true level. Just look at Holland last year, he never should have been allowed an appeal.

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  184. Phillips is a good example of what a joke the self ratings system is. Red is probably still kicking himself over not picking him up for the Hangovers.

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  185. Looking ahead. What if Houston were to try and put all things aside and created a 4.5 or 5.0 "Dream Team", in the same way Jason Freeman did - with arguably legitimate players (of course this is subjective and could cause another line of bashing and name calling). What would it be??? Let's assume the usualy suspects have been bumped. We all know who they are - their name has been plastered all over the blog.

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  186. Phillips was protested but was given a Self Rating 4.5 okay by the Texas Section.Why would Red kick himself for not recruiting Phillips obviously the person does not know how good Phillips really is compared to some of the guys on the Hangovers.

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  187. Although the Hangovers Lost as well as Kingwood Crush you don't hear them complaining about How Spectacular Austin was or How out of Level they where. The Fact of the matter is they lost and will Hopefully be Competitive again next Summer. Every City in the State of Texas has out of level players but it just so Happens Houston is the only ones that get called out.

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  188. I agree with the above poster. Chad Case kicked my a** and i am not complaining. And by no means do i think he is a 4.5 "ringer", but he is definitely a very good, tough competitor. Maybe there were a few questionable 4.5 players at Sectionals, THERE ALWAYS WILL BE. Getting my a** kicked just gives me the incentive to get on the court and compete harder so that next year I will hopefully be the better player at Sectionals if I make it.

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  189. Hey, I justed wanted to check and see if anyone knows of a 4.5 HTA Doubles team in need of a line 1 or line 2 team as Jochen Moser and I are looking to join a team to get some good matches going in to the end of tournament season. Let me if anyone is interested...or just bash me for asking, whichever you choose. DK

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  190. Red will take you for his 3.5 team.

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  191. The Fall or Spring 4.5 doubles is not very competitive unless you like beating up on mostly 3.5 and 4.0 players.

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  192. Yeah isn't Red putting together a women's 2.5 dream team? A small operation and you'll be all set for some doubles action.

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  193. You guys are Ridiculous.League season is over and still the same people posting stupid comment,which makes me wonder how good any of the Tennis Players really are on this Blog....

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  194. I know that the Fall League is fun but do people really paricipate for the Good Competition or just to play?

    I like how the Winner of the Dallas Spring League gives you a wilcard into the summer playoffs.That gives a team some incentive to play for.

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  195. If the Mob Squad would have played this year who do you think would have made it to Sectionals between Mob Squad,Kingwood Crush and Hangovers???

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  196. Mob Squad has always had the Best Singles players with Phan/Phoummarath/Gonzalez/Vu.It would have been interesting to see them play,Hopefully they will participate next year to make this Blog even more exciting.

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  197. Now that the sniping has died down, and this thread has 200 posts, how about starting a new thread, maybe one about the Houston teams going to nationals, and what we can do to help them?

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  198. I am from Dallas and I do like the way they have set up the Fall league here. Because of the automatic berth to the City Championships in the Spring it makes us start planning for next year almost immediately. We have to keep 70% of the same roster to get that automatic berth. I wish our team would have had the automatic last year and I wouldn't have gotten a player DQ'ed but Dallas regular season is tough so it is hard to hide "ringers" I mean "slightly above average players."

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  199. C'Mon Nov 30 - this blog is going to be jammin on Dec 1, the day after year end ratings come out. Until then, I imagine things will be quiet here.

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  200. What about all the Houston Dominance in Womens 4.5? 3 yrs in a row Houston womens 4.5 have made it to Nationals. That's impressive!

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