MLP SAN CLEMENTE LIVE EVENT ANALYSIS & UPDATES – SATURDAY FEED!
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Update 11:39 AM. Grandstand Court. Milwaukee Mashers beat New York Hustlers 3-1.
Game 1. Women’s Doubles. Milwaukee Mashers win 21-18.
In an intense battle, the Milwaukee Mashers emerged victorious with a 21-18 win in the first game of the match. Milwaukee’s Lucy Kovalova and Callie Smith showcased their skills and managed to hold off a strong comeback attempt from the New York Hustlers Anna Bight and Lacy Schneemann. With an 18-12 lead, Milwaukee seemed to be in control before the Hustlers called a timeout to regroup. The following rally turned out to be the highlight of the game, as Kovalova and Smith displayed remarkable agility and resilience, defending multiple overhead shots and launching powerful attack volleys. Eventually, Schneemann sealed the point for the Hustlers with an impressive backhand volley. Encouraged by their success, the Hustlers continued to close the gap, with another well-executed backhand volley from Schneemann narrowing New York’s deficit to just one point at 19-18 in favor of Milwaukee. However, the Mashers maintained their composure and solid defense and secured the final two points to close out the game on a high note.
Game 2. Men’s Doubles. New York Hustlers win 21-18.
In an intense battle, Hewett and McGuffin showcased their skills to secure the men’s doubles point for New York, leveling the overall match at one apiece. Hewett’s exceptional double-handed backhand ATP shot proved to be a game-changer, granting New York a 10-7 lead. The Hustlers continued to dominate, extending their advantage to 11-7 during the court changeover. After the switch, Daescu and Wright decided to change sides, with Wright now positioned on the left. This strategic adjustment worked in favor of the Mashers, as Wright’s powerful forehand volley brought Milwaukee within striking distance at 19-18, trailing New York by only one point. However, Hewett and McGuffin remained determined to secure their victory. In a display of finesse, McGuffin executed an impressive poach forehand, splitting the Masher defense and landing the winning shot on the baseline, solidifying the Hustlers’ win.
Game 3. MX1. Mashers win 21-16.
Kovalova and Wright showed why they are one of the top mixed doubles teams in pickleball, leading the Milwaukee Mashers to a well-deserved win in the first mixed double game. The excitement began early on when Tyson McGuffin of the Hustlers concluded a captivating rally with a remarkable backhand volley, igniting the crowd’s enthusiasm. Not to be outdone, Wright showcased his defensive skills by countering McGuffin’s overhead shot with a winning volley, propelling the Mashers to a 12-9 lead. Building upon their momentum, Milwaukee expanded their advantage to 16-10, prompting New York to call a timeout in an attempt to shift the momentum. The game reached its climax with a spectacular rally, where Wright and Kovalova exhibited exceptional agility, defending against multiple overhead shots and displaying their nimble hands. Although McGuffin’s Erne attempt was called for a foot fault, the crowd erupted in appreciation for the tremendous effort exhibited by both teams.
Game 4. MX2. Mashers win 21-15.
Game 4 witnessed the Milwaukee Mashers’ dominance as they secured a convincing victory over the New York Hustlers, sealing their 3-1 win in the match. The standout performer at the start was Mashers Callie Smith, showcasing her remarkable skills with speedy shots and precise attack volleys. Her partner Andrew Daescu, on the other hand, displayed flawless execution of drop shots and resets, contributing to their commanding 11-3 lead before the end change. The Mashers continued their dominance, extending their lead to 13-3 when Smith delivered a forehand put away that grazed the baseline. A standout moment occurred during an exhilarating rally, with Smith capping it off brilliantly by executing a perfectly timed backhand Erne, elevating the Milwaukee Mashers to a 15-7 advantage.
Update 11:50 AM. Court 3. St. Louis Shock beat California BLQK Bears 3-1.
Game 1. Women’s Doubles – Shock win 21-14
Simone Jardim and Allyce Jones of the St. Louis Shock wasted no time as they stormed ahead with a commanding 7-2 lead in the game. Jardim’s aggressive play and Jones’ stellar defense proved to be a winning combination for the Shock. Maintaining their momentum, the Shock held a solid 11-3 advantage at the end change. However, Andrea Koop and Maggie Brascia of the California BLQK Bears demonstrated their resilience by narrowing the gap to 14-9, forcing the Shock to call a timeout. Despite the Bears’ determination, the Shock managed to hold them off and clinch the victory with a final score of 21-14. Keep an eye out for some exciting moments in the match, particularly around the 10-3, 11-3, and 13-4 junctures that are worth reliving.
Game 2. Men’s Doubles. BLQK wins 21-19.
Men’s Doubles kicked off with an intense back and forth exchange in between teams battle. Dylan Frazier and Federico Staksrud from BLQK showcased their aggressive style of play. At 9-6, Lange attempted an ATP shot which BLQK challenged as out. Unfortunately for the Shock, the challenge was unsuccessful, granting BLQK a 10-6 lead. As the teams switched ends, BLQK maintained an 11-7 advantage. The Shock struggled to find their rhythm and fell behind at 14-8. Frazier’s missed return further extended BLQK’s lead to 19-16. Sensing the momentum shifting, BLQK called a timeout at 19-17 in an attempt to disrupt the Shock’s surge. Jay Devillier received a warning for serving too early, prompting a playful exchange with Staksrud. With BLQK ahead 20-18, Jay triumphed in a gripping hands battle against Frazier, bringing the score to 20-19 in favor of BLQK. In the end, BLQK held off the Shock’s electrifying comeback to secure a hard-fought 21-19 victory.
Game 3. MX1. Shock triumph with a 21-16 win
The Shock started off strong, quickly establishing a 6-2 lead. Jones of the Shock displayed her in depth knowledge of pickleball strategy by employing lobs. As the teams reached the switch, the Shock maintained an 11-8 advantage. BLQK was forced to take a timeout when they found themselves trailing at 17-13. Back-to-back missed returns by BLQK widened the gap to 18-13. At 19-14, a member of the Shock called the return out. However, Jones and Lange did not support the call, leading the referee to award the point to BLQK. Nevertheless, the Shock stayed composed and went on to claim a 21-16 victory.
Game 4. MX2. Shock wins 21-15.
This game witnessed some remarkable plays from the St. Louis Shock. Jay Devillier’s flying backhand Erne proved to be a game-changer, propelling the Shock to a 7-5 lead. Shock’s Simone Jardim showcased her skills with an incredible ATP shot after a thrilling rally, further extending their advantage to 9-6. As the game progressed, Jay and Simone continued to impress, demonstrating their expertise on the court. Jay’s precise shot placement continued to set up Jardim for a powerful backhand winners, further solidifying the Shock’s lead. With a comfortable scoreline of 11-6 at the end change, the Shock seemed to be running away with the game, building a commanding 15-8 advantage. However, BLQK fought back tenaciously, clawing their way to narrow the gap to 15-11. BLQK’s Staksrud received a warning for his choice of language, adding an extra layer of intensity to the match. BLQK challenged an out call when they were down 18-12, but the replay confirmed the ball was indeed out. In the end, the Shock emerged victorious with a final score of 21-15, showcasing their skill and determination throughout the match.
Update 12:14 PM. Championship Court. ATX Pickleballers beat New Jersey 5’s 3-2 in Dreambreaker.
In a clash of unbeaten teams, both the ATX Pickleballers and New Jersey 5’s put their flawless 2-0 records on the line, vying for a coveted bye to the Semi-Finals.
Game 1. Men’s Doubles. New Jersey 5’s win 25-23.
The action kicks off with the Men’s Doubles featuring JW Johnson and Gabriel Tardio from ATX against Hayden Patriquin and James Ignatowich of the 5’s. Ignatowich’s one-handed backhand attack volley proves to be lethal, helping the 5’s secure an early 4-0 lead. The 5’s demonstrate their dominance with their adept handling of speed ups and crushing counters, heading into the changeover with a comfortable 11-6 advantage. However, Tardio and Johnson of ATX refuse to back down. They maintain relentless pressure, gradually chipping away at the deficit and keeping the match close, trailing closely at 17-19. Johnson raises the intensity with two consecutive forehand attack volley kills, leveling the score at 19-19 and preventing the 5’s from reaching the crucial 20-point freeze first. Each point becomes a thrilling firefight, with explosive exchanges culminating in massive put-away shots to claim points. The 5’s find their rhythm, stringing together three consecutive points and eventually edging out a hard-fought victory at 25-23 in one of the longest points witnessed during the pool play so far.
Game 2. Women’s Doubles. ATX Pickleballers win 21-14.
The Kawamoto sisters from ATX seem to have adjusted their game plan for this match, opting for a slightly faster style compared to their usual approach. Lea and Anna Leigh from the 5’s, on the other hand, are playing consistently well, resulting in a closer match than anticipated on paper. The Kawamoto sisters go on a 3-point run towards the end of the first half, taking an 11-10 lead before the end change. In an attempt to shift the momentum, the 5’s rearrange their positioning with Waters on the left and Jansen on the right, but they struggle to gain an advantage and opt for a timeout when trailing 11-15. With the Kawamoto sisters displaying relentless counters, the ATX Pickleballers build a significant lead of 18-11, posing a threat to the 5’s 9-game winning streak. The ATX Pickleballers secure their 21-14 victory, showcasing their dominance.
Game 3. MX1. New Jersey 5’s win 21-15.
The youngest mixed doubles duo of the weekend was the 5’s Anna Leigh Waters and Hayden Patriquin as they aim to dictate the pace of the game, taking the initiative in most speed-ups, hand battles, and finishing plays. They head into halftime with an 11-6 lead, showcasing their control. At 8-12, the intensity of the game rises as tensions grow between the young players. ATX’s Gabe Tardio demonstrates his frustration by gesturing the missed ball and expressing his emotions towards Hayden and Anna Leigh. Waters and Patriquin regain their composure and maintain their lead at 18-14, leading the Pickleballers to call a timeout. Despite the ATX Pickleballers’ efforts to stage a comeback, they fall short, with the 5’s securing a 21-15 victory.
Game 4. ATX Picklerballers win 21-15.
The second mixed doubles proved to be a pivotal moment in the game, with Jackie Kawamoto and JW Johnson of the ATX Pickleballers seizing the opportunity and emerging victorious with a score of 21-15. The duo displayed exceptional teamwork and a relentless drive to secure the win. Jackie showcased her prowess on the right side, holding her ground while JW patiently waited for the perfect moment to launch his attack. Their strategy paid off handsomely as every speed-up and counter seemed to work in their favor, allowing them to build a commanding lead of 20-10. However, the New Jersey 5’s weren’t ready to concede defeat just yet. With the freeze rule in effect, every missed opportunity to close out the game resulted in a point for the 5’s, enabling them to narrow the gap and force the ATX Pickleballers to call a timeout. It was a critical juncture, and the pressure was on. But Jackie Kawamoto demonstrated her exceptional skills once again, delivering a well-executed hold and counter down the middle, ultimately propelling the ATX Pickleballers to a remarkable victory in what can only be described as a Dreambreaker moment.
Game 5. Dreambreaker. ATX wins 21-15.
Gabe Tardio vs Hayden Patriquin were tied at 2-2. The match takes a chippy turn when Hayden mishits a return into the net and, instead of returning the ball to Tardio, hits it into the back corner. Tardio seizes the moment and decides to give Hayden a demonstration of how to hit a slice. However, Tardio’s subsequent serve goes long, resulting in a missed opportunity. Jade Kowamoto v Anna Leigh Waters. Jade takes a surprising 3-1 victory, causing a major upset.
JW vs James: JW dominates with a 4-0 lead, consistently targeting James’ backhand and unleashing powerful forehand drive winners. James finds himself in a tough spot and attempts a desperate backhand down the line, but it lands wide.
Update 1:59 PM. Court 3. Florida Smash beats SoCal Hard Eights 3-1.
Women’s Doubles: Florida wins 21-18 Stratman/Newman (SoCal) start strong and take a 7-2 lead. However, the Hard Eights rally back and lead 11-10 at the switch. Jorja Johnson displays her attacking prowess, tying the game 12-12 with an overhead shot. Stratman retaliates with a forehand volley, putting SoCal back in the lead at 15-14. Jorja smashes another overhead, giving Florida a 17-15 advantage. SoCal is forced to call a timeout, trailing 18-15. Jorja Johnson continues to shine with her shot placements. SoCal defends multiple game points but struggles to capitalize on their serves. Florida calls a timeout after regaining the serve, hoping to secure the game on the next point. The Hard Eights save another game point, and both teams struggle to score on the freeze. Stratman ultimately misses the return, allowing Florida to claim the first game with a score of 21-18.
Men’s Doubles: SoCal wins 22-20 SoCal displays an aggressive start with Koller and Riley launching early attacks, gaining a 4-1 lead. Koller’s efforts keep Newman from getting caught in the kitchen. Travis delivers a sharp angled volley that Riley fails to track down, narrowing Florida’s deficit to 7-5. Travis heats up the game, but Riley cools him down with a speed-up shot. SoCal maintains an 11-7 lead at the switch. Riley confidently hits a flying erne, staring down Florida, and making it 12-7. SoCal calls a timeout when Florida mounts a comeback, with the score standing at 12-11. Kyle Yates pulls off an incredible shot in the back corner to save a game point, tying the game at 20-20. Kyle unleashes a powerful forehand speed-up to regain the ball, and Travis misses an ATP, leaving the score still tied at 20-20. Koller steps in and secures the victory with a backhand volley down the middle, winning the game 22-20. It was an amazing display by both teams.
Mixed 1: Florida wins 21-18 Jorja sets the tone by launching frequent attacks. Her defense is exceptional, and Travis defends an ATP from Stratman, winning the point with an overhead shot. Travis leaves another out ball, giving Florida a 6-5 lead. However, he accidentally touches the net post while attempting an erne, resulting in a tie score of 6-6. Jorja Johnson steps on the base of the net, and the point is replayed with the score at 8-6. The Florida Smash leads 11-8 at the end switch. Florida takes a timeout while leading 15-14, aiming to halt SoCal’s momentum. With a string of errors, Florida extends their lead to 18-15. SoCal calls a timeout, trailing 19-15. Florida ultimately takes the game with a score of 21-18.
Mixed 2: Florida Smash wins 23-21. Vivienne David and Kyle Yates (Florida) display excellent teamwork. Lindsey Newman’s erne puts SoCal up 5-4. Vivienne David poaches a backhand volley, which hits the net and drops in, giving the Smash an 8-7 lead. David goes for a forehand speedup at Riley, extending Florida’s lead to 9-7. David showcases her versatility by attacking and resetting behind Riley for a winner. Florida leads 11-9 at the switch. Riley responds during the side change with an ATP, bringing SoCal within one point. David consistently puts away shots with authority. Yates is called for a foot fault after attempting an erne, but Florida maintains a 13-12 lead. Yates hits a drop volley for a winner, tying the game at 16-16. Florida calls a timeout when they trail 19-17 after an incredible inside-out dink volley winner from Lindsey. Riley takes a tumble while trying to reach a ball. Yates hits a beautiful forehand drive to tie the game at 19-19. SoCal calls a timeout to slow down Florida’s momentum. The Smash ties it up at 20-20. Riley misses a pop-up on game point, and Florida stages an amazing rally to tie it at 21-21. In the end, Florida Smash clinches the victory with a score of 23-21. It was undoubtedly the most thrilling match on court 3, and what a comeback it was!
Update 2:06 PM. Championship Court. LA Mad Drops beat Las Vegas Night Owls 3-1.
Game 1. Men’s Doubles. LA Mad Drops win 21-18.
LA Mad Drops triumph with a score of 21-18 In this matchup, four players from Austin, TX take the court, all familiar with each other’s game. Arnold (LA) and Bar (Las Vegas) line up on the backhand sides for their respective teams, aiming to control each point with crosscourt dinks. Arnold initially gains the upper hand, but Bar eventually finds his rhythm. Wilson (LA) and Johns (Las Vegas) hold their ground on the right sides, not giving away any easy points. The game goes back and forth until it reaches 18-18, when the Mad Drops seize an opportunity with Wilson’s openings, taking a 20-18 lead and finishing the game with just one game point attempt.
Game 2. Women’s Doubles. LA Mad Drops win 21-14.
This match kicks off with high energy from the Night Owl ladies as Brascia and Irvine look to play at a fast pace and end points quickly. Parenteau (LA) adjusts and starts utilizing drop shots, placing them low at their opponents’ feet, putting the Mad Drops in a strong position to chip away at their deficit. Tereschenko’s exceptional defense leads to a missed put away by Irvine, tying the game and shifting the momentum in favor of the Mad Drops. The Mad Drops go on a 6-point run, leading 11-7 at halftime. Tereschenko and Parenteau maintain control, extending their lead to 16-11. The Mad Drops’ superb defense transitions into offense, widening the gap to 19-11. Brascia and Irvine struggle to stop the bleeding and ultimately lose the game 14-21, giving the Mad Drops a commanding 2-0 lead.
Game 3. MX1. LA Mad Drops win 21-18.
The LA Mad Drops send Julian Arnold and Catherine Parenteau to close out the match. They start strong, taking an 8-1 lead, including an impressive point at 1-1 that sparks their run. The Las Vegas Night Owls call a timeout to break the opposing team’s momentum. Julian Arnold’s well-disguised speed-ups and straightforward drives create opportunities that they easily capitalize on, reaching 11 points first and limiting the Night Owls to only 5 points. The Mad Drops effectively keep Bar (Las Vegas) honest on the backhand side and elevate their game, leading 14-7. The two teams trade sideouts, which the Night Owls can’t afford, continuing until it’s 17-12. Bar recognizes the urgency and intensifies the game, allowing the Owls to close the gap to 15-17, forcing a timeout. However, it’s not enough as the Mad Drops finish strong, putting on a highlight reel and securing match point.
Game 4. Las Vegas Night Owls win 23-21.
This exciting matchup holds no team standings implications, but both teams are determined not to give away this game easily. The score remains tight, with neither team gaining more than a 3-point lead until the Mad Drops pull ahead at halftime, leading 11-7. The game showcases a standout moment at 12-9, with Wilson’s ATP defense and Colin Johns’ eventual forehand attack volley kill. Colin Johns delivers a sharp crosscourt erne at 11-13, closing the gap with a clean winner. The game becomes all square at 16-16, with Irvine attempting an ATP to take the lead, narrowly missing. The teams go back and forth until it reaches 19-19, but the Mad Drops secure the double freeze at 20-19. Jessie and Colin (Las Vegas) grind and battle, earning themselves a match point at 22-21, but Jessie misses a serve long. She redeems herself on the second opportunity, forcing Irina (Mad Drops) into an ATP attempt that lands wide. Las Vegas gets on the board with a hard-fought victory!
Update 2:18 PM. Grandstand Court. Seattle Pioneers beat Frisco Pandas 3-1.
Game 1. Seattle wins 21-18.
In the women’s game, Seattle emerged victorious with a score of 21-18. Seattle started strong but faced stiff resistance from Frisco, who showed their determination through impressive plays by Grechkina and Padegimaite. Seattle maintained a narrow 11-10 lead at the end change, but after changeover, they went on a 4 point run to extend their lead to 16-12. Frisco fought back, closing the gap to 19-18, but Seattle’s ability to win crucial points secured the win.
Game 2. Seattle wins 21-19.
The men’s game was equally thrilling, with Seattle prevailing with a score of 21-19. The Frisco fans made their presence felt, passionately chanting for their player Zane Navratil. The game started with both teams trading blows, and Ben Johns’ impressive ATP shot gave Seattle an early advantage. Frisco’s Zane Navratil responded with a decisive play, delighting the crowd. Seattle’s Tyler Loong showcased his signature Erne, putting Seattle ahead at 8-7. Frisco fought back and took the lead at 12-11, igniting the crowd. A spectacular rally ensued, with Frisco taking a 17-14 lead. Seattle mounted an impressive comeback to tie the game at 19-19. The defining moments came when Tyler Loong fought his way to the net in a grueling 50-shot rally, putting Seattle at 20, and Ben Johns sealed the victory with an ATP game winner.
Game 3. MX1. Frisco wins 21-17.
The first mixed doubles game was a thrilling contest, with Frisco emerging as the winners with a score of 21-17. Both teams displayed exceptional skills, and the score was tight at the break once again, with Seattle holding a slight lead. Frisco’s DJ Young showcased his power and varied shots, while Tyler Loong had a standout performance for Seattle. Frisco’s Grechkina and Young fought hard and took the lead at 18-15, with Grechkina’s powerful two-hand backhands making a significant impact. Seattle tried to make a comeback, but Frisco closed the game with a clean winner from Grechkina.
Game 4. MX2. Seattle wins 21-16
In the second mixed doubles game, Seattle bounced back and secured a 21-16 victory. The crowd cheered for Zane Navratil as he took the court, creating an electric atmosphere. Ben Johns wowed the spectators with a remarkable play, executing a Bert in front of his partner Etta Wright. Frisco’s Zane Navratil responded with an incredible Erne, making the score 15-17. However, Ben Johns showcased his dominance with exceptional putaways at 19-16 and 20-16, ultimately sealing the match in Seattle’s favor.
Update 3:41 PM. Championship Court. Challenger League Final. Dallas Pickleball Club wins Challenger League Final against the Chicago Slice.
Game 1. Women’s Doubles. Dallas Pickleball Club beats the Chicago Slice 21-16.
Dallas Pickleball Club triumphed over the Chicago Slice with a score of 21-16. Gecheva and Braverman set the tone for Dallas with a strong start, securing the women’s doubles point. Gecheva displayed incredible defensive skills, while Braverman added pressure on Chicago with her aggressive playstyle.
The match witnessed several notable points that added to the excitement. Braverman showcased her versatility with an impressive ATP shot and a tweener, leaving Chicago scrambling. However, Chicago fought back, with Emily Ackerman sealing a point with a volley winner, narrowing the score to 10-9 in favor of Chicago Slice. Ackerman’s nifty backhand winner further reduced Chicago’s deficit to just one point at 9-8. In a fierce firefight, Ackerman displayed her solid skillset with a backhand winner, keeping the Slice within striking distance at 16-15. Gecheva contributed a remarkable backhand volley, extending Dallas’ lead to 19-16. The game concluded when one of Braverman’s attacks hit the net-cord, resulting in a winning point for Dallas.
Update 3:07 PM. Game 2. Men’s Doubles. Dallas Pickleball Club beats the Chicago Slice 21-19.
In a men’s doubles game that mirrored the women’s game, the Dallas Pickleball Club emerged victorious over the Chicago Slice with a tight score of 21-19. Similar to the women’s match, the final point was decided by a net cord, leaving Slice fans disappointed. The men’s matchup showcased a thrilling back-and-forth affair, with the lively crowd erupting in cheers throughout the game, thanks to numerous exhilarating rallies. Ultimately, the duo of De La Rosa and Newell from the Dallas team secured the men’s point.
Both teams struggled to establish a significant lead, keeping the tension high. However, Chicago managed to carve out a 13-10 advantage after winning a rally that featured an incredible tweener reset by Dallas’ Newell. Dallas responded with a dose of Shake and Bake when De La Rosa executed a decisive forehand volley, courtesy of Newell’s powerful drive, narrowing their deficit to just one point at 13-12. A spectacular rally unfolded, and Newell concluded it with a display of finesse, delivering a soft-hands volley after attempting several slams, pushing the score to 18-15 in Dallas’ favor. Another noteworthy moment came when DeHeart executed a remarkable backhand slice in response to a De La Rosa overhead shot, cutting Dallas’ lead to a mere 20-19. However, the hopes of Chicago fans were dashed shortly thereafter, as the dreaded net cord sealed their defeat.
Update 3:22 PM. Game 3. Mixed Doubles. Chicago Slice beats Dallas Pickleball Club 21-19.
In a thrilling mixed doubles matchup, the Chicago Slice emerged victorious with a hard-fought 21-19 win over the Dallas Pickleball Club. Barr and Garnett of Chicago showcased their resilience and determination as they faced off against Dallas’ De La Rosa and Gecheva in this closely contested game.
From the outset, the match proved to be a nail-biter, with neither team gaining a significant advantage. The tension reached its peak when Garnett prevailed in a hands battle, leveling the score at 14 apiece. In the ensuing rally, Barr delivered a superb down the line dink, giving Chicago a narrow 15-14 lead. However, De La Rosa showcased his skills with an Erne shot, equalizing the game at 16. As the game progressed, a formidable forehand speed-up by Barr granted Chicago an 18-16 advantage. Barr’s tenacity was further evident when he challenged De La Rosa’s serve, alleging an illegal serve. However, the serve was ultimately deemed legal, resulting in a leveled score at 18. Undeterred by this adversity, Garnett and Barr rallied together to close out the game and secure victory for the Chicago Slice.
Update 3:40 PM. Game 4. Mixed Doubles. Dallas Pickleball Club beats Chicago Slice 21-12.
In a dominant display, Braverman and Newell propelled the Dallas Pickleball Club to a resounding victory in the second mixed doubles game, securing their team’s first-ever Challenger League title. Right from the start, Braverman and Newell showcased their skill and control, leaving little room for their opponents to mount a comeback.
Braverman’s consistent and precise drops and resets exemplified her exceptional play throughout the tournament in San Clemente, ultimately earning her the well-deserved title of Challenger MVP. Meanwhile, Newell electrified the crowd with a series of highlight-reel plays that had spectators on their feet, showcasing his remarkable talent on the court.
The game began with back-to-back forehand-volley winners by Newell, propelling Dallas to an early 8-4 lead. Although DeHeart’s poach reduced the deficit to just two at 8-6, Newell’s powerful forehand drive extended Dallas’ advantage to 11-7 at the court changeover. Dallas carried their momentum into the next phase of the game. A perfectly executed shake and bake play culminated in a Newell shot that struck the net cord and left Ackerman unable to respond, increasing Dallas’ lead to 15-7. Newell continued to shine with a sensational Erne shot, securing a commanding 17-9 advantage for Dallas. Despite Ackerman’s impressive hands battle victory, trimming the Dallas lead to 17-11, it was Newell who concluded the game and the match with a series of aggressive forehand speed ups, solidifying Dallas’ well-deserved victory.
Update 4:30 PM. Championship Court. Premier League Quarterfinal. The New Jersey 5s beat the Los Angeles Mad Drops 3-1.
Update 4:42 PM. Game 1. Men’s Doubles. New Jersey 5’s beat LA Mad Drops 21-19.
In a thrilling clash on the Championship Court, the New Jersey 5’s faced off against the Los Angeles Mad Drops in a highly competitive men’s doubles game. From the very first point, the intensity was palpable, with both teams displaying their skills and determination.
The game kicked off with a lengthy rally, culminating in an impressive backhand speed-up by Ignatowich, met by a swift forehand counter from Thomas Wilson. Both sides exhibited patience and precision, as each shot was met with a swift response, keeping the ball in constant motion.
A quick 4 point run by the Mad Drops was immediately countered by a resolute response from the 5’s, matching them with a 4 point run of their own, bringing the score to a deadlock at 4-4. The intensity continued to rise as the game progressed, and the New Jersey 5’s capitalized on two unforced errors from Arnold, prompting Hayden to humorously display a peace sign, signifying his awareness of Arnold’s struggles.
Arnold, undeterred by the banter, refocused and delivered two pivotal points, bringing the Mad Drops level at 9-9. The 5’s remained steadfast in their game plan, targeting Arnold and securing the next two points, taking a slim 11-9 lead into halftime.
The game continued to ebb and flow, with both teams battling relentlessly. At 11-11, a moment of brilliance unfolded as Big H unleashed a deep backhand volley, allowing Thomas Wilson to let the ball pass between his legs, leveling the score once again.
As the match progressed, it became evident that it would be a back-and-forth affair, reaching a tense 16-15 advantage for the Mad Drops. Julian Arnold concluded a fiercely contested point with an impressive erne down the line, punctuating his move with his signature finger wag, showcasing his prowess.
The momentum swung back in favor of the New Jersey 5’s, with James’ strong involvement in earning the next three points. His powerful forehand attacks and precisely placed dinks placed immense pressure on the Mad Drops, propelling the 5’s to an 18-18 tie. A grueling rally ensued, lasting until Ignatowich unleashed a backhand speed-up, met by a resolute backhand counter from Thomas Wilson, resulting in an unreturnable shot that sealed the victory for the 5’s, securing a hard-fought 21-19 triumph.
Throughout the game, every point carried immense weight, with the tension palpable in the air. However, it was the New Jersey 5’s who consistently found a way to excel in crucial moments, securing vital points down the stretch and ultimately emerging victorious with a final score of 21-19.
Update 5:03 PM. Game 2. Women’s Doubles. LA Mad Drops beat New Jersey 5’s 21-17.
Engaged in an exhilarating matchup, the LA Mad Drops triumphed over the New Jersey 5s in a hard-fought women’s doubles game, leveling the overall score at one apiece. Mad Drops’ Parenteau and Tereschenko showcased their resilience and skill to secure the crucial doubles point.
Right from the start, Parenteau displayed exceptional hand speed, emerging victorious in numerous intense exchanges. A magnificent backhand volley finish by Parenteau propelled the Mad Drops to an early 8-3 advantage. However, the 5’s Anna Leigh Waters(ALW) responded with a powerful body-bag shot into Tereschenko, narrowing the gap to 8-6.
Tereschenko retaliated with a well-executed forehand put-away, allowing LA to regain a slim 10-9 lead. The Mad Drops maintained their momentum, securing an 11-9 advantage as they entered the end change.
Trailing 14-9, the 5s called for a timeout and decided to reposition ALW to the right side of the court. Despite the strategic adjustment, the Mad Drops remained unfazed. Parenteau unleashed a blistering forehand blast from the baseline, landing it flawlessly for a clean winner, extending LA’s lead to 16-9.
With the Mad Drops leading 20-15, ALW delivered back-to-back backhand volley winners, reducing the deficit for the 5s to 20-17. Nevertheless, LA regrouped, rebounded, and ultimately sealed the game in their favor. The LA Mad Drops emerged triumphant with a final score of 21-17 in the women’s doubles.
Update 5:36 PM. Game 3. Mixed Doubles. New Jersey 5’s beat the LA Mad Drops 23-21.
The first mixed doubles match kicks off with a burst of energy as the 5’s James Ignatowich and Lea Jansen show no intention of engaging in long rallies. They embrace a high-risk, high-reward approach, aiming to take control of the game from the start. Mad Drop’s Wilson and Tereschenko, on the other hand, gear up with their defensive skills, counters, and resets, setting the stage for an exciting clash of contrasting styles. The game unfolds in a back-and-forth fashion, with the Mad Drops holding a slim 11-9 lead at the end change. The second half continues in the same vein, as both teams showcase their unique strategies. At 16-16, the contrast in styles remains evident. A pivotal moment occurs when Jansen executes a backhand erne down the middle, extending the 5s’ lead to 18-16, the largest margin thus far. Tereschenko’s attempted speed-up falls short, prompting the Mad Drops to call a timeout in an attempt to regroup. At 19-16, an incredible defensive sequence by the Mad Drops culminates in Jansen’s mishit backhand volley, resulting in a short slice winner. However, the Mad Drops maintain their composure and respond with a powerful winner, leading to a double freeze and a timeout called by the New Jersey 5s. Wilson and Tereschenko constantly target Jansen, but Ignatowich’s forehands and remarkable reach make an impact. The game continues in a thrilling back-and-forth manner until the New Jersey 5s secure two consecutive points to seal the victory at 23-21, much to the delight of the fans.
Update 5:56 PM. Game 4. Mixed Doubles. New Jersey 5’s beat the LA Mad Drops 21-12.
Anna Leigh Waters(ALW) and Patriquin combined forces to secure a triumphant 3-1 match victory for the 5s by dominating the second mixed doubles game. The dynamic Gen-Z duo left no doubt with their commanding performance. An explosive ALW speed up caught Parenteau off guard, propelling the 5s to an early 4-3 lead. The Jersey team extended their advantage to 8-4 after Patriquin executed a precisely-placed dink that proved too challenging for the LA Mad Drops to handle. ALW continued to shine, unleashing a powerful forehand attack volley to push the lead to 9-4. Patriquin showcased incredible finesse, executing multiple resets before sealing the point with a backhand overhead winner, stretching the lead to 11-4 at the end-change. Patriquin’s exceptional hand skills were on full display as he consistently neutralized the Mad Drops’ attacks, resulting in a commanding 13-5 lead for the 5s. Despite a comeback attempt by the LA Mad Drops, with Parenteau’s well-timed ATP narrowing the deficit to 13-8 and Arnold winning a fierce battle to make it 13-9, the 5s called a timeout to halt their momentum. The strategic timeout allowed the Jersey team to regain composure and regain control of the game. A surprise speed-up by Patriquin propelled the score to 17-10. Julian Arnold then hit a remarkable backhand flip, cutting LA’s deficit to 19-12. However, it was Jersey who secured the remaining points, including a lightning-fast ALW forehand speed up that sealed the game in their favor. With their dominant performance, Waters and Patriquin propelled the 5s to a resounding victory, leaving the Mad Drops in their wake.
Update 6:20 PM. Championship Court. Premier League Quarterfinal. ATX Pickleballers beat Florida Smash 3-1.
Update 6:42 PM. Game 1. Women’s Doubles. ATX Picklers beat Florida Smash 22-20.
The second quarterfinal match ignited with an intense game between two beyond-talented women’s doubles teams. Jorja Johnson from Florida Smash displayed exceptional form and technique, contributing to her team’s narrow 11-10 lead at the halftime break. The score tied at 14-14 delivered one of the most captivating moments of the match. Both teams unleashed relentless attacks, engaging in a thrilling exchange until ATX’s Jackie Kawamoto attempted an ill-advised lob that sailed outside the line. Undeterred, Florida maintained their momentum, surging ahead 18-15. However, the Kawamoto’s responded with relentless defense matched with their offensive capabilities. Overcoming a 20-18 deficit, they surpassed Florida with a crafty third-shot lob that bewildered the Smash, securing a hard-fought victory for ATX.
Update 7:12 PM. Game 2. Men’s Doubles. ATX Picklers beat Florida Smash 21-19.
ATX emerged victorious with a close 21-19 win in the men’s matchup. The game kicked off with an explosive start, highlighted by Rettenmaier’s impressive Erne shot, securing their second point for Florida. Kyle Yates of Florida Smash showcased his aggressive play by delivering a stunning bodybag shot on ATX’s Gabriel Tardio, earning them their seventh point. Surprising the spectators, Florida held an 11-8 lead heading into the end change. However, the momentum swiftly shifted in the latter half of the game as ATX, fueled by Johnson and Tardio’s lightning-fast hands, stormed ahead to take a 15-13 lead. With several lead changes, ATX eventually pulled away, reaching 20-17 with JW’s remarkable power and agility. Despite a series of intense sideouts, ATX sealed the deal, closing the game with a score of 21-19.
Update 7:33 PM. Game 3. Mixed Doubles. ATX Picklers beat Florida Smash 21-16.
Jorja Johnson and Travis Rettenmaier from the Florida Smash battle it out in a high-stakes game against Gabe Tardio and Jade Kowamoto of the ATX Pickleballers. This game is crucial for the Florida Smash as they desperately need a victory to stay in the game and keep the fight alive. The ATX Pickleballers come out strong, establishing a commanding 8-1 lead. In an attempt to disrupt their momentum, Travis and Jorge of the Florida Smash call for a timeout. However, the ATX Pickleballers maintain their dominance, leading 11-2 at the end change. Gabriel and Jade showcase their aggressive play style, driving the ball on returns and engaging in a fast-paced game, avoiding prolonged rallies. From there they continued to demonstrate exceptional skills at the net, controlling the middle and emerging victorious in intense exchanges. The Florida Smash regrouped and tightened up their game, aiming to chip away at the ATX Pickleballers’ substantial lead and stage a comeback. At 16-20, a challenge call is made, leading to a review, but it ultimately grants ATX a game and match point. The 20-16 point becomes a lengthy battle, but Gabriel seals the match with a winning attack volley, securing a 21-16 victory for the ATX Pickleballers. With this win, the ATX Pickleballers claim a 3-0 overall match victory and advance to the semifinals.