Hard Court Slam at Yale Sees Great Tennis Despite ďObstaclesĒ

The Hard Court Slam at Yale (actually two tournaments Ė the 50, 60, 70 men and women age groups were a Category II national and the 55, 65, 75, 80, 85, 90 menís age groups were a NE tournament) was a great success despite a conflict with the Friendship Cup being played on the same weekend.This resulted in about 20 top NE players not entering.It was promised this would not happen again and that there would be more coordination about Cup dates and significant tournaments in the future..

Another ďobstacleĒ was the weather--it was pouring rain all day on Friday.However, the indoor facility at Yale is great and the tournament did not miss a beat with all indoor play on Friday.It was even heard that some players were glad it rained so they could play their matches indoors in the exceptional indoor facility at Yale.

The Category II national had many out of section players; the states of NY, NJ, Fl, GA, MD, TX, WI, and DC were all represented. For both tournaments, there were a total of 20 out of section players participating, most of which were highly ranked national players.

The Category II National Events

Menís 50s

The menís 50 singles saw some upsets.In the semis, 4th seed Alex Seaver defeated 1st seed Roger Clark 6-3, 6-1.In the other semi, unseeded Peter Appleton defeated 2nd seed Edgardo Quinones 4-6, 6-1, 1-0 retired due to illness.He had apparently caught a bug on his plane ride from Texas.Appleton also defeated 3rd seed Russ Strong in the quarters 6-3, 6-2 to get into the semis.But he did not stop there.Appleton took the final 6-4, 7-6 over Alex Seaver.

Jeff Gerhart won the 50 singles consolation 3-6, 6-4, 7-6(5) in a very close match.

In 50 doubles, 1st seeds Harlan Stone and Jonathan Bates squeaked by Phil Kadesch and Rob Leroy 6-1, 6-7, 6-3 in the semis to get to the finals where they defeated Appleton and Quinones 6-4, 6-4 to take the title.

Womenís 50s

The womenís 50 singles had some amazing tennis!In the semis, 2nd seed Stefanie Lomax played unseeded Abigail Burke from NJ.This was an amazing tennis match, almost like watching a pro match!Abigail defeated Stefanie 7-5, 7-5.She also won the final over 1st seed Carol Redden 7-6, 6-2.In the 3-4 playoff, Laura Parziale defeated Stefanie Lomax 2-6, 6-4, 10-4.

Marika Lindholm won the consolation over Lynn Kaufman, 6-1, 6-0.

Womenís 50 doubles was also interesting.Abigail Burke teamed up with her identical twin sister Cynthia Dardis, were the 1st seeds, and rolled over their opponents winning 6-2, 6-1 in the semis over Carol Redden and Beth Brause 6-2, 6-1 and then took the final 6-1, 6-1 over Marika Lindholm and Laura Parziale 6-1, 6-1.In the 3-4 playoff, Brause and Redden defeated 2nd seeds Amy Read and Linda Folhe 6-4, 6-3.

Menís 60s

The menís 60 singles draw was the largest event with 17 participants.Three of the seeds were from out of section; #1 Carl Sechen from Texas, #2 John Mayotte from Maryland, and #3 Saheed Nowrasteh from Wisconsin.All three out of section seeds made it to the semifinals with the 4th being unseeded Jon Wilson.In the semis, Sechen defeated Wilson 6-2, 6-4 and Mayotte defeated Nowrasteh 6-2, 6-2.Mayotte prevailed in the final over Sechen 6-3, 6-1.

Jon Wilson won the 3-4 playoff, defeating Nowrasteh 4-6, 6-3, 10-6.

There were three 60 doubles teams that played round robin.The team of Stephen Campbell and Gene Chappell won both of their matches to take the crown.

Womenís 60s

In womenís 60 singles, 1st seed Dorcas Miller won her semis match with Nikki Holbrook 7-5, 6-4 and 2nd seed Elizabeth Endicott defeated Margo Chase-Wells 6-0, 6-1.In the final, Endicott upset Miller 7-5, 6-4.

In the consolation final, Nikki Holbrook defeated Lianne Moses 6-2, 6-2.

Womenís 60 doubles had three teams and they played round robin.The team of Andria Wolf and Martha Knieriem won both their matches to take the crown.

Menís 70s

Menís 70 singles also had a strong draw, with the two top seeds in the top 10 in national standings and the 3rd seed also highly rated nationally.In the semis, 1st seed Hill Griffin (from GA) defeated 3rd seed Bill Simonton 7-5, 6-2.In the other semi, there were two unseeded players as the #2 seed (ambidextrous Steve Lunsford) and the #4 seed Wally Weld were defeated by Phil Rockwell and Walter Beatty respectively who then met each other with Beatty prevailing 7-6, 6-1.The consolation singles was won by Ken Miller 6-0, 7-5 over Alan Gardner in the consolation.

In the doubles, Griffin and Lunsford teamed up and were the 1st seeds.Ken Miller and Mal Swanson were the 2nd seeds and they met in the finals with Griffin and Lunsford winning 4-6, 6-0, 6-2.In the 3-4 playoff, Michael Fenster and Rod Taylor defeated Alan Gardner and Rob Chase 6-2, 6-3.

Women's 50 singles winner Abigail Burke with finalist Carol Redden and Jim Purington from USTA/NE


Women's 60 singles finalist Dorcas Miller with winner Elizabeth Endicott.  Relaxing before the party starts!

Women's 70 singles winner Dorcas Miller with finalist Joan Nevins

Men's 70 doubles winners Steve Lunsford and Hill Griffin  with finalists Mal Swanson and Ken Miller.  Griffin also won the 70 singles title.


Womenís 70s

There were only two entries in the womenís 70s, Dorcas Miller and Joan Nevins (from NY).Miller lost to Nevins last year but prevailed this year in a close match 6-3, 7-5.

The New England Section Events

Menís 55s

Menís 55 singles had an upset.Unseeded Manuel Toppins defeated 2nd seed Brigham Metcalfe in one semi 6-4, 6-3.1st seed Ward Jannuzzi defeated Jack McKeon 6-2, 6-1 in the other semi.In the final, 1st seed Jannuzzi defeated Toppins 6-3, 6-3.George Lewis won the consolation, defeating Bill Higgins 6-3, 6-1.

In menís doubles, 1st seeds Richard Makepeace and Kimm Fisher had an unbelievable show of great tennis skill in the final in their victory over 2nd seeds Harlan Stone and Jonathan Bates (the winners of the 50 doubles) by the score of 7-5, 6-7, 6-3.Fisher and Makepeace also had a tough match in the semis, defeating Gregg Garrison and John Voikos 6-1, 5-7, 6-2.

Menís 65s

In menís 65 singles, the seeds pulled through.In the semis, 1st seed Laury Hammel defeated Walt Sadowski 6-4, 6-4 and 2nd seed Rich Klaffky defeated Stephen Campbell 6-0, 6-2.Hammel had a tough match in the final, but prevailed over Klaffky 5-7, 6-0, 6-2.

Menís 75s

2nd seed Mal Swanson defeated Charlie Morris 6-1, 6-4 in one semi and 1st seed Roy Anderson defeated Peter Reiss 6-1, 6-2.Anderson prevailed over Swanson in the final 6-3, 6-2

Menís 80s

There were three entries in the menís 80 singles and they played round robin.Henry Blodget won both his matches, 6-4, 6-0 over Marvin Sears and 6-3, 6-2 over Thomas Zaccheo to win the crown.

55 doubles winners Richard Makepeace and Kimm Fisher with finalists Harlan Stone and Jonathon Bates. Their final was one of the best in the tournament.  Stone and Bates also played down and won the 50 doubles.

Tournament Director Todd Nicholson congratulates 75 singles winner Roy Anderson


The Party!

The party was held Friday night and was a great success.Friday was the rainy day when all matches were played indoors and many players simply stayed after playing to go to the party.

It was nice to see long time player Ray Brodeur who is out of commission all year this year with a knee injury at the party with Candace, his significant other.Ray is also an official and did the umpiring the previous day.Tom Fayed umpired the other days of the tournament.

Like last year, there were some great prizes given out in the drawing.The biggest prize, again like last year, was free time at Saddlebrook for two people.Menís singles semifinalist Manuel Toppins was the beaming winner of this prize.There were also tickets to the US Open and also tickets to the New Haven Open.A Babolotracquet and a tennis bag were other great prizes.

Unfortunately, everyone was having such a good time that nobody took any pictures!