Sunday, October 21, 2018

2018 National Champions: 40 & Over 4.5+ men Southern California

The National Champion was decided for the 40 & Over 4.5+ men today in Las Vegas, and when all was said and done, Southern Cal won it all.

The semis found Northern Cal beating Caribbean 3-2, and Southern Cal beating Eastern 3-2, just one match tie-break in the latter match.  The final between the Californias was 3-2 as well one match tie-break each way with Southern Cal winning.

Congratulations to SoCal on the win!

2018 National Champions: 40 & Over 4.5+ women Pacific Northwest

The National Champion was decided for the 40 & Over 4.5+ women today in Las Vegas, and when all was said and done, Pacific Northwest won it all.

The semis found Southern beating Texas 3-2, and Pacific NW beating NorCal 3-2, each with key match tie-breaks.  The final was 3-2 as well but all straight sets with Pacific NW winning.

Congratulations to PNW on the win!

2018 National Champions: 40 & Over 3.5 women Pacific Northwest

The National Champion was decided for the 40 & Over 3.5 women today in Arlington, TX, and when all was said and done, Pacific Northwest won it all.

It was tight to get into the semis with three teams tied at 3-1 and Florida advancing on head-to-head, and the semis found Pacific NW beating Florida 4-1, and Southern beating Texas 4-1, both as expected.  The final was close Pacific NW winning 3-2 with several close upsets to accomplish it.

Congratulations to PNW on the win!

2018 National Champions: 40 & Over 3.5 men Mid-Atlantic

The National Champion was decided for the 40 & Over 3.5 men today in Arlington, TX, and when all was said and done, Mid-Atlantic won it all.

It was tight to get into the semis with just one 4-0 team and a 6-way tie at 3-1, and the semis found Intermountain beating Middle States 3-2 with two matches decided by match tie-breaks, and Mid-Atlantic beating Eastern 5-0 with five set or match tie-breaks being played.  The final was similarly close but Mid-Atlantic won 3-2 with one match decided in a match tie-break.

All four semifinalists were in my prediction and the finalists were my #2 and #3 teams to make the semis.

Congratulations to Mid-Atlantic on the win!

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Day 2 Update: 40 & Over 3.5 women USTA League Nationals - Head to head comes into play

Day 2 is complete and we now know the semi-finalists for the 3.5 women.

First, it is important to note that despite some rain on Friday, all the matches were played in their full format as the USTA did have a plan to get enough matches played indoors on Friday.  Good move and I think the players appreciated it even if they had to play late Saturday night.

The women did end up with three teams undefeated in Pacific NW, Southern, and Texas.  Then there was a 3-way tie for the 4th spot between Florida, Midwest, and Caribbean.

Caribbean was one court back on the individual court record so they were out, and for the first time I believe this Nationals, the head-to-head came into play, and Florida had beaten Midwest 4-1 in the last match each team played.  This meant Florida advanced and the tie-breaker didn't go to sets lost, which is a good thing for Florida as they lost one more set than Midwest.

So Florida was very clutch as they needed to not just beat Midwest in the last match but do it at least 4-1.  And one of the courts was a match tie-break so I bet it was close.

But, with the semi-finalists, who is the pick to win?  Pacific NW is the pick over Florida, and Southern is the pick over Texas.  The final has Southern the pick to win.

Day 2 Update: 40 & Over 3.5 men USTA League Nationals - Big tie-breaker

Day 2 is complete and we now know the semi-finalists for the 3.5 men.

First, it is important to note that despite some rain on Friday, all the matches were played in their full format as the USTA did have a plan to get enough matches played indoors on Friday.  Good move and I think the players appreciated it even if they had to play late Saturday night.

Despite my simulation indicating there was a good chance of multiple undefeated teams, we ended up with just one, Intermountain, which meant we were going to have a big tie at 3-1.

Eastern was 3-0 going into their last match but sort of had a spot in the semis wrapped up and lost their last one 3-2 to finish 3-1 and 15-5 on courts and get the #2 spot.

Mid-Atlantic lost their first match, and then not only won three straight to get to 3-1, but won their last one 5-0 to move into the #3 spot by themselves at 13-7 on courts.

Then, we had four teams vying for the last spot.  Pacific NW and Southern were 3-1 but just 11-9 on courts which didn't keep them in the running.

Middle States and Texas were both 3-1 and 12-8 on courts so it went to extended tie-breakers.  They didn't play head to head to it went to sets lost where they both lost 16.  Per the rules in play, it then goes to games lost where Middle States lost 8 fewer games so they get the #4 spot.  Note that Texas did win two more sets than Middle States extending two matches to third sets that Middle States didn't, and they also won 19 more games than Middle States so had a larger games won/lost differential, but those aren't included in the current tie-breaker.

In this case, my prediction was spot on as it predicted the four semi-finalists and Texas to be the five teams most likely to make the semis!

Who is favored to win?  Intermountain is the pick over Middle States while Mid-Atlantic is a narrow pick over EasternIntermountain would be the pick in the final.

Good luck teams!

Day 1.5 Update: 40 & Over 3.5 Men USTA League Nationals

Due to rain and altered schedules, day 1 is just finishing up today but with all but one "day 1" match now entered, here is what the simulation looks like now.

Six teams are undefeated, but it appears there is no scenario where they can all remain undefeated, nor even five of them undefeated.  There is a very slim chance of four undefeated so there is a good chance we'll have a tie for at least 4th at 3-1 again.

Here are the teams most likely to be in at least a tie for 4th in order of likelihood:
  • Middle States
  • Intermountain
  • Eastern
  • Texas
  • Northern Cal
  • Southern
  • Hawaii
  • Midwest

Four of the five teams highlighted in the original prediction show up above, just one missing but they could still get to 3-1 and be in the running.

Just the first three have a 4-0 record as the most likely, so a five way tie at 3-1 for one spots is expected, and a few other teams are more likely to finish 2-2 but could join the fray at 3-1.

This could be tight, and with the delays, matches will be going late today so we might not know the semi-finalists until late tonight.