Friday, May 22, 2015

2015 40 & over 3.0 women USTA Pacific Northwest Seattle area local playoffs preview

The regular season has ended for the 40 & over division in USTA League play in the Seattle area and local playoffs are coming up next weekend, May 29 thru 31.  This is the first of several previews I plan to write-up, this one taking a look at the 3.0 women.

In these previews, I'll be looking at the top-8 Estimated Dynamic NTRP Rating average for each team as that should be a pretty good comparison between teams as you'd expect each team to field their best players.  This will avoid lower averages you'd see by averaging the entire roster if you had big rosters with some lower rated players pulling the average down.

So, here are the top-8 averages for the six teams headed to playoffs.  The playoff seed is before the team name.

6 - ETC-Team Fireball-Thornsberry3.10
1 - CAC/SL-Peters3.08
3 - BETC-Mansfield3.02
5 - AYTC-Slice II-Isidro2.94
2 - RBW-Lee2.91
4 - AYTC-Team Golden2.72

The first thing that jumps out is that the order doesn't match the seedings.  This isn't entirely surprising as the teams played in three different sub-flights so didn't all play each other.

The second thing that jumps out is the 2.72 average for Team Golden compared to the others.  How did they make playoffs?  If you look at their record, they went 7-1 and every win was 3-2 and the one loss was 2-3.  So they are perhaps not that deep and that affects the average rating of their top-8, but they seem to find a way to win three courts most matches.  And yes, there were a bunch of teams with higher top-8 averages that didn't make it to playoffs.

So based on this, ETC and CAC/SL should be the favorites right?  Well, with six teams, the top-2 seeds have byes, so ETC will have an extra match to play.  So you might say CAC/SL is the favorite as they have nearly the highest top-8 average and get the first round bye so only have to win two matches.

But as always, average ratings for a team does not tell the whole story which we saw with Team Golden, who specifically plays and the match-ups and how each player plays on the given day goes a long way to determining who is going to win the team match.

Good luck ladies, may the best team win!