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John Hughes/Marc Powers Breakthrough To The Top at Long Island Grand Prix
December 2-3, 2017
Sometimes, slow and steady wins the race. With everyone expecting a blockbuster final at the Duane Hayden Long Island Invitational between top-ranked Juan Arraya and Jeff Morneau and three-time defending APTA National Champions Drew Broderick and Jared Palmer, the third-seeded team of John Hughes and Marc Powers quietly moved through the draw, downing both of the top two teams en route to the title.
They haven’t had a flashy year, like Arraya, who won five titles with five partners (including one with Morneau) prior to this tournament, but John Hughes and Marc Powers have slowly but surely cemented themselves as one of the best and most consistent teams on the APTA circuit. After four semifinal NRT finishes last season, including one at the Nationals, and two finals appearances this season, at Patterson and Pittsburgh, Hughes and Powers were poised for a breakthrough.
Matched up against the incredibly hot team of Arraya/Morneau in the Long Island semifinals, most people expected the third seeds to go no further. Hughes/Powers seized the moment, however, and survived an incredibly tense and close third set, playing tremendous paddle in the biggest moments to take the match, 6-4, 4-6, 7-5. On the other side of the draw, Broderick/Palmer survived a challenge from unseeded Scott Estes, Jr. and Nathan LeFevre in the quarters, losing the first set in that contest before taking the next two. In the other semifinals, the new team of Anton Bobytskyi and Marco Grangeiro (6), who upset Martin Bostrom and Sebastian Bredberg (4) in the quarters, couldn’t find a way to penetrate the Broderick/Palmer armor, going down in a 6-1, 6-2 semifinal.
Any questions about Hughes/Powers suffering a letdown after taking out Arraya/Morneau were answered when they came out strong in the finals. After losing the first set 6-3, Broderick/Palmer found their rhythm, with Broderick’s overheads doing damage to the Hughes/Powers game. The third set was too close to call, but Hughes/Powers continued to go for their shots while playing perfect defense, and closed out the match for their first Grand Prix title, 6-4, 3-6, 6-4.
Thank you to tournament director Duane Hayden, Huntington Country Club Platform Tennis Director Lisa Rudloff, and LIPTA President Ray Lombardi for running the tournament.
Main Draw: John Hughes/Marc Powers def. Drew Broderick/Jared Palmer, 6-4, 3-6, 6-4
Quarterfinal Reprieve: Peter Berka/Graham McNerney def. Martin Bostrom/Sebastian Bredberg
Reprieve: Rob Bakker/Tyler Fraser def. Andrea Bonfigli/Javier Ferrin-Kranewitter
Round of 32 Consolation: Mike Marino/Dane Schmidgall def. Eric Fey/Guy Moore, 6-3, 6-4
Round of 32 Consolation Reprieve: Mark Ruppert/Rusty Wright def. Matthew Fawcett/Whit Harwood, 6-4, 6-1
Consolation: David Geatz/Mike McManus def. Bhaskar Chowdury/Neeladitya Roy, 1-0 ret.
Consolation Reprieve: Benjamin Abbate/Daniel Casesa def. John McCoy/Peter Morris, 6-2, 6-2