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Mainers Missy McDougald and Shannon Eastman Take Women’s Seacoast Invitational
October 28, 2014
York Paddle Tennis Club and Arundel Paddle Tennis Club hosted the second annual Seacoast Platform Tennis Invitational on October 24th and 25th, just six months after the first annual tournament. Both clubs are two court facilities with spacious decks in rural settings. (With assistance from an APTA grant in 2012, York Paddle Tennis was able to build a second court, making tournaments like this one possible.) Players hailed from a number of locations, in addition to York and Arundel, including: Kinfolk Paddle Club in Southwest Harbor, Maine; Brookline Paddle Club, Brookline, Massachusetts; Shelter Harbor Paddle Tennis Club, Westerly, Rhode Island; Brae Burn Country Club, Newton, MA; as well as other clubs and private courts in NH, MA, and CT. Many of the players were participating in their first APTA tournament, but there wasn’t much “B minus” about the level. Hard drives, spinny serves, and odd body torques were all in evidence.
Generously sponsored by People’s United Wealth Management, the event was well appointed and thoughtfully designed. With a total of 40 teams for the 3 events—12 each in Men’s and Women’s and 16 in Mixed—this was surely the largest paddle tournament yet held in Maine.
On Saturday, the men’s and women’s categories enjoyed summerlike weather with overzealous screen shots going awry. Like a “Tin Cup” moment, one of the woman’s shots flew over a screen, bounced on the deck, went through the hut door, out an open window, and landed in the parking lot. Point lost but huge props for originality. A lovely cocktail party hosted by The Stage Neck Inn at York Harbor capped off the first day of play.
On the women’s side, Missy McDougald and Sharon Eastman (Arundel) pulled out a three-set win over Melanie Gagnier and Betsy Leggat (Brookline), 6-3, 3-6, 6-4. (See image below). All the women took home beautiful succulent planters (from Wentworth Greenhouses) as prizes.
In the consolation round, winners Katherine Foster and Catherine Sherman (York) battled it out with Anna Asphar and Erica Curtis (Brookline), taking home a chocolate reward (by R&R Chocolates).
MEN’S Peter Barrett (York PTC) and Tim Rives (Highfield Club, Middlebury, CT) defeated last year’s champions Andrew and James Allen (Kinfolk PC). Barrett and Rives had barely survived a tough semi-final battle with Gary York and Bill Nichols (Dollydate Club, Hopkinton, NH) in a third-set super tie-breaker. The other semi-finalists were John Sheehan and Eric Nixon of Arundel PTC.
In the consolation finals, Stan Mescon (Brookline PC) and Tom Dennis (Portsmouth, NH), playing in his first paddle tournament, defeated Steven Hayes and John Martin (Arundel PC).
On Sunday, 16 teams played in an open level contest. It looked like spring break, with everyone on the decks sunning and heckling the locals. As last year’s champion Rob Pease noted, “A compelling mixture of camaraderie and passive-aggressive mind-gaming was displayed by the team of Dave Cox and Megan Shapiro-Ross, who purchased a dozen doughnuts for their opponents, Linda Brenske and Dave “Doughnuts Anonymous” Leal, prior to a semi-final match-up."
In the finals, Leslie Haskins and Nick Raho (RI) defeated unseeded and perennial underdogs Megan Shapiro-Ross and Super Dave Cox (York), 6-4, 6-4. (See image above.) Their obsessive high-fiving may have been their demise, while Haskins and Raho were the picture of professionalism.
The consolation match was a crowd pleaser as well, with Janice and Chuck Auger beating Ginny Vatcher and Chris Adams for Arundel bragging rights. (Image above).
Good T’ Go caterers supplied a generous, healthy, and varied menu. A megabowl of Halloween candy was on hand. Everyone went home well-fed and better dressed then when they came—favors were long-sleeve waffle shirts with the tournament’s lobster logo.
A great big thank you to the sponsorship of People’s United Wealth Management. Thanks also to Rob Pease and Don Booth, co-Tournament Chairs, Linda Brenske for running the women’s day on short notice, Megan Shapiro-Ross for her event planning talent, and Greg Campbell and Peter Lewis for overseeing court and site preparation.
Please take a look at the sponsor’s website: peoples.com