Powers and Hughes upend defending Champions at Western New England Championships

December 9, 2017
Longmeadow, MA

2017 Western NE Men'sA week after edging the number one ranked team and defending champions, Juan Arraya and Jeff Morneau, in the semifinals of The Duane Hayden Long Island Invitational, the third-ranked team of John Hughes and Marc Powers posted a similar result in the Western New England Championships in Longmeadow, MA. The 6-2, 6-2 score in the final was in marked contrast to the usual three set scores experienced in virtually all of the combatants’ recent matches.  Tournament Director Morneau, when asked for the turning point in the match, pointed to “when we lost the first game,” but did not otherwise make excuses for the result. 
The tournament field of twenty-six teams had to endure day long white out conditions as western New England welcomed the season’s first snow storm which dumped 6 inches of snow on the region.   Seeding followed form until the unseeded team of Sven Burus and Roman Stoisavljevic edged the third seeds, Anton Bobytskyl and Marco Grangeiro, in a marathon quarterfinal, 7-6, 5-7, 7-6 (5).  Unfortunately, an ankle injury suffered by the Burus/Stoisavljevic duo early in their semifinals forced them to default the match to Hughes/Powers, an unfortunate turn of events for a team which had survived consecutive three-setters in its earlier rounds.  The top seeded defending champions Arraya and Morneau earned their trip to the final by taking out the fourth seeded team of former National champ Johan du Randt and new partner Stephen Mitchell, in an entertaining three-setter, 6-3, 4-6, 6-4.
Fortunately, the court heaters at all three facilities used were able to combat any accumulation of snow on the courts.  Viking Ball sales and propane futures are expected to soar as the steady snowfall took a toll on the balls in the super-wet conditions, and required constant operation of the heaters.  Back draw winners included Andrew Chan and Adam Mirsky in the consolation; Jerry Albrikes and Karl Gregor in the reprieve final; Bobytskyl/Grangeiro in the quarterfinal Reprieve; and Matt Arciero and Will Herchel in the consolation reprieve draw.
The snowfall made for a festive tournament atmosphere for the steady stream of spectators who attended the event and enjoyed viewing a high level of platform performed in difficult conditions, just another reminder of the uniqueness of this great outdoor sport.

Thank you to tournament director Jeff Morneau, and the Longmeadow Field Club, the Longmeadow Country Club, and Great Horse.

Main Draw: John Hughes/Marc Powers def. Juan Arraya/Jeff Morneau, 6-2, 6-2
Quarterfinal Reprieve: Anton Bobytski/Marco Grangeiro def. Eric Fey/Guy Moore
Reprieve: Jerry Albrikes/Karl Gregor def. Gart/Nolan, 2-6, 7-5, (10-8)
Consolation: Andrew Chan/Adam Mirsky def. Marshall Chapin/Bill Horne, 6-3, 6-3
Consolation Reprieve: Matt Arciero/Will Herchel def. Christian Coley/Ilya Levin, 6-2, 3-6, (10-5)

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