The last three teams on the standings have really put themselves into a pickle. When you have 3 rounds to play and you are looking straight down the barrel of play-off elimination, playing a total of 6 matches combined isn’t exactly the way to fight your way up. In fact, collectively, “Mongoose”, “Busting Rails”, and “The Kampai Warriors”, scored 25 points for round 7. (The “Butter Nutz” alone picked up 24.) Now, with 2 rounds to play, the gap to the finals play-off spot has ballooned to 18 points. (The difference between 6th and 7th) Last week it was 1.
I have to admit it is a little disheartening to see how few matches have been played this second half. Typically it isn’t as strong as the first half anyway, but it has been a huge struggle to get people to complete – in some cases any – matches at all. Court usage hasn’t decreased, so what’s the issue??
“Butter Nutz” look poised to end up on top of the ladder at the end of round 9. They still have a bye to sit through (in round 9) but second placed “Foss Nation” have their bye next week. “Winky-Dinks” could potentially catch them but they need a very strong showing in the last 2 weeks to do that. Speaking of which, “Winky-Dinks” picked up a season low 7 bonus points yesterday – they’ll need to do better than that if they wish to claim one of the two top seeds.
Tough matches on tap for last night included: Nick Scavone (“Wardogs”) taking out Kevin Prather (“Winky-Dinks”) with a 2-1 win. Kevin was strong in the volley department and can hustle rather well – Nick simply managed to outlast him in the third game. Julie VandeVusse (“Butter Nutz”) moved the ball around the court effectively to make Jim Smietana (“Foss Nation”) cover more of the floor than he probably wanted to take the 2-1 victory. Peter Ulbrich (“Mongoose”) took advantage of a few too many unforced errors from Joe Schaden (“Busting Rails”) to earn his 2-1 win, and Sante Fratarcangeli found himself a few bucks lighter in the wallet after he bet that John Mann (“Foss Nation”) was going to lose to his “Butter Nutz” team mate Andy Petcoff. I guess when $$ are on the line, John steps it up! He won 3-0.
We are down to the final couple of weeks. March 6 is your deadline to play your matches. Can any of the bottom 3 teams make a surge? Will anyone knock “Butter Nutz” off their perch? Will Sante lose more money to John Mann? Will Britt-Marie’s cell phone cover blind anyone daring to look straight at it? Let’s see if any of these mysteries will be solved…