Barring a miracle of miracles, equivalent to that of the Detroit Lions being in first place in their division after Thanksgiving… oh wait… equivalent to a billionaire businessman winning the presidency with absolutely zero political experience… oh hang on… equivalent to U of M losing to Ohio State 5 times in a row… ummm too soon?... the Winky Dinks have the first half honors pretty much in the bag.
A 17 point lead over the second place Space Geckos is large enough, but since the Space Geckos have the bye next week, it’s the difference to the third placed Butter Nutz that is more significant. The 24 point buffer should be more than enough to secure top on the ladder.
Most teams put in a fairly decent effort over the past couple of weeks – given the Thanksgiving break – with make-up matches. Not including the Nicker Ballers who had the bye, all but one team picked up at least 30 points since round 7. The outstanding team was Foss Nation, and there is no surprise that they are now in last place. Bonus points also paint an obvious picture. The top 4 teams all have over 80 bonus points for the season so far, only one of the reaming 5 teams have picked up more than 70.
It wasn’t terribly busy last night on the courts, a little surprising as we get closer to the December 11 deadline for completing all the matches. A couple of firsts for round 8: Winning his first match of the season was Rich Stimson (Vivio’s), scraping past Marc Topacio (Foss Nation) 2-1. Also picking up his first win of the season was Paul Van Tol (Winky Dinks) as he took care of Jay Bonahoom (Nick at Night) 2-1; Mike Tusa (Foss Nation) can now breathe more calmly as he avoids the bagel in the win column with a 2-1 victory over Steve Boloven (Vivio’s).
On the other side of the coin, those who picked up their first loss of the season. Only one member can claim that this week: Patrick Hughes (Winky Dinks) suffered a 1-2 defeat at the hands of Michael Craig (Nick at Night) which is nothing to be ashamed of since Michael has also only lost one match so far as well.
So with one round to play, and 10 days to get all the matches in, everyone should be in “squash-mode” and scrambling to get on court. The Winky-Dinks are odds on favorite but they can’t rest on their laurels, and I’m sure captain Justin Winkelman will make sure they don’t. It is vital that you do get as many of your matches in as possible, since the minimum 5 match rule will be invoked and unless you have reached that many, removal from the second half is a high probability. There are still 31 players that are yet to secure their second half spot.