Update: The women’s 80 final was not played on Thursday, it was an input error. The final is scheduled for Friday.
Today, Thursday, was semifinal day for the national hard courts in La Jolla at the La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club.
First a late update from yesterday: Natalie Herreman Bagby/Alissa Finerman upset the #4 seeds in the 50 doubles, Jennifer Dawson/Jenny Rens Keller in three sets to advance to the semis. And Carol Gay did get past Carolann Castell in the 70 singles, in straight sets. Also, Gay/Sheila Johnson upset #3 seeds Carolann Castell/Peggy Andry in the 70 quarters.
Now onto Thursday results.
Most of the dramatic matches occurred today in the 50s where the viewing section by Court 1 was packed with well over 100 spectators. The two 50s finalist could not have taken more different paths to the final. Ros Nideffer, the top seed and defending champion routed Shelly Works 60 60, though they had some good points. Ros however was aggressive and attacked often and effectively.
Jean Alpert, the third seed, took the long route to the final, completing a fine comeback 06 64 76 over Natalie Herreman Bagby, last year’s finalist and the 2nd seed. Alpert had dropped their only previous meeting last year in the final of the Asics 50 singles, 60 62. Natalie seemed on track to repeat the performance, going ahead 60 2-0 and then 3-1 before Alpert fought back, winning the set 64 to level the match. The third set was a see-saw affair, with Alpert going up 4-1 against a tired opponent. Herreman Bagby fought back, winning several long games to level the set at 4-4 at which time she needed a medical time out for a pulled groin. After having her leg wrapped, she managed to go up 65 and had some match points, but Alpert fought them off and eventually won the tiebreak.
The 50 doubles semis were also quite different. Beverly Bowes-Hackney/Alpert played defending champions Jennifer Lyons/Ellie Hammargren. Bowes pulled her hamstring early on, and though she continued to play, Lyons/Hammargren won 64 61. Meanwhile, Nideffer/Debbie Spence Nasim, the top seeds, took on Finerman/Herreman Bagby. Alissa/Natalie seemed bent on scoring a second upset. Ros/Debbie grabbed the first set in the tiebreak 76; Alissa/Natalie took the second 75. The third set went to the top seeds 63, but the games were tight and the points amazing, particularly the match point. The crowd was roaring after many of the points, it was fantastic tennis.
In the 60s, Susan Wright ended her doubles partner’s bid for a sixth straight crown in La Jolla, despite dropping eight games in the row in the middle of the match. Wright beat Tina Karwasky 62 06 63. Apparently there was a game in the middle of the third set which had about a dozen or more deuces. Susan won it and then coasted to the finish line.
I beat Sherri Bronson 63 63. Sherri played a clever match and I was happy to get past her in straight sets.
Robin Harris and I won our semi over Una Davis/Colleen Ferrell 63 61. Robin played more like someone 6’3” than 5’3” …she can really cover the court! Susan and Tina beat last year’s finalists Andrea Barnes/Leslie Murveit in straight sets.
There were no close matches in the semis of the 70s or 80s and only one upset. Carol Clay beat her hostess for the week, Cathie Anderson 64 60 and Brenda Carter beat Carol Gay 61 64. Carter/Allyson Bolduc, seeded 4th, upset top seeded Ann Hunt/Judy Louie 62 64 and Anderson/Liane Bryson beat Carol Gay/Sheila Johnson 63 63.
Roz King and Dori Devries will reprise the 80s final from the Clay Courts three weeks ago tomorrow. King beat Burnett Herrick and DeVries beat Kathy Langer. Devries/King beat Wasser/Wood 62 61 in the final. Tietz/Matthiessen had to withdraw in the semis due to Matthiessen’s husband having a fall.
The 90s are rolling along with Rita Price leading the way in singles and doubles (with Betty Cookson). Rita and Betty are shown below with Susan Wright. There was a nice barbecue on the beach last night…though the sea gulls were uninvited guests.