The final day of action at the Post-Journal Classic tennis tournament featured plenty of excitement for local tennis fans on Sunday.
The championship round was highlighted by a contentious final match for the Women's Open Singles title, which was narrowly won by Heidi Mueller over Southwestern Central School teammate Morgan Johnson, 4-6, 7-6 (3), 10-7, in a tiebreaker.
There may have been five matches going on at the same time on Sunday, but Mueller versus Johnson caught everyone's attention. A break of serve by Johnson in the first set looked like it could be decisive early on, but Mueller's resiliency paid off in the final points.
Above, Heidi Mueller makes a backhand return to Morgan Johnson en route to winning the Women’s Open Singles title at The Post-Journal Classic on Sunday. Below, Erik Olson serves in the Men’s A Doubles final. See additional photos at cu.post-journal.com.
P-J photos by Jay Young
The second set featured several extensive 20-shot rallies as Mueller tried desperately to stave off a loss. It looked like Johnson would have a chance to finish the game after Mueller was unable to serve out the set at 5-4, but she ended up pushing the match to a final tiebreak.
One final backhand down the line was enough for the victory 10-7 in the breaker.
"These girls faced off in the county tournament this year," recalled YMCA tennis director Paul Young. "If they played 100 matches it might go 50-50, they both play well and today was no exception."
The respect between Mueller and Johnson was palpable following the match, which is not surprising considering they competed together as a doubles team in this year's Post-Journal Classic.
Due to travel considerations and scheduling the Men's Open Division championship was played on Saturday evening and won handily by Travis Beck, who shut out James Getty 6-0, 6-0.
After winning the open title Beck was back in action on Sunday when he and partner Kyle Hosier faced off against the team of Mark Szafnicki-Derrick Acker in the Men's Open Doubles final. In the end the high octane serving from Szafnicki-Acker proved too much for Beck and Hosier, who fell, 6-2, 6-1, in their final match.
The doubles field was blown wide open on Saturday when veteran teammates Jeff Bartsch and Bob Olson were upset by Matt Johnson and Quinn White, 10-8, in a third-set breaker. That loss opened the door for Szafnicki-Acker, who were dominant on Sunday.
The Men's A Division Doubles final featured a more-closely played match between the team of Bryce and Jack Payne and Aaron Saxton-Erik Olson. The match showcased strong volleying from both sides of the net and ended narrowly, 6-2, 4-6,13-11, in favor of Payne-Payne.
Bryce Payne also took home a victory in the Men's A Singles Division, ousting Ben Wright of Olean, 6-7 (5), 6-0, 10-5, for the championship.
The Women's Open Doubles title was also decided on Sunday morning. Fellow Lady Trojans Elizabeth Rowan and Victoria VanEvery were taken down by Annie Baich and Teru Greene of Mercyhurst College, 6-1, 6-1.
"We had a good turnout this year," Young said. "I think we can improve the depth of the men's Open Division in the coming years by adding more guys from around the region, but we do have plenty of players in the younger groups."
Following are all of Sunday's results:
Men's A Singles
Bryce Payne d. Ben Wright 6-7 (5), 6-0, 10-5
Women's Open Singles
Heidi Mueller d. Morgan Johnson 4-6, 7-6 (3), 10-7
Men's Open Doubles
Mark Szafnicki-derrick Acker d. Travis Beck-Kyle Hosier 6-2, 6-1
Men's A Doubles
Bryce Payne-Jack Payne d. Aaron Saxton-Erik Olson 6-2, 4-6, 13-11
Women's Open Doubles
Annie Baich-Teru Greene d. Elizabeth Rowan-Victoria VanEvery 6-1, 6-1
Boys 5 And Under Singles
Ryan Whisner d Jacob Labonte 6-3, 6-0
Girls A Singles
1. Mikayla Johnson 32 games
2. Bernadette Gens 16
3.. Meredith Franzen 13
4. Madison Collins 11
5. Katherine Schultze 8
Girls B Singles
Tara Thomas d Nicole Cosico 10-1
Junior C Singles
Elizabeth Kane d Colton Oljeski 8-6
Mixed A Doubles
1. Geoffrey Broadbent-Mallory Bliss 22 games
2. Jarrett Reed-Brooke Sheesley - 17
3.. Noah Colvin-Kim Parroccini - 16
4. Joe Gerace-Andrea Cuevas - 5
1. Hannah Franklin-Elizabeth Becker 26 games
2. Madison Collins-Katherine Schultze - 23
3.. Spencer Kane-Eston Shedd - 18
4. Riley-Andrew Auer - 12
5. Emma Collins-Jenna Hayes - 1
Mixed Open Doubles
1. Annie Baich-Travis Beck - 31
2. Miguel Lopez-Teru Greene 27
3.. Matt-Mikayla Johnson - 21
4. Cooper Miller-Chloe Knapp - 20
5. Quinn White-Heidi Mueller - 19
6t. Kyle Hosier-Annette Miller - 17
7. Wyatt Jackson-Victoria VanEvery - 13
8. Bob Olson-Rosemary Kutschke -12
9. Jack Payne-Rosemarie Mole' - 11
10. Ryan Whisner-Morgan Johnson - 10
Pickleball Open Doubles
1. Dan Ferretti-Kyle Thomas
2. Matt Johnson-Bob Goold
3.. Scott Lewellen-Amy Watson
4. Cooper Miller-Heidi Mueller
5. Paul Young-Mikayla Johnson
Pickleball A Doubles
1. Scott-Helen Sawyer
2. Jeff-Tara Thomas
3.. Andrea Cuevas-Dixie Siegel
4. Tom Dorey-Joe Gerace