Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Lee County Men's Leagues Report

About half way through the Men's season most of the divisions are characterized by a few true contenders at the top, followed by the rank and file. Standings are as of 1/31/12.

Lee County 50-Plus 
Red A
After splitting its first match, Dunes (TD) has been dominant over the past six, sweeping four matches and losing one court in each of the other two. Its closest competitor, Park Meadow (MW), trails by seven points and has held its own, except against the other two teams in the top three.

Lighthouse Bay (RM), which sits in third with 15 points, took three of four courts from Park Meadow, and the Dunes swept Park Meadow in their most recent match. Lighthouse Bay has battled evenly with every team except Dunes, which swept them last time they played.

Red B
In Red B it appears to be Heritage Palms (LH), then everyone else. With three sweeps and a 23-5 individual match record, Heritage has posted an eight-point lead over its nearest competition, Pelican Landing (CL) and Plantation, which are tied with 15 points each.  Plantation (3-1) downed Pelican Landing convincingly the first time around, but Pelican gave Heritage Palms (2-2) a tussle in their first meeting. It’ll be interesting to see if anyone emerges to challenge Heritage down the stretch.

Red C
Another neck-and-neck battle exists in Red C, as Fort Myers (EM), Lexington (TM), and Colonial (RB), hold the top three positions with 20, 19, and 18 points respectively. Fort Myers took three of four against Lexington in its last match, and did the same against Colonial in the first match of the season. Colonial and Lexington split their previous meeting in Week 5. Given the closeness of this division after seven matches, it appears that it will go right down to the last couple of weeks to decide the Champion.

Red D
Red D is just as tight at the top as Red C, with the same one-point spread amongst Forest (CG), Fort Myers (BT), and Park Meadow (YD): 20, 19, and 18 respectively. Forest has been a model of consistency winning three of four courts in six of its seven matches. Fort Myers, on the other hand, has hit for the cycle, with two sweeps, two 3-1 wins, two ties, and one 1-3 loss.

The good news for Fort Myers is that they are responsible for the one split on the Forest’s card, after losing 1-3 to them the first time around. Park Meadow has done well against the other teams in the Division, but lost 1-3 to the top two teams. With half the season to go, it’s still anybody’s ball game amongst the top three, but unless Park Meadow solves the riddle, it appears to be a battle between Forest and Fort Myers.

White A
Despite one fewer match played than Gulf Harbour (ED) and Fort Myers (WT), Breckenridge (MN) maintains a two-point division-lead over the former and a five-point lead over the latter. Kelly Greens (JJ) is just one point back of Fort Myers, and won three of four courts against Fort Myers in their only meeting.  

Breckenridge downed Gulf Harbour 3-1 in their first meeting, but split with Fort Myers in their last match.  Gulf Harbour took a 3-1 victory over Fort Myers when they played.  Essentially, this is another race that is likely to go to the wire, with any of the four above teams a likely winner.

White B
Parity atop the divisions seems to be the theme through the seventh week, and White B is no exception. Grandezza (RK) and Pelican Landing (SL) are tied after eight matches at 22 points each. Pelican Preserve (TC) and Shadow Wood (TR) are close behind with 19 and 18 points respectively, and the others are pretty much “others.”

Grandezza started the season slowly with two 1-3 losses, but hasn’t lost more than one court in their six matches since, including two sweeps. Pelican Landing (SL) doesn’t sweep much (just once thus far), but they don’t lose either. Pelican has split three times and won the other five, including a 3-1 victory over Grandezza in Week 2.

Pelican Preserve started well, including a 3-1 victory of the Division Leader, but has dropped three of its last four matches, and two of its last three matches to the top two teams. Shadow Wood is hard to peg, sweeping its first two matches, splitting the next two, then alternating splits and 1-3-losses the final four. The consistency showed by Grandezza and Pelican Landing (SL) suggests that the league winner is likely to come from one of these two.

White C
Colonial (AG), with 23 points has yet to lose in its first seven matches, sweeping three times and losing one court in three others. Second-place Dunes, with 19 points, has one loss (1-3), which came against Colonial in their only meeting thus far this season. All four courts were close, so it could go the other way when Colonial visits the Dunes.

Not out of reach in third is Vines (JW) with 17 points. However, Vines’ only two losses have been to Colonial (0-4) and Dunes (1-3), and it has played one fewer match than the top two teams.  

White D
Lexington (TM) and Sanibel Harbor (EH) lead the way with 21 and 16 points respectively. Heritage Cove is two points back with 14, and Cape Coral is next with 13 points.

The big difference between the top two is Lexington’s three sweeps, and Sanibel Harbor’s hiccup against Cape Coral, when it was swept. In head-to-head, Sanibel Harbor took three from Lexington, yet Lexington swept Cape Coral. Go figure!  This one bears watching down the stretch.  

Blue A
After eight matches Blue A is shaping up as a three-horse race, with Forest (RS) and Pelican Landing (HM) running neck and neck with 25 points each. It’s not looking so good for Forest (RS), because they were swept by Pelican Landing (HM) the last time out, and split the four matches the first time they played.  A half length behind the leaders is Pelican Preserve (KG) with 20 points. No other team is within shouting distance of the leaders.

Blue B
Five of the eight Blue B teams are still in the hunt for the top spot in the Division. Kelly Greens (JS) has broken away from the pack with 25 points, Pelican Landing (RC) follows with 20 points, Lexington (GB) and Colonial (TC) are sticking close with 19 each, and Legends (AD) rounds out the top five with 17 points.

Kelly Greens has won or split every match, sweeping three times, and losing one individual match three other times, so it is in the driver’s seat with half the season to go.

Blue C
In one of the most competitive divisions, Blue C, Heritage Palms (BD) and Landings (BS) are tied in point total (20 each), but Landings (BS) has played one match fewer than Heritage. The next two teams in line, Dunes (JG) and Seven Lakes (CB) are also tied with 16 points apiece. Following those two are Shadow Wood (RB) and Cross Creek Paseo (RE) tied with 15.

Although Pelican Preserve (RT) is not too far behind those in contention with 13 points, the only team they have beaten thus far is Kelly Greens (BM), which is bringing up the rear with 9 points. I suspect Heritage Palms and Landings to context the Division Championship to the wire.

Blue D
Plantation (TS) and Dunes (BR) are tied at the top of the Blue D Division with 24 points each, and Heritage Palms (JR) is within striking distance three points behind. Although the Dunes has posted five sweeps in the eight matches played (more than any other team), and split two of the other three, it was being swept by Plantation in the other match that enabled the tie.

Who knows where Heritage would be had it not been swept by the Dunes in Week 5.  But this appears to be an “any given day” division because Lexington, which sits in 6th, took three of four matches against Plantation in its last match. Things are too close and unpredictable to make a call in this division.

Lee County 70-Plus
 Red Division
As in the most of the Men’s 50-Plus divisions, it’s tight at the top in the 70-Plus Red A, then there’s a significant drop off.  Plantation, Fort Myers, and Landings stand 1, 2, and 3 with 22, 21, and 20 points respectively. The fourth-place team is nine points behind third.

Plantation’s only loss came in its first match against Landings when they dropped three courts. Fort Myers has split twice and its only loss is to Plantation, when it lost three courts. Landings has yet to lose, but it has split three times. Plantation’s 21-3 record over the past six matches suggests they’ll be tough to beat.

White Division
Lexington is undefeated in six matches played, and leads the Division with 18 points. Fort Myers Racquet Club (FMRC) is two points back and has lost just once in six outings. The bad news for FMRC that 1-3-loss came against Lexington. The good news is that the three losses were third-set super-tiebreaks, and the one win was a straight-setter. These two are likely to be battling for the top spot all the way through the season.

Blue Division
Gulf Harbour is undefeated and holds a three-point lead over Legends through six matches. Gulf Harbour’s was tested against Legends, despite a 3-1 victory, as two of their three wins were in super-tiebreaks. They also split with The Forest, which sits in third with 13 points. Lexington is not far behind with 12 points, and has won seven of eight courts in its last two matches. Barring injuries, it looks like a contest between the top three.

Green Division
Sanibel Harbour leads the way with 22 points, followed by Breckenridge with 16, Colonial with 15, Cross Creek with 14, and Legends with 13. However, Colonial and Cross Creek have played six matches to the others’ seven.   

In head-to-head matchups, Sanibel has beaten three of the four, and split with Colonial, so despite the one-match deficit, Sanibel appears to be the cream of the crop. Look for Colonial to and Cross Creek to hang in the fight though.

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