If you are wondering why you don’t see Hannah Friend on the tennis courts this time of year you should look at the Sports Section. Hannah was the Times Union Athlete of the week in basketball.
As she talked about her team’s huge road victory Tuesday night, Holy Names sophomore forward Hannah Friend stated opponents should never mistake her skinny frame for a lack of strength.
Facing a difficult task against Watervliet’s senior player Lashana Tolliver, the versatile 6-foot Friend delivered 24 points — including a pair of 3-pointers — to go along with eight rebounds, two steals and two blocks as Holy Names beat the Cannoneers 56-48.
For her efforts, Friend has been named the Times Union‘s Athlete of the Week for the period Dec. 17-22.
So just how good are the girls in our area that made it to the NYSPHSAA State Tennis Tournament (High School states)? It depends on who’s rankings you look at.
Lets start with the singles finalists. Section 2 Champion Shannon Mukerji (Junior) is ranked 36th in New York and 600th Nationally on the Tennis Recruiting web site. Tennis Recruiting ranks players by graduating class (Seniors, Juniors, etc.). The Tennis Recruiting ranking is based on head to head results. If you are beating players who are ranked at a certain level, you will be ranked above them unless you are also losing to players ranked below them. Shannon’s is ranked #68 in the Girls 16’s in the USTA/Eastern Section and #1161 in the country. In the USTA system you get points based on what round you get to, regardless of who you beat to get there but you do need a win. Different levels of tournaments have different point values for wins getting to each round. For example, in the USTA system if you were to play a draw that had only 2 players in it and you won the match, you would get the same number of points as someone who played a tournament with 64 players in it that had to beat, even though they had to win 6 rounds to get the points. There are bonus points for beating top players too. The advantage of the USTA system is that you can actually figure out what your ranking should be. Find your best 6 tournamwnts, add up the points you earned in those tournaments using the points table. In the Tennis Recruiting System, the formula is in the computer. It’s really a black box and sometimes it doesn’t seem to make sense but it does really produce more accurate results. The down side of the Tennis Recruiting System is that it only produces accurate results if it has enough data about players. I have seen where an injured player who starts a match and can’t finish it, who is highly ranked, can really affect the rankings. The player who benefited from the default, withdrawal or retirement can get a big boost in their rankings.
Section 2 Runner Up Claire Schmitz (Junior), a 3 star recruit on Tennis Recruiting, is ranked 17th in New Yorks State and 391st in the nation – she has been a high as 295th. Her USTA national ranking is #462, while her Eastern Sectional ranking is #49. Third place finisher Chassidy King is ranked #141 in the Section. She does not have enough results in the system to have a Tennis Recruiting ranking.
The doubles team players – Keishorea Armstrong, Mitali Das, Kailin Baechle, Samantha Blond do not have enough results for a Tennis Recruiting ranking. Nisha Detchprohm (Freshman) is ranked 537 National in her grade and 28 in New York State. Nisha is 157th in the Girls 16’s Sectionally, Samantha is 358th, but Nisha is actually still in the Girls 14’s where she is ranked 60th in the Eastern Section.
In order to help sort things out, I hope to do an article in the near future about what some of the coaches look at, USTA Rankings both Sectionally and Nationally Vs. Tennis Recruiting Rankings. Check back soon to see.
Click the link above to watch a video on No Cut Tennis with Dave Steinbach.
“David Steinbach and Bill Wagstaff are perfect examples of the essence of a No-Cut coach and the USTA is proud to honor them,” said Kirk Anderson, Director of Recreational Coaches and Programs, USTA. “As accomplished and experienced coaches, these two men have made a positive impact on their schools, as well as on the sport of tennis.”
Steinbach has been coaching tennis for 29 years. This season, his Brookfield High School team consisted of 107 girls and 97 boys. Throughout Steinbach’s coaching career, he has won more than 400 dual matches with his girls’ team and 390 dual matches with his boys’ team, and has coached both of his teams to 13 state titles and 13 runner-up finishes in Wisconsin.
Register as a No-Cut Coach Today!
If you are already part of the registry, refer another coach to sign up and you will be entered into a drawing to receive a USTA thank you gift.
Students, Coaches and Schools benefit from No-Cut Teams:
- A no-cut policy sends a message that developing kids is important to the coach and the school.
- Schools gain more support from parents and the community by offering everyone a chance to participate – regardless of ability.
- A positive experience on a no-cut team will encourage students continue to participate in this lifetime sport beyond high school.
- “Tennis players score higher in vigor, optimism, and self-esteem, and lower indepression, anger, confusion, anxiety and tension than other athletes and non-athletes”, according to Dr. Joan Finn, Southern Connecticut State University.
- Veteran No-Cut Coaches also typically have higher winning percentages because they have a larger player pool.
Fourth seeded Keishorea Armstrong and Mitali Das of Emma Willard continued their winning ways today at Tri City with a 7-6 (2), 6-4 win over 5th seed Brittany Burke and Morgan Hermann of Garden City but then lost to the top seeded Cassidy and Jessica Cruz of New Rochelle by a score of 6-1, 6-1. Meanwhile, their Emma Willard teammates Kailin Baechle and Samantha Blond won their Consolation Round match againt Samantha Heyn and Marissa Joyce of West Genesse 8-2. They followed that up with a semi final win over Meredith Braiman and Elena Delucia of Horseheads. On to the Consolation Round Finals where they took out Sarah Han and Dani Silber of Half Hollow Hills West by a score of 8-2.
In the Singles Consolation Round Claire Schmitz, also from Emma Willard, beat Sienna Susko of Fayetteville-Manlius 8-4 but lost to Kahlei Resinger of Baldwinsville 8-4 ion the semi finals.
Congratulations to all of the players who made it to states
Although Section 2 – our section of the New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) did not have any players seeded in the Singles Draw this year we did get a seeded team in the Doubles Draw. Keishorea Armstrong and Mitali Das of Emma Willard were seeded 4th and have so far lived up to their seeding. In the first round of NYSPHSAA States, held at Tri City in Latham, Keishorea and Mitali beat Jennifer Amend and Madison Salmon of Union Endicott 6-1, 6-0 and in the second round they beat Nikki Ledger and Shayleen Brennan of Orchard Park 6-3, 6-0. Tomorrow they play 5th seeded Brittany Burke and Morgan Hermann of Garden City. Kailin Baechle and Samantha Blond, the other Emma Willard doubles team representing our section lost in the first round to Ekim Buyuk and Diana King of Ryeneck 7-5, 6-0. Buyuk and King were the 6th seeds. Baechle and Blond won their Consolation Round Match over Victoria Vanevery and Elizabeth Rowan 8-3. Their next opponent is Sarah Han and Dani Silber of Half Hollow Hills West. The other Section 2 doubles team of Alyssa Frost and Nisha Detchprohm (Niskayuna) beat Meredith Braiman and Elena Deluccia of Horseheads 6-3, 6-3 in the first round but lost to 2nd seeded Alexa Goldberg and and Tomo Iwasaki of Edgemont 6-3, 6-3. There is no Consolation Round for 2nd round losers, only for first round losers, so Frost and Detchprohm are done.
In the Singles Draw Section 2 Champion Shannon Mukerji (Shaker) played Alana Danieu of East Aurora and won 6-4, 6-2. Then Shannon had to play 3rd seed Claire Minnoe and lost 7-6 (4), 6-4. Sectional runner up Claire Schmitz – another Emma Willard player – had to play 4th seeded Nicole Torres in the first round. Claire lost 6-1, 6-3. In the Consolation Round Claire played Rachel Mole of Frewsburg and won 8-4. Her next opponent will be Sienna Susko of Fayetteville-Manlius. The last Section 2 player and the last Emma Willard player – Chassidy King – had a 6-4, 6-1 victory in the first round over the Catholic School League Champion Courtney King but lost to 2nd seeded Vivian Cheng 6-1, 6-1 in the 2nd round.
The remaining Section 2 players – coincidentally all from Emma Willard – will be back in action tomorrow at Tri City. We hope to have updated results for Armstrong/Das and Baechle/Blond in the doubles and for Schmitz in the singles by this time tomorrow.
Beginning tomorrow (Saturday) at 9:00, the best girls high school tennis players in the state will be competing at Tri City Fitness in Latham. The Girls High School tournament will be at Tri City for the first time. The opportunity came about because the long time home of the state tournament – East Side in Manlius was sold to the local YMCA. East Side, which was originally Limestone, had 6 tennis courts, but the YMCA has converted some of the courts into other facilities so that now there are only 3 courts. The tournament was hard to finish when there were 6 courts, on 3 courts it is impossible.
Even if East Side had not been sold, Tri City remains a great choice. First of all it is close to the New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) office. Their office at 6 Airport Park Drive in Latham is less than 5 miles away. Also, there are 6 hotels, less than a mile from the club and over 15 hotels within 5 miles. The closest hotel to East Side was 3 miles away and only 3 hotels are less than 5 miles away. Then there is the facility – 12 courts instead of 6 courts, courtside viewing in the dome and a newer, better lit club, plus Latham is much more centrally located.
It comes as no surprise that Tri City would host the State Championships. They have been hosting USTA National Tournaments there for 11 years as well as hosting many other junior and adult tournaments throughout the year. It makes sense to have an event of this caliber at a club that regularly hosts high level tournaments. Many of these kids are already familiar with the club, having played tournaments here themselves. All in all, a good choice by NYSPHSAA to host the tournament here. Hopefully, this will be a permanent home for Girls High School States.
Claire Schmitz (Emma Willard) 2 vs. Shannon Mukerji (Shaker) 3
Chassidy King (Emma Willard) vs. Nicole Kellogg (Burnt Hills – King won the first set 6-4
Keishorea Armstrong/Mitali Das (Emma Willard) 4, Kaelin Baechie/Samantha Blond (Emma Willard) 3
Nadia Suguitan/Kaitlyn Healy (Shenendehowa) 4 Alyssa Frost/Nisha Detchprohm (Niskayuna) 5
(3:27 pm) Sportime at Schenectady
Claire Schmitz (Emma Willard) vs. Shannon Mukerji (Shaker) – Mukerji won the first set 6-3 and leads 1-0 in the second,
Chassidy King (Emma Willard) vs. Nicole Kellogg (Burnt Hills – King won the first set 6-4 and leads 2-1 in the second
Keishorea Armstrong/Mitali Das (Emma Willard) vs. Kaelin Baechie/Samantha Blond (Emma Willard) Armstrong/Das won the first set 6-3 and trail in the second 2-1
Nadia Suguitan/Kaitlyn Healy (Shenendehowa) Alyssa Frost/Nisha Detchprohm (Niskayuna) Frost/Detchprohm won the first set 6-3 and are leading the second set 5-0
Alyssa Frost/Nisha Detchprohm (Niskayuna) defeated Nadia Suguitan/Kaitlyn Healy (Shenendehowa) 6-3, 6-1
(3:47 pm) Sportime at Schenectady
Chassidy King (Emma Willard) defeated Nicole Kellogg (Burnt Hills) 6-4, 6-3
(3:58 pm) Sportime at Schenectady
Keishorea Armstrong/Mitali Das (Emma Willard) defeated Kaelin Baechie/Samantha Blond (Emma Willard) 6-4, 6-3
(4:19 pm) Sportime at Schenectady
Shannon Mukerji (Shaker) defeated Claire Schmitz (Emma Willard) 6-3, 7-5
Girls High School Sectional Semi Finals were not played today due to the weather. They may be played tomorrow or Wednesday, depending on Hurricane Sandy. If they are played on Wednesday they may play a double header. I will post information as it becomes available to me.
Here are some scenes from the 14 and Under Advanced Junior Team Tennis National Championships in Columbia, South Carolina this past weekend. Our area and the Eastern Section was represented by the Soups. The players are Joaquin Rossen, Jason Tang, Christina Lau, Lesley Santos, Nisha Detchprohm and Michael Zhu.
Calire Schmitz (Emma Willard) def. Fallon Etkin (Shenedehowa) 6-0, 6-1
Chassidy King (Emma Willard) def. Jamie Rosen (Bethlehem) 6-0, 6-0
Shannon Mukerji (Shaker) def. Hannah Friend (Holy Names) 6-0, 6-0
Nicole Kellogg (Burnt Hills) def. Ann Phillips (Niskayuna) 6-2, 6-0
Kieshorea Armstrong/Mitali Das (Emma Willard) def. Mia Fillati/Stephanie Behrens (Shaker) 7-5, 6-1
Nadia Suguitan/Kaitlyn Healy (Shenedehowa) def. Alisa White/Lauren Nardacci (Bethlehem) 6-2, 6-0
Alyssa Frost/Nisha Detchprohm (Niskayuna) def. Anna Steciuk/Lauren Demetreus (Ba;llston Spa) 7-6 (2), 6-1
Samantha Blond/Kailin Baechie (Emm Willard) def. Aria Shi/Elizabeth Buckley (Bethlehem) 6-7 (8), 6-0, 6-1
DOUBLES CLICK PICTURE TO ENLARGE IMAGE
Today’s High School Sectionals were postponed due to the threat of rain. The hopes are to run the event indoors at Sportime tomorrow at 2:00 but those plans have not yet been finalized. We will have an update if we find out more.
Bethlehem def Columbia 9-0
(BC) Emily Heller 10-5
(BC) Emma DeFrancesco 10-0
(BC) Meghan Wendth 10-1
(BC) Mallory Schultz 10-2
(BC) Rachel Britton 10-2
(BC) Madeline Dering 10-2
(BC) Iris Zhou/Grace DiRisio 10-0
(BC) Linda Li/Mallory Epstein 10-2
(BC) Madeline Carswell/Lauren Abbuhl 10-3
Bethlehem finishes the season 14-1 with the best record in suburban council.