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(Page last updated 7/25/08)

2008 Boy’s District Team Cup 18’s Report

Western Michigan University played host to the 2008 District Team Cup competition. Kalamazoo and Western Michigan is rich in junior tennis tradition as it plays host to the USTA Boys 16’s and 18’s national championships each summer. WMU has recently upgraded their facility and we were able to play all of our matches at one site.

This year’s team had five new faces with only three players returning with experience from last year. The 2008 team members included Billy Bertha, Nick Buckley, Brandon Debot, Sam Ecker, Connor Gilmore, Knute Gundersen, Drew Lied, and Jonathan Schwerin. This year’s team was seeded fourth, and looked forward to the challenge of winning the event.

The team got off to a very strong start on Friday by sweeping Northern Indiana and Northwest Ohio. Every team member contributed on the first day in both singles and doubles without losing a set. Every player competed very well with great attitudes which helped us get through the first two matches quickly. Playing six singles matches and six doubles matches in three days can be very grueling, and conserving energy is important if you want to have a chance to win the cup.

Our second day of competition was equally impressive as we shutout Northern Michigan and defeated a very good NE Ohio team 6-1. We swept the doubles in both matches and only lost one singles match. Nick Buckley dropped a tight three setter to Tommy Marx. I was very impressed with Nick’s fight throughout the match as he saved match points in the second set to force a third set. He competed extremely hard, and represented Wisconsin very well despite his loss. Once again all eight players contributed to the successful day. We knew things would get more challenging in the semi finals vs. the number one seeded Chicago on Sunday.

I really felt we had a very good chance at Chicago if we could pull off the doubles. Billy Bertha and Jonathan Schwerin won a close match at number one doubles, but we were unable to pick up a victory at two or three. Billy picked up a win for us at one singles for our lone point as we lost the match 1-6. We didn’t have much time to regroup as we took the courts an hour later for the third and fourth playoff match vs. the seconded seeded Western Michigan Team. We got off to a strong start by winning the doubles point, and then we got pushed indoors due to weather for the singles portion of the match. Billy Bertha and Drew Lied picked up singles victories for us, and Jonathan Schwerin lost a three setter that would have given us our fourth point needed for the win. We lost 3-4 and ended the tournament in Fourth place.

Billy Bertha and Jonathan Schwerin won all six doubles matches at the number one spot and Billy also won all six of his singles matches at the top as well. This year’s team was very enjoyable to coach and we had a great group of kids. I would like to thank our two seniors, Knute Gundersen and Jonathan Schwerin, and wish them well as they head off to college in the fall.

Steve Rodecap

District Team Cup B18 photo

Junior Cup Teams Undergo Name Changes

The U14 Wightman/Davis Cup Competition will be held in West Lafayette, Indiana this summer at Purdue University. The dates will be June 14-17,2007.

Results – USTA/Midwest Section News Release

2006 Boy’s Junior Davis Cup Report
3rd Place finish overall

Kalamazoo College played host to this years Boy’s Junior Davis Cup. The event was held over three days, and was played at four different sites. Kalamazoo College is rich in tradition as it is the host for the 16 and 18 Boy’s Nationals every summer. Each team was scheduled at the historic Stowe Stadium for at least one match, which was nice for all of the participants.

This year’s team had several new additions, but we had some veterans that were able to play at the top of our lineup to give some of our younger players a chance to gain some experience. The 2006 team members included Brandon Bayliss, Billy Bertha, Matt Clegg, Michael Dierberger, Patrick Dwyer, Josh Graves, Jack Schiro, and Nelson Vick. We arrived in Kalamazoo as the number 4 seed for the second straight year, and looked forward to the challenge of winning the Cup.

The team got off to a very good start by beating a very scrappy Northwest Ohio in the first round by a score of 6-1. Nelson Vick got his JDC career off to a nice start by picking up a win in both singles and doubles. We then played Northern Michigan later that afternoon and picked up our second straight win by a score of 7-0. Both Billy Bertha and Brandon Bayliss played well picking up their first JDC wins. Every player competed intensely which got us off the court relatively quickly. We were able to play all eight of our players on the first day. Conserving energy and players is extremely important in the Junior Davis Cup. We knew things would heat up on the second day of the competition.

First up on the second day was Middle Illinois, and we were victorious once again by a score of 7-0. This was our first chance to play a match at Stowe Stadium, and our guys enjoyed the opportunity. We were able to rest Dierberger which allowed some of the other guys to step up and play higher in the lineup. We faced Seventh Seeded Central Indiana in our fourth match of the event. Central Indiana held out their best two players in their first match of the day against Chicago to gear up for our showdown. I really felt like we played a very clean match against Central Indiana to claim a 7-0 win. It was a total team effort that propelled us into the Semi-Finals.

Chicago was loaded with depth, and on paper, was clearly the best team at the event. We knew that we would have to play really well to have a chance to beat them. We got off to great starts in doubles, but we were unable to close out the doubles point. Josh Graves teamed with Nelson Vick to win at third doubles, and our number two team of Matt Clegg and Billy Bertha had chances in a 9-7 loss. Michael and Patrick also had opportunities at the one spot after being up a break early they were defeated by a very good Chicago team.

We headed into the singles down 0-1, but I feel that our guys came out ready to play. Patrick continued his hot play winning at the number two spot in straight sets. Nelson Vick played a very good match for us at number six singles winning 6-0 in the third set. Josh was in a battle at number two but lost in two very close sets. Billy Bertha also had a lot of opportunities but ended up falling in a hard fought match. Overall, I was pleased with our team’s effort and results against Chicago.

We turned right around to play number three seeded and defending champions Ohio Valley for third and fourth. The match was moved indoors due to inclement weather. Dierberger and Dwyer got off to a great start by playing some of their best doubles. We were able to capture the doubles point with wins at number one and number three. Graves and Vick played another great match to clinch the doubles point for us. Dierberger, Dwyer, and Graves got off the court with straight set wins to capture third place for Wisconsin. Bayliss ended the match with a win at the number six spot making the final score 5-2.

I would like to personally thank our seniors Matt Clegg, Michael Dierberger, Patrick Dwyer, and Jack Schiro on a job well done, and wish them well in their collegiate careers.

Steve Rodecap
WI 18 & Under Jr. Davis Cup Coach

18 & Under Junior Davis Cup Team – Coach Steve Rodecap
Team Members: Michael Dierberger, Patrick Dwyer, Jack Schiro, Matt Clegg, Lado Bakhutashvilli, Max Woods, Kenny Black, Brian Mikkelson
Site: Michigan State University, MI

The team came in 4th place this year, the highest finish in the last 3 years. Had many matches that went to three sets in the semis so the team was quite competitive.

Jr. Davis Cup Team - Coach Steve Rodecap
Finished 2nd in their round robin group
8th overall

The best of the 18 and under boys in the Midwest Section competed at Michigan State University in East Lansing MI June 19-21. Each of the 14 districts sends a team to compete at this annual event. Team selections are made by the WTA Junior Development Committee and the Jr. Davis Cup Coach.

Coach Rodecap reports on the 2004 campaign:
"The trip went well. We were in the red division of the round robin with three other teams. We beat Northern Indiana and Southern Illinois 7-0. We lost to Ohio Valley 0-7. They went on to win the Davis Cup. Finishing second in our group put us in the top playoff group. We then lost to third seeded SE Michigan 2-5. It was a close match that really could have gone either way. Then on Monday we lost to NE Ohio 2-5 and lost a three setter at number one and at number six."

Jr Davis Cup Selections
- Michael Dierberger
- Austin King
- Tim Prudlow
- David Katz
- Patrick Dwyer
- Mark Goldin
- Mark Winston
- Ryan Pederson
- Peter Van Lieshout
- Josh Graves
- Sam Brown
- Andrew Spector
- Lado Bakhutashivili