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APP SoCal Summer Classic 6/19/21 – Live Blog

by JB Jones

APP SoCal Summer Classic Day 2 – Mixed Doubles

Day 2 features 20 Mixed Doubles Teams fighting it out for the top spot. Be on the lookout for favorites like Jay Devilliers -Michelle Esquivel and Rob Nunnery – Vivienne David and underdogs AJ Koller – Lee Whitwell. 

12:11 PDT – JB

Encinitas, CA affectionately known as “The Flower Capital” has some new partnerships budding on the courts. The Winner’s Bracket Quarter Finals are set and there are a couple new partnerships vying for the title. AJ Koller and Lee Whitwell have knocked off Adam Stone and Corrine Carr in a gritty 3 game upset. After winning game two 11-1 they found themselves down 0-8 in game three. Koller and Whitwell went on a massive 11-1 run to comeback and take the match. Joining them in the Quarters are their opponents Callen Dawson and Lea Jansen. The other side of the bracket has Nunnery and David squaring off against yesterday’s Gold Medalist’s Devilliers and Esquivel. Click here to get a recap of yesterday’s doubles action. The Quarter Finals are starting soon, tune into the action here.

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Winner's Bracket Final

The Winner’s Bracket final saw the new duo of Koller and Whitwell take on the tournament favorite of Devilliers and Esquivel. Koeller and Whitwell have had success all day using the full court to their advantage. Whitwell is left handed which allows both players forehands to be in the middle of the court while in the usual mixed doubles stack formation. This opens the door for forehand Ernes on both sides of the court for the team. Koeller has been playing in the middle of the court forcing teams to try to dink to Whitwell and keep balls tight on the deuce court sideline. The margin of error for these shots is slim to none when combined with Whitwell’s ability to jump the corner and Erne any ball not hitting the strike zone. This advantage has paved their way to some easy put aways and a seat in the Gold Medal Round.

Gold Medal Round

Do I even have to say it? Somehow, yet again Devilliers has powered through the back draw to take the Gold Medal. He and Esquivel defeated Nunnery and David 11-1, 12-10 in the Bronze Medal Match to advance to the final. Where they would have a rematch with the Koller – Whitwell duo that was appearing to be in full bloom. Koller and Whitwell took the first game in a similar fashion to the Winner’s Bracket Final. Now with their backs against the wall, Devilliers and Esquivel locked in, and refused to let their opponents reach double digits. They found answers for everything Koller and Whitwell had to offer. Including the deuce side Erne that had been so effective throughout the day. The best of three was won 7-11, 11-8, 11-5. In the final game to 15, Koller and Whitwell again put the pressure on, going up 12-8. Then in a strange sequence of events found themselves in a tied game. A timeout at 12-8-2 led to serve into the net and a side out. Devilliers and Esquivel then snagged 4 quick points by way of two foot faults. After tying the game, the momentum could not be stopped. They powered through a final timeout and secured the final 3 points to take the Gold. Silver is a fantastic finish for Koller and Whitwell but they were so close to Gold that I have to assume it is a little more bitter than sweet.

Day 3 action live on YouTube and follow along with us here, as Devilliers and Esquivel try to secure their individual Triple Crown’s in Men’s and Women’s Singles.

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