Last week, the Farm Neck Country Club, located in Oak Bluffs, Massachusetts, hosted the $5,000 Pro Doubles Challenge which featured top teams from New England and Florida. Matt Browne, former number one player at Lely High School, teamed up with the Merrimac College top dog, Max Eppley of Wesley Chapel, Florida, for this prestigious event on the “Island.”
The new team of Browne and Eppley knocked off the McCue brothers – Andrew competes for Tufts University outside Boston and Brother Tim was a former teammate of Max’s at Merrimac College in Andover, Massachusetts. In the semi-finals, Browne and Eppley toppled the top player on the Island, Mike Hallisky of Vineyard Haven and Martha’s Vineyard High School number one player, Kent Leonard, in a thrilling third set tie break 10-8.
Mike Hallisky originally hails fromClearwater, Florida and is currently the number one 35 & over USTA New England singles ranked player. Matt and Max marched to an early lead but faltered in the second set and the match was soon to be decided by a 10 point Super Tie Break. If not for a double-fault and one huge Matt Browne forehand, the Florida boys may not have prevailed. Matt served at 9-8 and ripped a blistering forehand drive to Hallisky and moved to the net to hit a winning drop-volley angle winner to close out the match!
The top-seeded team of Tye Myers of Naples and Tyler Owens of Ft. Myers were clearly the best duo in the event. Tye Myers(representing Naples) and his USTA 5.0 team is headed to Daytona for the season-ending championships to determine whomoves west in the early fall. Tye Myers works and trains at the Dunes Racquet Club under the direction of John and Lisa Preeg and is one of the best adult players in southwest Florida. Tyler Owens works at Fiddlesticks Country Club in Ft. Myers in the winter but moves north to head the adult tennis program at the Edgartown Yacht Club on Martha’s Vineyard during the summer. Tye and Tyler edged Matt and Max 6-2, 6-4 to win the coveted title. The finalists donated their prize money to charity.
Doug Browne is the Hideaway Beach Tennis Director and the new Collier County USPTA Pro of the Year. Additionally, Doug has been the International Hall of Fame Director of Tennis this past summer. Doug has been writing his tennis column for the past fifteen years and welcomes your feedback.