Undoubtedly, one of the strongest teams in the Alabama Adult Tennis League Championships is the Mobile Tennis Center based men’s 4.5 team captained by Carl Brutkiewicz, a past president of the Alabama Tennis Association.
On Friday morning at the Copeland-Cox Tennis Center, Team Brutiewicz flexed its muscles, defeating Brimingham-Bragg 4-1. In that match, the locals took two of three doubles matches. In No. 1 doubles, Mike Matheson and Jess Rutledge defeated defeated Bert Carruth and Walter Buckner 6-3, 6-3; while in No. 3 doubles, Jeb Blackerby and Mike Jackson defeated Chung Hsu and Rick Gaynor 6-4, 6-2.
In singles action, No. 1 singles player Mitch Rencher needed three sets, but managed to knock off Brandon Morning 6-3, 6-1, 1-0; while in No. 2 singles, John Zuckley defeated Anthony Black 6-2, 6-1.
Brutkiewicz said that the addition of two college players, Zuckley, a McGill-Toolen Catholic graduate who now plays for Birmingham Southern, and Collin Perry, a UMS-Wright grad who plays for Rhodes College, helped his team tremendously.
“They are the key to the strength in singles play, especially if there are two matches a day where those who are over 35 are cooked after one,” he said. “That’s something we haven’t had in the last 10 years.”
Matheson, a tennis pro at the Country Club of Mobile. and Rutledge, an assistant tennis pro at the Copeland-Cox Tennis Center, are the heart of the doubles teams.
“I think they’re the best doubles team in the tournament,” Brutkiewicz said. “In the last several years, we didn’t have much of a local season, but this year, we had one, which gave all of our doubles teams a chance to jell.”
Several other Mobile area teams had mixed results in the first part of Friday’s action.
In 4.5 women’s play, Mobile-Hutchinson defeated Dothan 5-0 late Thursday and tacked on another win on Friday before losing to Birmingham later Friday afternoon. In 5.0 men’s play, Mobile defeated Huntsville 2-1.
Mobile-Hastie gt off to a 2-0 start in 4-0 men’s play, defeating Montgomery-Crew 5-0 on Thursday afternoon and then beating Birmingham-Wilkes 3-2 Friday morning. Another Mobile 4.0 team, captained by David Smith, was 2-0 after defeating Montgomery-Farmer 3-2.
In 3.0 action, Mobile-Ladd split singles wins with Montgomery, but took two of three doubles matches, while Mobile Hunt bounced back from a loss to Huntsville to defeat Decatur 3-2. In that match, Mobile swept both singles matches, with Lisa Marston defeating Susan Johnson 6-4, 6-1 and Kellie McLeod defeating Adele Slaton 6-0, 6-0.
Actoin continues today at 8 a.m.