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Mens tennis in the Village finishes strong

Photo of “Rookie of the Year,” John Cranston.

The Village at Castle Pines 55-plus mens tennis team “Rookie of the Year,” John Cranston. Cranston has been playing tennis for three years and is new to the 55-plus league.

Heading into the 2021 season, the mens 55-plus tennis team for The Village at Castle Pines was a bit unsure of what to expect from the season. Longtime team captain, Jerry Eddy (age 82), had stepped down from the role, and Michael Shorts took over as captain of the 13-man team.

Shorts could not speak more highly of the group of people involved with the tennis teams. He began playing tennis five years ago and was pleasantly surprised at just how welcoming the community was. He knew he had to give back to the tennis community, hence his decision to volunteer to take over as captain.

The team played their regular season on Friday mornings at Canyon Club in the USTA Mens Doubles 7.0 League. Each player is given a rating and the combined rating of the two players on the court cannot exceed 7.0, while no player can have a rating below 3.0.

After winning the league after a nine-week season, the first line of the team boasted an unbeaten record for the regular season with five different players taking the court on the first line, which was a large part of the reason the team earned an invite to the district championships at Pinehurst Country Club. The team dropped the first two matches of the district championship but finished their season with a win in their final match. Lon Stuenbinger and Ron West were the number one doubles line in the final match, with Charles Ellison and Pat Conroy on the second line, while Michael Shorts and the team’s Rookie of the Year John Cranston holding down the third line.

While the district championship was open to the entire state, each of the six teams came from the Front Range, with the teams in the tournament coming from Colorado Springs to Fort Collins, with a couple teams based in Denver, one in Longmont, one from Broomfield, and a final team coming in from Greeley.



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