This weekend saw many tough matches and unexpected drama. Newport had many fine guests for the Hickey Cup, locals mixed with tournament tested players from Boston, Washington and Tuxedo as well. Friday evening’s cocktails were paired with the best local cheeses and sparked by unscheduled excitement that will remain indelibly ingrained in the mind’s of all who attended.
A returning visitor, albeit uninvited, was caught in his tracks by an NTC member during a locker room visit Friday evening. The member heard the door handle rattle, and assumed it was a player who had forgotten the ten-key code. The visitor turned out to be the same one enshrined on the club’s bulletin, the Locker Room Bandit! The bandit had been captured by security cameras the day before, when he illegally acquired the wallet and cellphone of members playing on court. Luckily, the aforementioned NTC member had taken proper notice and recognized the Bandit, who was wearing the same outfit as the day before. After denying access to the locker room, the suspected thief’s intended destination, the member observed him leaving the premises, notified the head pro and contacted 911. The dispatcher was asking for a visual and the member provided same. After assuring the club’s safety, the member took it in hand and headed out into the cold of the night, after the perp, and believe it or not, there he was just down the street entering Jimmy’s Saloon! The Bandit was apprehended shortly thereafter by police who arrived from all directions. A happy ending to a sad saga.
Bennett Van Liew was in fresh form in the early hours of the day taking every opportunity given by Rose Escobar to put the ball away. Her volley’s had appeared unstoppable in previous matches, but, Bennett’s superb backhand brought him a shutout 8-0 match victory.
Beth Winthrop had excellent patience returning nearly all tough shots provided by her opponent, Kaveh Nazemoff, in the Hickey Cup finals. With a close first set won by Kaveh 6-5, the second set was even tighter. Many deuces were had, leaving Kaveh without the confidence he should have had with a 5-2 lead. Beth made some excellent decisions keeping herself on the serving end and avoiding Kaveh’s side-cut serves. Finally finding good length, Kaveh managed to create a chase at 5-3 to return him to the serving end. Although losing that game, Kaveh retained the serve and found his previous good length to finish the set and the match 6-4.