CLICK HERE FOR STATE FINALS DRAWS
Many of you are new to the whole State Finals experience, so here's a summary of what the Trip is going to look like:
Thursday, May 31
10am - Players are dismissed from school to the Athletic Office. The Athletic Staff will give the girls a brief send-off. It's common for a couple parents to come to the send-off, but it's no big deal either way. We will get subway on the way to Midland.
1:30ish PM - Arrive at Midland Community Tennis Center for a brief hit.
3:00ish PM - Arrive at the Midland Holiday Inn. (School will cover the girls room cost for the trip)
Dinner - Around dinner time we will go to the mall, hang out, and eat dinner at Ruby Tuesdays. (School will cover this dinner as well).
Evening - We'll have a brief meeting in one of the hotel rooms to get pumped up for the morning, then head to bed.
Friday, June 1
7:00am Warmup at Midland Community Tennis Center
8:00am Player meeting
8:30am Play begins
At this point we will play for as long as there are girls still in the event! The State Finals is a 4 or 5 round tournament, depending on whether or not your first round is a bye. If any flight makes it to the Semi-Finals, then we all stay another night and finish on Saturday. This is my 10th trip to the State Finals with West Ottawa. There have been 2 times where our teams have made it to Saturday. If any of our girls make it to the finals, the match will have a chair umpire like you see on TV!
- If we are out on Friday, we will get home very late on Friday...maybe midnightish, but it's impossible to say?
- If we make it to Saturday, then we will get home in the afternoon or early evening.
Regarding our chances, I've found teams at the State Finals can generally be put into three groups:
Group 1 - Teams can viably win the State Title each year (4-5 schools). These teams get seeds at nearly every flight.
Group 2 - Teams that everyone expects to be at the State Finals each year (7-8 schools). These teams try to get a top ten finish. Occasionally they will earn a seed or two, but they are capable of beating seeded teams either way.
Group 3 - Teams that qualified out of a weak region, or teams that don't typically make it to States, but had an unusually good year (3-4 varying schools each year).
West Ottawa is a part of Group 2. The strong programs on the East side of the State respect us and expect to see us at the tournament each year. They would prefer not draw us in the first round, because they've seen us beat them in the past.
The Draw for the tournament will be published on the MHSAA website. When it's out, I'll try to attach it to the blog. Just don't get too obsessed with the draw. WHO we play isn't nearly as important as HOW we play.
Hopefully this clarifies a few things. Write a comment if you have a question, because I bet others have the same question.