Steamboat Springs Several local tennis players will compete for the Intermountain Senior Sectional Championships on the clay today at The Tennis Center at Steamboat Springs.
Jim Swiggart, tennis pro at the center, headlines the group, as he earned a finals spot in both the Men's 50 Singles and the Men's 50 Doubles with partner Theo Mandel from Boulder.
Swiggart, seeded No. 1 in the singles bracket, had little problems with his quarterfinal and semifinal opponents, setting up his 10 a.m. match with Carbondale's Ken Sauer, the No. 2 seed in the tournament today.
On the doubles side, Swiggart and Mandel, seeded No. 1, breezed through their quarterfinals match but met some stiff wind and Denver's Rick Boddicker and Don Hazeldine in the semifinals Saturday afternoon. The two teams split the first two sets before Swiggart and Mandel prevailed 6-3 to win the third set and the match, earning a finals spot today at noon.
Steamboat players Jo Geier and Lou Johnston received a trip to today's finals. With just one other team in their Women's 60 Doubles bracket, little sweat was required, as they got a bye into their 2 p.m. match against Denver's Bonnie Champion and Jody Knudson from Estes Park.
Two men from Steamboat who expected to fare better than the results showed were Men's 55 Doubles team Paul Hughes and Bob Mullen. The two were finalists last year and seeded No. 3 this year. However, Stan Levin and Ken Sauer upset the pair in the quarterfinals 6-3, 6-0. Rocco Laterzo and Tom Sunilla, Steamboat players in the same bracket, also dropped their opening match.
In singles action, several Steamboat players advanced past Thursday's and Friday's opening rounds with a win or a bye. Maurie Pelto upset No. 2 seed Glenn Peterson in the Men's 70 division 6-3, 4-6, 6-2 to advance to the semifinals, where he fell to Gene Wilkins of Fort Collins.
Molly Orr, 55 Women's Singles, received an automatic nod into the semifinals but fell to Louisville's Gayla Lindquist in straight sets, sending her to the consolation round.
In the Men's 65 division, Charles Schultz defeated Tom Rooney of Evergreen 6-1, 6-4 to advance to the semifinals, but Schultz met the top-seeded Ray Skillings from Idaho Falls and fell 5-7, 1-6.
A similar situation befell Dave Schaller, who got past Vernal's Eric Pye in straight sets before falling to Tom Stack of Boulder in the semifinals of the Men's 45 Singles.
In other singles action, Paul Compton received a first-round bye, setting up a match with No. 2 seed Michael Haber of Fort Collins in the Men's 35 bracket. Haber proved his seed was no fluke, defeating Compton 6-1, 6-1.
Fans still interested in catching some tennis action are encouraged to come to today's matches. In addition to Swiggart, numerous local doubles and mixed doubles teams will be on the courts, beginning with Geier and Johnston in the Women's 55 doubles at 11 a.m. They also play in the 60 Doubles final at 2 p.m.
The cost is free. The finalists are playing for the No. 1 seed in the Intermountain Region. The Intermountain Region includes Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, New Mexico, Idaho and Nevada.