By Mitch Falkin, Men’s League Vice President
Remember the City Finals days where lines 1 and 2 played first, then lines 3 and 4 played, and then line 5 played, and the City Championship came down to one match and everyone on both teams were watching, cheering, feasting, and enjoying the camaraderie of City Finals? Well…those days are BACK!
COVID impacted so much of our lives, and for ALTA, it changed the way we ran City Finals. To minimize crowds at the venues and to keep the City Finals time duration to a minimum, we instituted the “All 5 Lines Start at the Same Time” procedure, whereby each level had two different starting times (9:00 a.m. for some, 11:30 a.m. for others), and all five lines on each team played at the same time. I must admit, it did accomplish the goals: everyone knew they would start at a certain time, they would play at the same time, and be off the court within 2-1/2 hours. It also made sure that lines 4 and 5 started their matches even if one team swept lines 1, 2, and 3, so that was another benefit. But lost in this “compressed” method was a lot of the fun experienced when City Finals was more of a festive, full-morning occasion and not a specified, 2.5-hour event. I say, “Can’t wait; bring it on!”
We are continuing to work on everyone’s favorite subject — travel times — trying to minimize the number of away matches that require long drives. We also continue to tweak and upgrade the ALTA computer system so that the Lineup Checker becomes your “go-to” team management software. The main benefit to using the ALTA Lineup Checker for each match is that since it is based on the lineups that were actually played in previous weeks (NOT the lineup that was planned, but changed at the last minute), movement violations and defaults are definitely reduced.
Registration for the fall Men’s season starts Thursday, June 30, and the roster registration deadline is Thursday, July 21. Captains, please make sure everyone is signed up and ready to play. Players, make sure you have found a team so you can compete. Play begins on Saturday, September 10 and the regular season ends on Saturday, October 22. Playoffs and City Finals run through Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. Weather is always fantastic for the fall season. We look forward to another great ALTA Men’s League season!