Juneau recaptures Capital Cup

Home teams are supposed to have the advantage, but that hasn't been the case with the Capital Cup. The Cup tournaments, which pit Whitehorse tennis players against those of Juneau, Alaska, resumed last summer after a seven-year hiatus.

Home teams are supposed to have the advantage, but that hasn’t been the case with the Capital Cup.

The Cup tournaments, which pit Whitehorse tennis players against those of Juneau, Alaska, resumed last summer after a seven-year hiatus.

Since then, the away-team has always brought home the hardware.

“We’re going to go back this winter and try to get it back,” said Tennis Yukon President Stacy Lewis. “Friendships are forming, it’s a lot of fun and a good rivalry. I think we have something fun that we’ll see it for a long time now.”

This weekend, at the Mt. McIntyre courts, Juneau reclaimed the Cup after losing it on home turf in an indoor Cup competition in April. Whitehorse gave up the Cup at home last year, losing 204-173 (in games) and 265-195 this year.

“With counting every game, even if you lose your match you’re still contributing towards your team’s total,” said Lewis. “But the bigger the spread, the faster the other team gets ahead.”

Jan Polivka was a big part of the Whitehorse team, playing in the A Division finals for men’s singles, mixed and men’s doubles.

“All three matches were really good,” said Polivka. “All the (A Division) finals were between Whitehorse and Juneau, which made it more interesting.”

Polivka won the singles with a 6-1, 6-2 win over Juneau’s Vini Lata.

“The first set was quite easy because he had a lot of unforced errors,” said Polivka. “In the second set he played better and the games were close—advantages and deuces—but I won.”

Then, teamed up with his father Lada, Polivka was on the winning side of the men’s doubles, defeating Lata and Steve Hamilton 6-1, 6-4.

“In the doubles it was a little bit tough in the second set because we were leading 5-1 and they started coming back,” said Jan. “They came back to 5-4, but then I held serve.

“My dad is a better doubles player than me.”

In the mixed, Polivka and partner Leighann Chalykoff came up short, losing 6-4, 6-3 against Mona Yarnell and Lata.

“There was no women’s doubles because only one Juneau woman came,” said Lewis. “So we would have used up courts in Whitehorse-versus-Whitehorse matches, with only four courts and lots of matches to get though we didn’t want to use up that time.”

Yarnell went 3-0 in her matches to win the women’s A singles, beating Whitehorse’s Laurie Drummond, Sophia Flather and Beth Ellis.

The women’s B Division was won by Whitehorse’s Shelley Dixon playing against Patti Flather and Sheila Senger, both of Whitehorse. Matches not between Juneau and Whitehorse players were not calculated into the team scores.

Whitehorse also had good success in the men’s B Division, with Nils Clarke winning the singles title and also winning the doubles with partner Keith Halliday.

“Keith and Nils won their matches against Juneau with quite big margins and then they won their doubles with a big margin,” said Lewis. “So that was a helpful division for us. We needed more of those.”

Whitehorse’s Ryan Lane went undefeated in the junior division, defeating Kieran Halliday, also from Whitehorse, in the finals. En route to the win, Lane, who will be representing the Yukon next month at the Canada Summer Games, defeated the lone Juneau junior.

“I want to thank Stacy because she did a great job with the tournament—it was perfectly organized,” said Polivka.

Contact Tom Patrick at tomp@yukon-news.com