The city of Brotherly Love hosted the APP Tour for a tier 2 weekend tournament. The first time stop in Philly was not on the list for a couple of big players. Gold medal favorites JW Johnson, Zane Navratil, and Anna Bright all missed their chance to run up the Rocky steps in Philadelphia.
Their absence opened the door for some emerging stars on the tour. DJ Young and Mario Barrientos snagged their first gold together in men's doubles. They beat Pablo Tellez and Brendon Long who also left Philly with their first medal as a duo.
Tellez and Long took down the veteran team of Eden Lica and Andrei Daescu in the bronze medal match. The win from Tellez and Long was a change for the dominant Romanian duo that consistently competes for gold.
One of the best matches of the weekend was an international showdown in the winner's bracket final. Young, hailing from Spain and Barrientos from Chile faced off against the Romanian towers Daescu and Lica. The thriller went to extra pickle and ended with a 15-13 final in game three.
Lauren Stratman had a relatively uneventful run to gold. They were the best team on paper and moved through the bracket fairly easily.
Jorja Johnson and Milan Rane finished Saturday in the second spot. They managed to pull one game off of Stratman and David in the gold medal match.
The Rane/Johnson was a viable combination for the MLP Columbus but the plug was pulled on that idea yesterday. Johnson will instead be partnered will Cierra Gayton Leach.
Young and David started their weekend with a win in mixed doubles. They took down the number one seed Andrea Koop and Andrei Daescu via a double dip in the gold medal match.
Young and David lost in the winner's bracket final but could not be touched in the gold medal match. They won three straight games to take the match.
Pablo Tellez and Milan Rane put together a run to snag the bronze. They are both on the rise in doubles get a solid result here in Philly.
Jorja Johnson took charge of the women's division beating Megan Fudge in the WBF and gold medal round. Johnson is leading the APP women's singles standings. The win helps increase her lead heading into two elite series events.
Alix Truong strung together 4 wins in the loser's bracket to win bronze. One of the most impressive wins was a 15-0 victory over Rosie Johanson. Truong is a player to look out for in future events. She is one of the younger players in the division and continues to improve.
With no JW and Zane, Federico was the favorite in the men's division. He met expectations and gets to add another trophy to his expanding pickleball trophy case.
Tellez racked up his third medal of the weekend with a silver in men's singles.He lost to John Cincola in the main draw but got revenge in the bronze medal match. Tellez is made the most of his first weekend as a Selkirk sponsored player.
The APP Tour is heading into two of its biggest events of the year. The APP Chigcao Open is an elite series tournament over Labor Day weekend. The following weekend is another elite series event and a golden ticket qualifier, the APP Atlanta Metro Open open in Griffin, GA.