Northeast Regional Won by Ben Rothman, and Ben Rothman & Holly Currier
The Northeast Regionals was hosted by the Lenox Croquet Club for the first time ever with a competitive field of 36 players. All players and hosts were especially grateful to have the Regionals back in the Northeast, in a relatively central location. We offered three flights of singles and doubles, with handicaps ranging from –1.5 to 14. With temperature ranges from 75-85 degrees and only a bit of rain a couple evenings, the weather overall was perfect. The tournament was played on four courts at the Lenox Club, established in 1874 as a golf club.
Upon arrival Tuesday afternoon, with courts available for practice and an opening reception with snacks and libations, players got reacquainted and warmed up for early matches on Wednesday morning. Players enjoyed singles and doubles games each day, leading to a single elimination playoff. Lunch was served each day in the main clubhouse and continental breakfast was hosted each morning at the croquet pavilion by various club members.
While the final games of each singles flight were played out simultaneously, most eyes were on the Championship game between Ben Rothman and David Ekstrom. Although many thought the outcome would be a foregone conclusion, Ekstrom gave Rothman a real run for his money, proving that perfection is incredibly elusive in the sport of croquet. Rothman made the first attack on red/yellow buried in the #4 corner. Blue set the break for black, leaving nothing for red to shoot at. Black peeled blue through #2 hoop and continued on through #6 but rolled short unable to make a roquet. Blue/black maneuvered around a bit and then stuffed #3 and #2-back respectively, leaving Rothman partner dead. Now, it was Ekstrom’s turn to pick up some wickets and deadness. Black got a chance to set up but Red knocked it out of position, leaving Rothman 5-ball dead. Red then immediately got stuck in the jaws of #3, giving Rothman a wire for black. Black ended it’s turn in position. The players carried on with a wicket here and there, some spectacularly accurate shots, and difficult hoops for a final score of 14-10 for Rothman.
Everyone was a joy to have in the Berkshires, and the Lenox Croquet Club truly enjoyed hosting the Northeast Regionals, in cooperation with the USCA.Kristine Sprague & John Woodside, T.D.’s