Phil Myers and Katie Wagner each entered this year's Marion Brown York City-County Tennis Tournament in search of a second singles championship.
Both succeeded in their quests.
Myers outlasted Kaltrin Bullaj in a three-set duel, 6-0, 5-7, 6-3, to take the Men's Open Singles crown. Wagner, meanwhile, playing on an adjacent court at Wisehaven Tennis Club on Wednesday evening, bested Dagney Markle for the Women's Open Singles title, 7-5, 6-1.
Myers' first title came in 2014, while Wagner, who didn't enter the tournament last year, won in 2015.
After breezing to victory in the first set against Bullaj, Myers found the going much more difficult in the second set, when his opponent responded by taking the set to force a third, and deciding, set.
"In the second set, he served extremely well," Myers said. "Last year, I got too predictable in the final and that ultimately was my downfall in the third set. This year, I was trying to throw a lot of low slices in and keep it (the ball) out of his strike zone. I was trying to keep hitting to his backhand, and I think I did a pretty good job of that in two of the sets."
Myers used a service break to open a 3-0 lead in the third set. Bullaj came within two games twice (at 4-2 and 5-3), but he couldn't draw any closer.
Wagner, meanwhile, fell behind, 2-0, in a hard-fought first set before rallying to take the set. The Susquehannock graduate, and York College rising senior, lost the first game of the second set, but then swept the next six games to earn the title.
"Her (Markle) being a left-hander is something I don't see a lot," Wagner said. "That's a weapon for her. I like to hit my forehand, but she just kept hitting to my backhand."
Markle pushed Wagner in the first set, but the latter was much more consistent than her opponent in the second set.
"I just tried to make her hit one more ball," Wagner said. "In the second set, I tried to hit more forehands and be more consistent with my backhand."
Wagner was happy to be back at Wisehaven this year.
"We had a good spring (tennis) season at York College, and I was ready to keep playing," she said. "This tournament brings everyone together, and it's very competitive in every draw."
This year's City-County event was a success in more ways than one for Myers, who along with competing in the event, is the tournament director.
"This is the best one I've ever played in in terms of (player) turnout and in terms of attendance," he said. "This isn't so much about me winning. I think everyone (players and spectators) won. I think they got what they wanted, and we'll be looking to build on that."
Reach Dick VanO'Linda at firstname.lastname@example.org.