Phil Myers' performance wasn't perfect, but it was close enough to defeat 17-time champion Jim Kohr in the championship match of the York-City County Tennis Tournament's Men's Singles final.
Myers earned his second-straight, and third overall, singles crown with a 7-5, 6-0 victory over Kohr on Saturday evening at Wisehaven Tennis Center.
"He played great," Kohr said. "I didn't play as bad as the score indicates, but that's the way it goes. I just thought he would cool off after that first set, but he never cooled off."
Myers came up short in two previous City-County matches against Kohr, but the York High and York College graduate wasn't to be denied a third time.
"In 2011, I lost to him one and one (6-1, 6-1)," Myers said. "In 2016, I lost 7-5 in the third set. Every time, you play someone, you learn something about the other player and something about yourself. Those two losses were great lessons."
Myers wanted to extend points: The 29-year-old Myers felt it was important to extend the points against the 50-year-old Kohr.
"He wanted to make the points as short as possible, and I wanted to make them as long as possible," Myers said. "Jim hit some stellar returns, but I was able to get out and turn the points around."
Myers found himself down, 5-4, in a back-and-forth first set before rallying to win the last three games.
Kohr served to start the second set and built a 40-love lead, but Myers refused to let his opponent win the game. He won three straight points (two on forehand winners) to get to deuce. There were three more deuces before Myers won the game.
Riding the momentum he gained from taking the opening game, Myers closed out the match by capturing the next five games.
"Best he could play:" Myers hit winners off the forehand and backhand, some of which caught a line, and made a number of winning service returns.
"He returned (serves) really well," Kohr said. "I thought my slice would hurt him, but it didn't hurt him at all."
Myers said Saturday's performance was "the best he could play."
"He definitely brought me to my highest level," Myers said. "Two years ago, he pushed me to bring out everything I had, and it wasn't enough. Tonight, he pushed me to do the same thing again, and tonight, it was enough."
In a rare statistic from the title match, neither Myers nor Kohr committed a single double fault.
Tournament likely to move playing dates: Myers, the director of tennis at Wisehaven, is also the director of the City-County Tournament.
He said it's almost certain that next year's tournament will take place in a different part of the summer.
The 2019 event will likely start on Aug. 7 and conclude on Aug. 14. It will take place over just one weekend instead of the two weekends it was played on this year.
Myers is hoping the change will change will draw more players, particularly in the Women's Open Singles bracket, which had just three players in the 2018 edition of the event.
Reach Dick VanO'Linda at firstname.lastname@example.org.