Waters Triples, Johns Doubles - PPA Peachtree Classic Championship Sunday Recap
Men’s doubles: 🥇Ben Johns & Collin Johns 🥈Riley Newman & Matt Wright
Women’s doubles: 🥇Anna Leigh Waters & Leigh Waters 🥈Jessie Irvine & Anna Bright
Mixed doubles: 🥇Anna Leigh Waters & Ben Johns 🥈Catherine Parenteau & Riley Newman
Men’s singles: 🥇JW Johnson 🥈Julian Arnold
Women’s singles: 🥇Anna Leigh Waters 🥈Callie Smith
Anna Leigh Waters
70 percent of the Earth is covered by water, and the other 30%...Waters. Anna Leigh Waters came out at the PPA Peachtree Classic in Georgia on Sunday and showed the pickleball world that she reigns supreme, earning her fourth triple crown of the year!
Waters got her day started with a tough win over Callie Smith in singles, with the match going four games. Smith beat the first game, with deep serves, returns and keeping the 15-year-old from crashing the net. In the next two games, Waters barely came out on top, doing so by three points and two points. Then, she seized the momentum and energy in the fourth game and rolled to victory, 11-1.
After getting a one-match rest while men’s doubles was being played, Waters stormed back onto the court with her mom, Leigh Waters, to defeat Jessie Irvine and Anna Bright in five games. This match went the longest on the day and with great reason: both teams were extremely hungry, focused and elevated their games.
The first three games were extremely close, being won by three, four and two points, respectively. The Waters were up two games to one, but Irvine and Bright came back to dominate the fourth. That resulted in an epic final game with the Waters pouring it on at the end, with six unanswered points to win.
Waters then stayed on the court for her final match of the day, where she took the victory with Ben Johns in mixed doubles over Catherine Parenteau and Riley Newman. Parenteau and Newman got off to an extremely hot start and took game one with some aggressive play. Then Waters and Johns strapped down, got serious and played some unbelievable pickleball, winning the next three in a row. Waters played a total of 13 games on Sunday, and admittedly said she was glad it was over in her last post-match interview.
The highly-anticipated rematch between Ben/Collin Johns vs Newman/Matt Wright lived up to the hype in almost every way imaginable. While only going three games, this match possessed trash talk, hands battles and redemption for the brothers. Newman/Wright entered this match winning the previous two against the Johns. They came in with the confidence, the swag and a 10-1 lead to start the first game. Everything was going their way…until it wasn’t.
The Johns came storming back in the first, rattling off seven in a row. Then with a few more defensive stops and serves, they got the last four points they needed. From there, Newman and Wright were in shambles. They didn’t know how to counter the Johns’ adjustments. They tried putting Wright on the left side of their formation and changing their attacks, but to no avail. The Johns are once again on top in men’s doubles. And like any great rivalry, one team isn’t winning all the matches. Now it falls back on Newman/Wright to come up with a game plan to throw off the brothers once again.
JW Johnson and Julian Arnold made it to the finals and put on a heck of a show. Johnson took down the fiery California-native in four games, and even pickled him (winning 11-0) in the third. Even without his spin serve, Johnson was able to dictate points offensively with his deep serves and big third shot drives.
The 20-year-old Johnson, who usually plays in up to three matches on championship Sunday, only played in one this time around. So he came in with his legs under him. He used that additional mobility and energy to not only chase down balls, but plant his feet early and get behind his shots. Arnold implemented his typical aggressive style of play, but it wasn’t enough to top the Florida-product.