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MOUNT GRETNA – Ben Clary knew he liked the Mount Gretna Men’s Club tennis tournament even before he entered it. The way things have unfolded, his intuition has been spot on.

Now they might be asking him to leave.

On a humid Thursday night, Clary captured his third straight Mount Gretna Men’s Club tournament championship with a rugged 6-3, 5-7, 6-2 triumph over Dylan Tull. After the dueling 18-year-olds split the first two sets, Clary won the final five games of the decisive third.

It was number-one seeded Clary’s third Mount Gretna title overall, in four tries. He first entered the event at the age of 16.

It was also a minor consolation prize for Clary – and for that matter Tull as well – who lost out on his senior year of scholastic tennis at Palmyra because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Certainly both Clary and the second-seeded Tull, a recent graduate of Cedar Crest, were ticketed for major hardcourt sucess with their respective schools this spring.

“One of the reasons I like this tournament is that it’s really close to home,” said Clary, who’s off to Bloommsburg to play college tennis. “I used to come out when I was 13 or 14, and I always wanted to play. The rule was you had to be 16 to play. I was just waiting.

“I’m glad I’ve won it three years in-a-row,” added Clary. “This is kind of becoming a streak. I’m going to see how long it can go. I want to win it again next year.”

“I love the atmosphere here,” said Tull, who’s headed to LaSalle to play college tennis. “Just seeing all the people I know. I don’t feel like an outsider. I’m happy how it went. I’m glad we got to have it.”

With momentum squarely on his side, Tull used an early service break to grab a 2-1 edge in the third set. But it was at that point that Clary’s relentless ground strokes began to wear on Tull, and it produced the last five games of the set – and the match.

“In that third set, I felt like I had a little more in the tank,” said Clary. “My cardio was the difference. On clay, I can get away with sitting back and spinning the ball. That’s my style.

“Coming in, I was trying to find out what would work,” continued Clary. “I didn’t want to make any mistakes. I really didn’t know what to expect.”

“He gets to every single shot,” said Tull of Clary. “You can’t get anything past him. His spin is crazy. This is my worst surface, and this is one of this best surfaces. We’re so evenly-matched.”

Clary also captured the first set, but in a somewhat different fashion. Thanks to a service break in the fourth game, Clary won three straight games in the middle of that opening set to establish a 4-1 advantage.

“He strikes the ball so well,” said Clary of Tull. “His forehand is very powerful. It’s hard to defend. When he gets the momentum, he’s tough to beat.”

“I played fine,” said Tull. “It was good to get a match against him. And to get that second set, that was impressive. He was serving for the match, but I’m glad I got it to a third set.”

After Tull had captured the initial two games of the middle set, it was Clary who was on the verge of victory, up 5-4 on serve. But Tull broke him, then proceeded to win the next two games.

“I knew it was going to be a battle coming in,” said Clary. “Being up 5-4, it was frustrating to lose that set. But I new the third set was going to be a new one.”

“I played a little better in the second set,” said Tull. “He was missing his serve. It seemed like there was a lot of service breaks in the second set.”

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Mount Gretna Tennis Club Tournament

Past Singles’ Champions

2015- Mike Lesko

2014 – Dave Wolfe

2013 – Eric Weitzel

2012 – Eric Weitzel

2011 – Mike Rohrbach

2010 – Nick Bybel

2009 – Erik Vargo

2008 – Chris Heilman

2007 – Erik Vargo

2006 – Erik Vargo

2005 – Chris Heilman

2004 – Mike Rohrbach

2003 – Mike Rohrbach

2002 – Mike Rohrbach

2001 – Mike Rohrbach

200o – Mike Rohrbach

1999 – Cancelled, drought

1998 – Dave Wolfe

1997 – Dave Wolfe

1996 – Andy Folmer

1995 – Matt Garman

1994 – Cliff Meyers

1993 – Andy Folmer

1992 – Tom Brink

1991 – Andy Folmer

1990 – Tom Brink

1989 – Mark Moshos

1988 – Mark Moshos

1987 – Mark Moshos

1986 – Mark Moshos

1985 – Steve Hass

1984 – Steve Hass

1983 – Mark Moshos

1982 – Mark Moshos

1981 – Andy Folmer

1980 – Cliff Loercher

1979 – Cliff Loercher

1978 – Cliff Meyers

1977 – Cliff Meyers

1976 – Cliff Meyers

1975 – Cliff Meyers

1974 – Cliff Meyers

1973 – Sam Miller

1972 – Sam Miller

1971 – Sam Miller

1970 – Sam Miller

1969 – Sam Miller

1968 – Sam Miller

 Mount Gretna Tennis Club

 Past Doubles’ Champions

2015 – C. Muraika-G. McNaughton

2014 – A. Behney-T. Deimler

2013 – M. Rohrbach-R. Gallo

2012 – M. Rohrbach-R. Gallo

2011 – M. Rohrbach-R. Gallo

2010 – M. Rohrbach-M. Zimmerman

2009 – M. Rohrbach-E. Vargo

2008 – C. Heilman-M. Bender

2007 – M. Rohrbach-E. Vargo

2006 – E. Vargo-N. Slachta

2005 – M. Rohrbach-P. Rader

2004 – M. Rohrbach-P. Rader

2003 – A. Folmer-J. Montgomery

2002 – M. Rohrbach-T. Bixler

2001 – M. Rohrbach-T. Bixler

2000 – S. Miller-B. Hulme

1999 – Drought, cancelled

1998 – D. Wolfe-M. Garman

1997 – M. Garman-E. Provencio

1996 – M. Garman-E. Provencio

1995 – S. Miller-B. Hulme

1994 – S. Miller-B. Hulme

1993 – C. Meyers-A. Folmer

1992 – T. Brink-E. Weaver

1991 – T. Brink-E. Weaver

1990 – T. Brink-E. Weaver

1989 – C. Meyers-A. Folmer

1988 – T. Brink-E. Weaver

1987 – S. Hass-M. Moshos

1986 – S. Hass-M. Moshos

1985 – S. Hass-M. Moshos

1984 – C. Meyers-A. Folmer

1983 – S. Hass-M. Moshos

1982 – C. Meyers-A. Folmer

1981 – D. Royer-M. Moshos

1980 – R. Early-M. Moshos

1979 – D. Royer-B. Loercher

1978 – C. Meyers-L. Kreider

1977 – D. Royer-B. Loercher

1976 – D. Royer-J. Davis

1975 – S. Miller-L. Kreider

1974 – S. Miller-L. Kreider

1973 – S. Miller-B. Berman

1972 – S. Miller-B. Loercher

1971 – S. Miller-B. Loercher

1970 – S. Miller-B. Loercher

1969 – S. Miller-B. Loercher

1968 – S. Miller-B. Loercher

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