Ken Brummel-Smith and Cheryl Wimpey were a great team on the weekend of Aug. 11 and went far in 3.0 mixed doubles, all age groups combined.

Although they didn’t take the gold, two Mount Shasta pickleball players held their own and had a chance against much younger players in the Pickleball Zone Bend Northwest Classic in Bend earlier this month.

Ken Brummel-Smith and Cheryl Wimpey were a great team on the weekend of Aug. 11 and went far in 3.0 mixed doubles, all age groups combined.

The weather caused some chaos but the team didn’t let that detract from their focus and engagement during every match. Some of the matches were moved indoors due to severe rain and that caused a four hour delay in their start time.

In the several matches, the level of play Brummel-Smith and Wimpey executed was far beyond 3.0.

Here are some highlights: in one of the matches they played, their opponents had on quite colorful, matching striped shirts. One of the opponents was very tall and a great poacher. All of that could have been quite distracting, but not for Brummel-Smith and Wimpey. They were focused and unperturbed.

In fact, on match point for the Mount Shasta players, the poachy player very loudly and wildly infiltrated his way into his partner’s space to poach a shot. He then hit the ball with a good amount of pace to Wimpey, who calmly put the ball where the guy should have been: right down the line and toward the baseline. Point, game, match! It was a thing of beauty.

In the bronze medal match, it was neck and neck for awhile. But then you could almost see a visible calm come over Wimpey, after which the other team didn’t stand a chance. Brummel-Smith did a great job running down lobs and returning them in such a way as to either cause the other team to hit it into the net or set Wimpey up, who would then put the ball away. Brummel-Smith also repeatedly demonstrated fast hands at the net to help either keep the rally going or produce the winning shot.

In the gold medal match, Siskiyou County seniors encountered the children: A 14 year old boy and 25 year old woman.

However, Brummel-Smith and Wimpey were doing well against them and absolutely had a shot to take home the gold.

Unfortunately, Wimpey suffered a stumble and fell backwards. She got back up and after some medical attention, continued playing, But it seemed like that took the wind out of her sails.

Up until that point, Brummel-Smith and Wimpey were playing a super smart game against the younsters and showed that youth – with their great speed, reflexes, and vision – can still be challenged, and perhaps beaten, by seniors.