United vs Wolverines



Date Time League Season Home Away Court
July 30, 2023 4:40 pm Canadian National Pickleball League 2023 United Wolverines 2


The Sleeman Centre
Sleeman Centre, 50, Woolwich Street, Downtown Guelph, Guelph, Southwestern Ontario, Ontario, N1H 3T9, Canada


West Coast Wolverines Rally to Win Four-Game Match over United

United Get Off to Hot Start in Mixed Doubles

Haddow Thul and Vicky Strandlund of the West Coast Wolverines are a formidable pair in mixed doubles. That is, until they ran into the train that was Toronto United’s Matt Kawamoto. The 5’5” dynamo, drafted 20th overall by United, was all over the Pickleroll floor, sending all manner of outstanding shots at the Wolverines as United rolled to a 15-7 triumph.

Kawamoto, who was aided and abetted by a great player in Hannah Blatt, blasted five shots for winners before side break, including forehands, overhands, and backhand flicks. Blatt was his set-up person, in turn contributing a beautiful flick for a point to go into side change up 8-6 on Thul and Strandlund.

Kawamoto picked up right where he left off, scorching a backhand, playing some great defense with Blatt and then hitting a good forehand that just fell over into the Wolverines’ kitchen for a point to go up 11-6. A lengthy dinking match later, highlighted by Kawamoto and Blatt’s complementary play, United pushed the lead to 12-6 and forced the Wolverines to take a breather.

Thul managed to elude United with a forehand return after the timeout, but Blatt answered right away with a forehand masterpiece. Kawamoto played yet another overhand bomb to get to 14-7 freeze and the game then ended quietly when Strandlund returned service long.

Wolverines Mixed Doubles Blow Out United to Square Match

For all intents and purposes, this one was over just after it started. Wolverines’ player of the match Joel Pelletier delivered an overhand bomb right out of the gate in this mixed doubles contest, won easily by Pelletier and Angie Walker by a count of 15-2.

Now Martina Wynia and Daniel Gottfried of United are no slouches, but neither had an answer for Pelletier and Walker’s brilliance. The closest the United pair would get was when Walker set up Pelletier to hit it into the net, to trim the Wolverines’ lead to 4-1. Pelletier scored four of his team’s eight points as the teams went into side change with the Wolverines up 8-1.

Walker and Pelletier dominated the second half too, overcoming any good United defensive play or dinking with seeing eye shots and powerful returns. Walker ripped a return right down the line for a 10-1 lead and Pelletier was a whirlwind a bit later, smacking a return down the line and when United returned that, blowing an overhand by them to go up 14-2. Pelletier and Walker then got together brilliantly to force United into hitting one side out for the victory.

Wolverines Women Stage Epic Comeback in Tight Win over United

As games went in the Eastern Split, this was one for the ages. The Wolverines women’s doubles team of Vicky Strandlund and Angie Walker overcame a seemingly insurmountable 10-4 deficit to Martina Wynia and Hannah Blatt of United, finally winning 15-14.

Wynia was marvelous early on, scoring two of the first three points, including a great backhand, as United roared out to a 3-0 lead. Walker then got the Wolverines on the board with an overhand smoker, only to have Blatt put her side back up by three with two brilliant set-ups for points. Strandlund, with an enormous crossing shot for a point, got the score to 5-3 United. Wynia and Blatt, however, ensured they took a commanding lead into side change, both contributing fabulous shots and dinking well for points to go up 8-4.

The breather didn’t seem to help the Wolverines, as Blatt powered a forehand for yet another point and a 10-4 United lead. Then the Wolverines started chipping away, patiently. Strandlund was a tornado on the court, accounting for three of the next five points to get within one, then combining with Walker to stifle a United offensive charge to tie it 10-10.

With things going their way, the Wolverines got up 12-11 on great dinking, followed by another Strandlund two-point effort, with forehand and backhand winners putting the game at freeze at 14-11 Wolverines.

But, as if by script, United’s Wynia had a hand in getting this one close again, ripping a forehand winner to trim the lead to 14-12, getting one to roll just over the net for another and finally playing outstanding defense with Blatt to tie it up, again. Two freezes later, though, Strandlund made her final statement, putting another behind United for the huge victory.

Wolverines Men Ensure Match Victory with Hard Fought Win over United

The score may have looked a little lopsided – 15-10 in favor of the Wolverines – but the United pair of Matt Kawamoto and Daniel Gottfried gave it their best shot. Haddow Thul and Joel Pelletier needed to be cagey and know when to roll from defense to offense to have a chance at winning the game and match for their team. And they did, with aplomb, taking an early lead and never relinquishing it.

The play of the match had to happen with the Wolverines up 3-1 and the two teams trading shots in an extended dinking rally. The Wolverines won the point, however, by playing stifling defense to go up 4-1. To their credit, Kawamoto and Gottfried didn’t let that faze them, as they too played cohesive defense and dinked their way to a 5-5 tie. The teams then traded points to push the count to 7-7, just before Thul hit a tremendous cross to send the Wolverines ahead at 8-7 to side change.

Thul was instrumental after the break, setting up United for two side outs and then contributing defensively to help get the Wolverines to an 11-8 cushion. Both he and Pelletier smoked superb backhand shots to get to freeze at 14-8. Yet, Gottfried with a nice backhand flick, and Kawamoto with a forehand smash, kept the Wolverines at freeze up 14-10.

The freeze held for one more play, putting the serve back into the Wolverines hands, winning it on a dazzling Thul cross shot that eluded both Kawamoto and Gottfried.




Player Player of the Match Category wins Category PF Category PA Mixed wins Mixed PF Mixed PA Mixed partner
Martina Wynia0014150215Daniel Gottfried
Hannah Blatt0014151157Matt Kawamoto
Matt Kawamoto0010151157Hannah Blatt
Daniel Gottfried0010150215Martina Wynia

General Manager: Ricky Liorti


Player Player of the Match Category wins Category PF Category PA Mixed wins Mixed PF Mixed PA Mixed partner
Haddow Thul0115100715Vicky Strandlund
Joel Pelletier1115101152Angie Walker
Vicky Strandlund0115140715Haddow Thul
Angie Walker0115141152Joel Pelletier

General Manager: Steve Deakin