Pickleball is the fastest-growing sport in America, and Maricopa is no exception.
Three teams from the city, all representing the Province 55-plus community, recently earned Arizona Pickleball Players League state titles during the tournament at Dave White Park in Casa Grande.
The large crowds over two days included many from Maricopa, who traveled to support the local squads.
The Province Hot Shots, competing in the women’s 2.5 division, won their regional title, 28-17, before prevailing, 23-20, in the state-championship match. They had dominated opponents during an undefeated regular season. In nine league matches, they scored at least 32 points of a possible 36.
The Red Hot Picklers, in women’s 3.0, were close-match specialists. An 8-1 regular season was capped by a 23-20 victory in their final regular-season contest to earn the league title. The team advanced through the regional, 25-21, and then saved the best for last with one-point nailbiter wins – 23-22 in the state semifinals and 24-23 for the championship.
On the men’s side, Province Gold won its 3.0 regular-season league crown with an 8-1 record. Its only setback came in the final match of the season after it had clinched the league title and a state-tourney berth. The men left no doubt, earning their championship with 30-15 and 28-15 victories.
The state-winning teams combined to win 32 of 34 matches throughout the season, which began in early January.
During the season, 371 teams with nearly 4,000 players competed in the Arizona Pickleball Players League.