Grayson Goldin hits a serve.
Grayson Goldin competing at the Select Medical Orange County Cup. PPA Tour

Breaking down the substitutions ahead of the MLP Mid-Season Tournament

DALLAS, TX - With a combined $200,000 up for grabs across the Premier and Challenger divisions at this week’s MLP Mid-Season Tournament, the Arizona Drive, Los Angeles Mad Drops, Bay Area Breakers, and California Black Bears are making some temporary roster changes before play begins in Michigan.

Arizona Drive

The Drive will have AJ Koller fill in for Andrei Daescu, who is still serving a suspension after an illegal substance was found on one of his paddles that was submitted for testing at MLP Atlanta.

Koller will compete alongside new PPA No. 1 Dylan Frazier, Lacy Schneemann, and Kaitlyn Christian. Frazier played mixed with Schneemann in the team’s lone event in Atlanta, so it’s likely that Koller will run mixed doubles next to Christian.

Arizona comes into the tournament as the No. 10 seed and will (fittingly, as you’ll see soon) face the No. 7 seeded Los Angeles Mad Drops in the first round.

Los Angeles Mad Drops

Arizona isn’t the only Premier team that will be without its top talent this week. The Mad Drops will be without their top two draft picks, Catherine Parenteau and Thomas Wilson.

Los Angeles will bring in Emily Cederquist to fill in for Parenteau.

The former Cal Poly tennis player was dropped by the California Black Bears during the first waiver period of the season a few weeks ago, but she responded nicely by securing a women’s doubles title alongside Yana Newell at APP Newport Beach this past weekend.

She’ll have another chance to prove she belongs on an MLP roster this week.


Blaine Hovenier will sub in for Wilson—and make his MLP debut in the process. The former UCLA and SMU tennis standout will join Cederquist, Jade Kawamoto, and Hunter Johnson, another SMU tennis alumnus.

Kawamoto and Johnson went 3-0 together in mixed doubles in Atlanta, so it’s likely that they’ll keep playing together for Los Angeles going forward.

Bay Area Breakers

The Bay Area Breakers—and more specifically, their roster construction—have been one of the most intriguing stories in MLP so far this season.

The originally drafted squad of Vivian Glozman, Collin Shick, Rachel Rettger, and Patrick Kawka had a strong start to the year in Atlanta, winning five of six matches.

The Breakers stood in second place in terms of points earned per match after MLP D.C., but that didn’t stop them from being the most active team during the first waiver period of the season.

Before waivers even opened, they executed a trade to send Glozman to D.C. Pickleball Team in exchange for Allyce Jones and $100,000.

Bay Area continued its work from there, adding Jill Braverman in place of Rettger and DJ Young in place of Kawka.

Only Shick remained from the original roster at the conclusion of the first waiver period.

Now, three more substitutions have been announced for the Breakers ahead of this week’s event: 

  •             Rachel Rettger for Allyce Jones
  •             Samantha Parker for Jill Braverman
  •             Grayson Goldin for DJ Young



That’s right. Not one of Bay Area’s newest additions will compete this week. The team will bring back Rettger, who has the second highest “points won” percentage of any Challenger player from her performance in Atlanta (behind only Todd Fought).

She will play alongside Samantha Parker, who will be making her MLP debut. Rettger and Parker played together at some PPAs earlier this summer in Dallas and Sacramento, and this familiarity should benefit Parker as she adjusts to MLP competition.

Goldin will also make his MLP debut for the Breakers. The former USF tennis player is known more for his singles game at this point in his career, but he’s fresh off a run to the Round of 16 in men’s doubles alongside Chris Haworth at PPA San Clemente.

Rettger and Shick went 2-0 when they played together in Atlanta and have picked up some good wins at PPA events together this year, so it seems like it would make sense for them to play together this week, too. That would set the stage for Goldin to play alongside Parker for Bay Area's second mixed doubles pairing.

The Breakers will certainly be a team to watch in Grand Rapids.

California Black Bears

The California Black Bears sit in last place in the Challenger standings after going 1-6 to start off their season in the nation’s capital.

They were fairly active during the waiver period, picking up Susannah Barr and Brandon French to replace Emily Cederquist and DJ Young, respectively.

French is good to go for Grand Rapids, but Barr will not be there. Instead, Michelle Esquivel will fill in to round out the team’s tournament roster that also includes two lefties in Rafa Hewett and Amanda Hendry.


Esquivel will bring with her a wealth of MLP competition experience and should be another valuable veteran presence alongside Hewett.