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Sunday, February 18, 2018

UCLA, Wake Forest Advance to ITA Men's Team Indoor Final; Grade 1 Banana Bowl Begins Monday; Anderson Wins New York Open; Photo Gallery of USTA Level 2 in Lake Nona

Top seed Wake Forest advanced to the final of the ITA Men's Division I Team Indoor Championships for the first time in its history, while No. 7 seed UCLA reached its first final since 2004 with nail-biting wins on Sunday in Seattle. UCLA claimed a 4-2 victory over No. 6 seed Texas A&M with senior Martin Redlicki clinching the win for the Bruins at line 1, while Wake Forest outlasted No. 5 seed Stanford 4-3, with sophomore Borna Gojo coming from behind to win a third set tiebreaker, also at line 1.

UCLA won the doubles point, as it has done in all three of its wins this weekend, but Texas A&M took four first sets in singles, and quickly tied the score with a win by freshman Juan Carlos Aguilar at line 5.  UCLA started its comeback in singles by earning splits at lines 3, 1 and 6, while Logan Staggs made it 2-1 Bruins with a straight-sets win over Valentin Vacherot  at line 4. Freshman Keegan Smith put UCLA ahead 3-1 with a three-set victory over Jordi Arconada, meaning Texas A&M had to win all three matches still on court.  Redlicki and Patrick Kypson were tied at 3 in the third set at line 1, while A&M's AJ Catanzariti, playing for the first time in the tournament was also at 3-3 in the third at line 6, against freshman Connor Hance. UCLA's Evan Zhu had a chance to end the match against Arthur Rinderknech in straight sets, but he lost the second set tiebreaker just as Redlicki was breaking Kypson to serve for the match at 5-4 in the third.

Redlicki saved a break point at 30-40, but Kypson hit a backhand crosscourt pass on the deciding point to keep his team alive, and held easily in the next game.  Redlicki had to win a deciding point on his serve, which he did with a good first serve, to send the match to a tiebreaker, and he led 3-1 and then again 5-4 with two serves to come in the tiebreaker, but couldn't close out Kypson. Redlicki had to save another match point at 5-6, which he did with a big forehand that forced an error from Kypson.

Kypson netted a forehand to give Redlicki a second match point, and he missed his first serve. On his second serve, a deep one, Kypson called the ball out as he returned it, but the chair umpire overruled him, giving Redlicki the match and UCLA the victory.

In the evening match, Wake Forest won the doubles point quickly, but the teams split first sets in singles, indicating the match would be a lengthy one. Wake went up 2-0 with Petros Chrysochos defeating Axel Geller 6-4, 6-3, and Stanford countered with a 6-4, 6-2 win by David Wilczynski over Christian Seraphim at line 5, but nothing came easy for either team after that.  Stanford tied it up with Eric Fomba's 7-5, 7-5 win over Bar Botzer at line 4, with the other three matches all in the third set.  Stanford's William Genesen was up a break in the final set at line 6, but Julian Zlobinsky roared through the final five games for a 7-5, 3-6, 6-3 victory that gave Wake Forest a 3-2 lead. Stanford's Sameer Kumar held on to his early break and closed out Skander Mansouri 6-7(10), 6-3, 6-4 at line 3, just as Tom Fawcett and Gojo were heading to a third set tiebreaker at line 1.

Fawcett, who had been up a set and 4-2 earlier in the match, took a 4-1 lead in the tiebreaker, but lost four consecutive points.  At 5-5, Gojo stayed aggressive, executing a perfect forehand volley winner to earn a match point, but on Fawcett's serve. Fawcett did get his first serve in and he also committed to aggressive play, coming to the net. But a net cord threw his timing off and he netted a volley, giving Gojo and Wake Forest the victory.

The final on Monday is scheduled for 3 p.m. eastern time, and live streaming will be available here.

ITA Men’s Division I Team Indoor Championships
Semifinals, February 18, 2018, Seattle WA

No. 7 UCLA  4, No. 6 Texas A&M 2

1. Patrick Kypson/Arthur Rinderknech(TexasA&M) vs Martin Redlicki/Evan Zhu(UCLA), 6-5, unfinished
2. Keegan Smith/Austin Rapp(UCLA) def. Jordi Arconada/Juan Carlos Aguilar(TexasA&M), 6-4
3. Maxime Cressy/Bryce Pereira(UCLA) def. Valentin Vacherot/Barnaby Smith(TexasA&M), 6-3

Order of finish: 3, 2

1. Martin Redlicki(UCLA) def. Patrick Kypson(TexasA&M), 3-6, 6-4, 7-6(6)
2. Evan Zhu(UCLA) vs Arthur Rinderknech(TexasA&M), 7-6(5), 6-7(1), 2-2, unfinished
3. Keegan Smith(UCLA) def. Jordi Arconada(TexasA&M), 3-6, 6-3, 6-4
4. Logan Staggs(UCLA) def. Valentin Vacherot(TexasA&M), 7-5, 7-5
5. Juan Carlos Aguilar(TexasA&M) def. Maxime Cressy(UCLA), 6-2, 6-2
6. AJ Catanzariti(TexasA&M) def. Connor Hance(UCLA), 6-3, 4-6, 6-3

Order of finish: 5, 4, 3, 6, 1

No. 1 Wake Forest 4, No. 5 Stanford 3 

1. Sameer Kumar/Michael Genender(Stanford) vs Christian Seraphim/Ian Dempster(Wake), 4-2, unfinished
2. Borna Gojo/Skander Mansouri(Wake) def. Axel Geller/Tom Fawcett(Stanford), 6-3
3. Petros Chrysochos/Bar Botzer(Wake) def. David Wilczynski/Timothy Sah(Stanford), 6-1

Order of finish: 3, 2

1. Borna Gojo(Wake) def. Tom Fawcett(Stanford) 3-6, 7-6(5), 7-6(5)
2. Petros Chrysochos(Wake) def. Axel Geller(Stanford), 6-4, 6-3
3. Sameer Kumar(Stanford) def. Skander Mansouri(Wake), 6-7(10), 6-3, 6-4
4. Eric Fomba(Stanford) def. Bar Botzer(Wake), 7-5, 7-5
5. David Wilczynski(Stanford) def. Christian Seraphim(Wake), 6-4, 6-2
6. Julian Zlobinsky(Wake) def. William Genesen(Stanford), 7-5, 3-6, 6-3

Order of finish: 2, 5, 4, 6, 3, 1

Qualifying was completed today at the ITF Grade 1 Banana Bowl in Brazil, with 14-year-old Alexandra Yepifanova the only American to get through to the main draw. The 13 US girls in the 48-player draw, with the seeds getting first round byes:  Addison Guevara, Sabina Dadaciu[15], Peyton Stearns[6], Lea Ma[4], Yepifanova, Vanessa Ong, Hailey Baptiste[11], Shelly Yaloz, Elli Mandlik[10], Kacie Harvey, Katie Volynets, Chloe Beck[12] and Alexa Noel[2].  Maria Osorio Serrano of Colombia, who has already won three Grade 1s this year, is the top seed.

The eight US boys in the 48-player draw are Eliot Spizzirri, Drew Baird[6], Tyler Zink[16], Will Grant, Govind Nanda, Nathan Han, Tristan Boyer[5] and Brian Shi.  Sebastian Baez of Argentina is the top seed.

The only USTA Pro Circuit event this week was a $25,000 tournament in Surprise Arizona. Julia Boserup[8] was the only American to reach the singles quarterfinals, with No. 2 seed Yanina Wickmayer of Belgium winning the title with a 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 win over qualifier Ana Sofia Sanchez of Mexico.  Wickmayer and partner Misaki Doi of Japan won the doubles title, with the No. 3 seeds beating No. 4 seeds Jacqueline Cako(Arizona State) and Caitlin Whoriskey(Tennessee) 2-6, 6-3, 10-8 in the final.

Former University of Illinois star Kevin Anderson won the ATP New York Open, with the top-seeded South African beating No. 2 seed Sam Querrey 4-6, 6-3, 7-6(1).  With his fourth ATP title, the 31-year-old Anderson moves to a career-high ranking of 9. For more, see the ATP website.

The Tennis Recruiting Network has posted a Zootennis photo gallery from the USTA National Level 2 in Lake Nona. Photos of 34 of the participants in that 18s tournament can be viewed here.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

UCLA, Stanford, Wake Forest and Texas A&M Advance to Men's Team Indoor Semifinals; Shaikh Wins Second Straight ITF Junior Title

The first round of the ITA Men's Division I Team Indoor Championships went according to form, with the top 8 seeds advancing to the quarterfinals for the first time since 2004, according to Bobby Knight at College Tennis Today.  It was surprising that this year, which is considered to feature plenty of parity, would be so predictable, but that lasted only one day, with No. 2 seed Ohio State, No. 3 seed North Carolina and No. 4 seed Georgia all falling in today's quarterfinals.

Ohio State, the runner-up to Virginia last year, lost the doubles point for the first team this season to No. 7 seed UCLA, and the Bruins didn't let up, getting impressive wins from freshman Connor Hance, Evan Zhu and Logan Staggs, who clinched the 4-1 upset.

No. 5 seed Stanford took the doubles point from Georgia without much fuss, but the next three points were harder to come by.  William Genesen and freshman Axel Geller provided two straight-set wins, with Tom Fawcett clinching the 4-2 victory for the Cardinal with a three-set win at line 1.

Top seed Wake Forest lost the doubles point to No. 8 seed USC, but came out strong in singles, getting straight-sets wins from the top 4 in their lineup to close out the 4-1 victory.

The first match to go the distance was No. 6 Texas A&M's 4-3 win over North Carolina.  The Aggies dropped the doubles point, but took five first sets in singles, and they held on to four of those points, but not without plenty of drama.  The match was decided at No. 2, between freshman Benjamin Sigouin of North Carolina and Texas A&M's Arthur Rinderknech.  Rinderknech took the first set 6-4, lost the second 7-5, and early in the third set, they were the only match still going.  Serving at 3-4, Rinderknech saved a break point on a deciding point. Sigouin then fell behind 15-40, saved two break points, but not a third, giving Rinderknech the opportunity to serve for the match. He closed it out at 40-30, a result that had to be particularly satisfying as Rinderknech lost the deciding match in last weekend's 4-3 loss to Ohio State in Columbus.

Texas A&M will face UCLA at 3 p.m. Eastern Sunday, with Stanford and Wake Forest following at 6:30 p.m. I believe both matches will be live streamed here.

ITA Men’s Division I Team Indoor Championships
Quarterfinals, February 17, Seattle WA

No. 5 Stanford 4, No. 4 Georgia 2

1. Sameer Kumar/Michael Genender(Stanford) vs Robert Loeb and Jan Zielinski(Georgia) 3-4, unfinished
2. Tom Fawcett/Axel Geller(Stanford) def. Wayne Montgomery/Walker Duncan(Georgia), 6-3
3. David Wilczynski/Timothy Sah(Stanford) def. Alex Diaz/Paul Oosterbaan(Georgia), 6-3

Order of finish: 2, 3

1. Tom Fawcett(Stanford) def. Wayne Montgomery(Georgia), 7-6(4), 3-6, 6-3
2. Axel Geller(Stanford) def. Emil Reinberg(Georgia), 7-5, 6-3
3. Sameer Kumar(Stanford) vs Nathan Ponwith(Georgia), 6-3, 4-6, 6-6, unfinished
4. Jan Zielinski(Georgia) def. Eric Fomba(Stanford), 3-6, 6-3, 6-2
5. Walker Duncan(Georgia) def. David Wilczynski(Stanford), 6-3, 6-3
6. William Genesen(Stanford) def. Paul Oosterbaan(Georgia), 7-5, 6-3

Order of finish: 5, 6, 2, 1

No. 7 UCLA 4, No. 2 Ohio State 1 

1. Mikael Torpegaard/Martin Joyce(Ohio State) vs Martin Redlicki/Evan Zhu(UCLA) 6-5, unfinished
2. Austin Rapp/Keegan Smith(UCLA) def. John McNally/JJ Wolf(Ohio State), 6-4
3. Maxime Cressy/Bryce Pereira(UCLA) def. Hunter Tubert/Matthew Mendez(Ohio State), 6-4

Order of finish: 3, 2

1. Mikael Torpegaard(Ohio State) def. Martin Redlicki(UCLA), 6-4, 6-4
2. Evan Zhu(UCLA) def. JJ Wolf(Ohio State), 6-3, 7-6(5)
3. John McNally(Ohio State) vs Keegan Smith(UCLA), 6-4, 2-6, 3-1, unfinished
4. Logan Staggs(UCLA) def. Tim Seibert(Ohio State), 7-5, 6-3
5. Maxime Cressy(UCLA) vs Kyle Seelig(Ohio State), 7-6(3), 5-6, unfinished
6. Connor Hance(UCLA) def. Martin Joyce(Ohio State), 6-3, 6-4

Order of finish: 6, 1, 2, 4

No. 1 Wake Forest 4, No. 8 USC 1

1. Brandon Holt/Riley Smith(USC) def. Christian Seraphim/Ian Dempster(Wake), 6-4
2. Borna Gojo/Skander Mansouri(Wake) def. Jack Jaede/Laurens Verboven(USC), 6-1
3. Tanner Smith/Daniel Cukierman(USC)def. Petros Chrysochos/Bar Botzer(Wake), 6-3

Order of finish: 2, 3, 1

1. Borna Gojo(Wake) def. Brandon Holt(USC), 6-3, 6-3
2. Petros Chrysochos(Wake) def. Daniel Cukierman(USC), 6-4, 6-3
3. Skander Mansouri(Wake) def. Logan Smith(USC), 6-1, 6-1
4. Bar Botzer(Wake) def. Jack Jaede(USC), 7-5, 6-2
5. Christian Seraphim(Wake) vs Laurens Verboven(USC), 6-3, 5-6, unfinished
6. Jake Devine(USC) vs Julian Zlobinsky(Wake) 7-6(5), 2-5, unfinished

Order of finish: 3, 1, 2, 4

No. 6 Texas A&M 4, No. 3 North Carolina 3

1. William Blumberg/Robert Kelly(UNC) def. Patrick Kypson/Arthur Rinderknech(TexasA&M), 6-2
2. Benjamin Sigouin/Anu Kodali(UNC) vs Jordi Arconada/Juan Carlos Aguilar(TexasA&M), 3-5 unfinished
3. Mac Kiger/Simon Soendergaard(UNC) def. Barnaby Smith/Valentin Vacherot(TexasA&M), 6-4

Order of finish: 1, 3

1. William Blumberg(UNC) def. Patrick Kypson(TexasA&M), 3-6, 6-4, 6-1
2. Arthur Rinderknech(TexasA&M) def. Benjamin Sigouin(UNC), 6-4, 5-7, 6-4
3. Jordi Arconada(TexasA&M) def. Robert Kelly(UNC), 7-6(6), 6-1
4. Valentin Vacherot(TexasA&M) def. Simon Soendergaard(UNC), 6-0, 4-6, 6-4
5. Juan Carlos Aguilar(TexasA&M) def. Josh Peck(UNC), 6-2, 6-4
6. Bo Boyden(UNC) def. Barnaby Smith(TexasA&M), 6-3, 7-6(3)

Order of finish: 3, 5, 6, 1, 4, 2


In ITF junior circuit news, 15-year-old Hibah Shaikh won her second consecutive ITF tournament in her second ITF tournament played. Last year, Shaikh won a Grade 5 in Antigua and Barbuda in her ITF junior debut. Today, she claimed the title at the Grade 4 Jalisco Junior Cup in Mexico. Shaikh, who was unseeded, defeated No. 12 seed Jada Bui of Canada 7-6(3), 7-5 in the final, collecting her 10th straight singles win on the ITF Junior Circuit.   Unseeded Kailey Evans and Savannah Broadus reached the doubles final, losing to No. 3 seeds Romary Cardenas Rifka of Mexico and Jessica Plazas of Colombia 7-5, 6-3.

The top-seeded Colombians swept the singles titles at the ITF Grade 1 in Paraguay.  Maria Osorio Serrano defeated unseeded Ana Geller of Argentina 6-3, 6-1 and Nicolas Mejia downed No. 5 seed Filip Jianu of Romania 7-6(6), 7-5.

Friday, February 16, 2018

My Recap of USTA 18s Level 2 in Orlando; Baird, Noel Win Doubles Titles at G1 in Paraguay; First Round Underway at ITA Men's Division I Team Indoor;

As I mentioned earlier this week, I spent Sunday and Monday at the USTA National Level 2 tournament in Lake Nona Florida and my coverage of the titles by 16-year-olds Briana Crowley and Ron Hohmann is available now at the Tennis Recruiting Network. These 3-day tournaments squeeze a lot of tennis--five best of three singles matches for the semifinalists and finalists, plus doubles--into a short period of time, but at least for this age group, the players seemed able to handle the workload.

Both Drew Baird and Hailey Baptiste lost in the singles semifinals of the Grade 1 Asuncion Bowl today in Paraguay.  Baptiste, the No. 4 seed, lost to top seed Maria Osorio Serrano of Colombia 4-6, 6-4, 7-6(1), while Baird, also seeded No. 4, was beaten by No. 5 seed Filip Jianu of Romania 6-4, 6-4.  Baird did pick up a title however, in doubles.  He and Nicolas Mejia of Colombia, the No. 1 seeds, defeated the No. 4 seeds Igor Gimenez and Joao Reis da Silva of Brazil 6-3, 6-3 in the final. The top seeds in the girls doubles, Alexa Noel and her partner Ana Markatsaria of Georgia, defeated No. 2 seeds Kacie Harvey and Vanessa Ong 6-3, 6-1 in the final.

The opening day of competition at the ITA Men's Division I Team Indoor Championships has yet to produce an upset, or any compelling match really, with No. 2 seed Ohio State, No. 3 seed North Carolina and No. 6 seed Texas A&M blanking Duke, Notre Dame and Florida respectively.  No. 4 Georgia beat Columbia 4-1 and The only close matches were No. 7 UCLA's 4-2 win over No. 10 Illinois and No. 5 Stanford's 4-2 win over No. 12 Baylor.

Because it could be after midnight when results of the last two matches (No. 1 Wake Forest v No. 16 Washington and No. 8 USC v No. 9 Oklahoma State) are known, I won't wait for them before posting, but I will add those results to this post Saturday morning.

For a preview of the tournament, which includes a UTR for each of the players, see College Tennis Today.

ITA Men’s Team Indoor
First Round, February 16

No. 2 Ohio State 4, No. 15 Duke 0

No. 1: Mikael Torpegaard/Martin Joyce (OSU) def. Nick Stachowiak/Sean Sculley (DUKE) 6-3 No. 2: JJ Wolf/John McNally (OSU) vs. Nicolas Alvarez/Catalin Mateas (DUKE) 4-5, unfinished No. 3: Hunter Tubert/Matt Mendez (OSU) def. Jason Lapidus/Ryan Dickerson (DUKE) 6-3
Order of Finish: 3, 1

No. 1: Mikael Torpegaard (OSU) vs. Nico Alvarez (UGA) 2-6, 6-2, unfinished
No. 2: JJ Wolf (OSU) def. Catalin Mateas (DUKE) 6-2, 5-5, unfinished
No. 3: John McNally (OSU) vs. Nick Stachowiak (DUKE) 3-6, 6-2, 1-2, unfinished
No. 4: Tim Seibert (OSU) def. Sean Sculley (DUKE) 6-4, 6-2
No. 5: Kyle Seelig (OSU) def. Ryan Dickerson (DUKE) 6-0, 6-2
No. 6: Martin Joyce (OSU) def. Robert Levine (DUKE) 6-3, 6-4

Order of finish: 5, 6, 4

No. 7 UCLA 4, No. 10 Illinois 2

No. 1: Martin Redlicki/Evan Zhu (UCLA) def. Aron Hiltzik/Aleks Vukic (ILL) 6-3
No. 2: Austin Rapp/Keegan Smith (UCLA) vs. Zeke Clark/Aleks Kovacevic (ILL) 5-4, unfinished No. 3: Maxime Cressy/Bryce Pereira (UCLA) def. Alex Brown/Caleb Chakravarthi (ILL) 6-4
Order of Finish: 1, 3

No. 1: Martin Redlicki (UCLA) def. Aleks Vukic (ILL) 6-4, 2-6, 6-3
No. 2: Aron Hiltzik (ILL) def. Evan Zhu (UCLA) 6-3, 7-5
No. 3: Keegan Smith (UCLA) def. Alex Brown (ILL) 7-6 (8), 6-3
No. 4: Zeke Clark (ILL) def. Logan Staggs (UCLA) 6-2, 6-4
No. 5: Maxime Cressy (UCLA) vs. Aleks Kovacevic (ILL) 6-3, 6-7 (2), 6-6, unfinished
No. 6: Connor Hance (UCLA) def. Caleb Chakrvarthi (ILL) 6-3, 7-5

Order of finish: 4, 3, 6, 2, 1

No. 6 Texas A&M 4, No. 11 Florida 0

1. Patrick Kypson/Arthur Rinderknech (TAMU) def. McClain Kessler/Duarte Vale (UF) 7-5
2. Alfredo Perez/Oliver Crawford (UF) def. Juan Carlos Aguilar/Jordi Arconada (TAMU) 6-4
3. Valentin Vacherot/Barnaby Smith (TAMU) def. Johannes Ingildsen/Chase Perez-Blanco (UF) 6-2

Order of finish: 3, 2, 1

1. Patrick Kypson (TAMU) def. #9 Alfredo Perez (UF) 4-6, 6-3, 6-1
2. Arthur Rinderknech (TAMU) def. #7 Johannes Ingildsen (UF) 7-6(4), 6-4
3. Jordi Arconada (TAMU) def. #43 Duarte Vale (UF) 6-2, 6-1
4. Valentin Vacherot (TAMU) vs. Oliver Crawford (UF) 7-6(4), 4-6, 0-1, unfinished
5. Juan Carlos Aguilar (TAMU) vs. Andy Andrade (UF) 5-7, 6-5, unfinished
6. Barnaby Smith (TAMU) vs. McClain Kessler (UF) 6-1, 4-6, 4-2, unfinished

Order of finish: 3, 2, 1

No. 3 North Carolina 4,  No. 14 Notre Dame 0

1. No. 11 William Blumberg/Robert Kelly (UNC) def. Brendon Kempin/Tristan McCormick (ND) 6-1
2. Benjamin Sigouin/Anu Kodali (UNC) def. Alex Lebedev/William Howells (ND) 7-5
3. Richard Ciamarra/Matt Gamble (ND) def. Mac Kiger/Simon Soendergaard (UNC) 6-3

Order of finish: 1, 3, 2

1. No. 4 William Blumberg (UNC) def. No. 28 Alex Lebedev (ND) 7-5, 6-0
2. No. 57 Benjamin Sigouin (UNC) def. No. 118 Guillermo Cabrera (ND) 6-2, 6-1
3. Tristan McCormick (ND) vs. No. 81 Robert Kelly (UNC) 3-6, 4-3, unfinished
4. No. 124 Simon Soendergaard (UNC) def. Richard Ciamarra (ND) 6-4, 6-1
5. Matt Gamble (ND) vs. Josh Peck (UNC) 3-6, 5-4, unfinished
6. Grayson Broadus (ND) vs. Bo Boyden (UNC) 1-6, 2-4, unfinished

Order of finish: 2, 1, 4

No. 4 Georgia 4, No. 13 Columbia 1

1. Robert Loeb/Jan Zielinski (Georgia) def. Victor Pham/Jackie Tang (COL), 7-6(6)
2. Walker Duncan/Wayne Montgomery (Georgia) def. Jack Lin/William Matheson (COL), 6-2
3. Adam Ambrozy/Michael Rolski (COL) def. Alex Diaz/Paul Oosterbaan (Georgia), 6-4

Order of finish: 2, 3, 1

1. Wayne Montgomery (Georgia) vs. Victor Pham (COL), 4-6, 5-5, unfinished
2. Jackie Tang (COL) def. Emil Reinberg (Georgia), 6-2, 7-5
3. Nathan Ponwith (Georgia) vs. Jack Lin (COL), 5-7, 3-4, unfinished
4. Jan Zielinski (Georgia) def. Adam Ambrozy (COL), 7-5, 6-4
5. Walker Duncan (Georgia) def. Alex Keyser (COL), 6-4, 6-3
6. Paul Oosterbaan (Georgia) def. Tim Wang (COL), 6-2, 6-3

Order of finish: 6, 5, 2, 4

No. 5 Stanford 4, No. 12 Baylor 2

1. Johannes Schretter/Will Little (Baylor) def. Michael Genender/Sameer Kumar (Stanford), 6-4
2. Tom Fawcett/Axel Geller (Stanford) def. Bjoern Petersen/Jimmy Bendeck (Baylor), 6-3
3. David Wilczynski/Timothy Sah (Stanford) def. Matias Soto/Roy Smith (Baylor) 7-6(6)

Order of finish: 2, 1, 3

1. Tom Fawcett (Stanford) def. Bjoern Petersen (Baylor), 6-2, 6-1
2. Axel Geller (Stanford ) def. Johannes Schretter (Baylor), 6-4, 6-3
3. Matias Soto (Baylor) def.  Sameer Kumar (Stanford) 6-1, 2-6, 6-3
4. Eric Fomba (Stanford) def. Will Little (Baylor) 2-6, 6-2, 6-2
5. Roy Smith (Baylor) def.  David Wilczynski (Stanford) 6-2, 6-4
6. William Genesen (Stanford) vs. Constantin Frantzen (Baylor) 4-6, 6-6, unfinished

Order of finish: 1, 5, 2, 3, 4

No. 1 Wake Forest 4, No. 16 Washington 0

1. Enzo Sommer/Kawika Lam (UW) def. Christian Seraphim/Ian Dempster (WF), 6-4
2. Borna Gojo/Skander Mansouri (WF) def. Jake Douglas/Jack Davis (UW), 6-4
3. Petros Chrysochos/Bar Botzer (WF) def. Piers Foley/Mitch Stewart (UW), 6-2

Order of Finish: 3, 1, 2

1. Borna Gojo (WF) vs. #48 Jake Douglas (UW), 6-3, 5-4, unfinished
2. Petros Chrysochos (WF) vs. Mitch Stewart (UW), 6-2, 5-3, unfinished
3. Skander Mansouri (WF) vs. Enzo Sommer (UW), 6-4, 5-3, unfinished
4. Bar Botzer (WF) def. Amit Batta (UW), 6-3, 6-1
5. Christian Seraphim (WF) def. Piers Foley (UW), 6-4, 6-1
6. Julian Zlobinsky (WF) def. Seb Hawken (UW), 6-4, 6-2

Order of Finish: 5, 6, 4


No. 8 USC 4, No. 9 Oklahoma State 1

1. Julian Cash/Luke Hammond (OKST) def. Brandon Holt/Riley Smith (USC), 6-2
2. Jack Jaede/Laurens Verboven (USC) def. Artur Dubinski/Eleftherios Theodorou (OKST), 6-2
3. Daniel Cukierman/Tanner Smith (USC) def. Jurence Mendoza/Mathieu Scaglia (OKST), 6-1

Order of finish: 3, 1, 2

1. Brandon Holt (USC) def. #88 Julian Cash (OKST), 6-4, 4-6, 6-3
2. Daniel Cukierman (USC) vs. #94 Artur Dubinski (OKST), 5-7, 6-4, 5-1,  unfinished
3. Tristan Meraut (OKST) def. #119 Logan Smith (USC), 6-1, 6-4
4. Jack Jaede (USC) def. #55 Mathieu Scaglia (OKST), 6-4, 6-4
5. Laurens Verboven (USC) def. Jurence Mendoza (OKST), 7-6(6), 6-3
6. Jake DeVine (USC) vs. #125 Luke Hammond (OKST) 7-6 (4), 4-6, 3-4, unfinished

Order of finish: 3, 4, 5, 1

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Baird and Baptiste Reach Semifinals at ITF Grade 1 in Paraguay; Daavettila Named Most Outstanding Player at Team Indoor; Bellis and Tiafoe Through to Quarterfinals

This week's ITF Grade 1 in Paraguay is the start of three consecutive tournaments, which culminates in the Porto Alegre Grade A in Brazil. Several of the US juniors who are playing in this South American swing did not play in the previous Grade 1 events in Central and South America: Drew Baird, who played Australia instead, Katie Volynets, who hadn't played in 2018 until this week, Hailey Baptiste, who played just one Pro Circuit tournament last month and Charlotte Owensby, who played only the Coffee Bowl back in early January.

All four have had good weeks at the Asuncion Bowl this week, with the 14-year-old Owensby, a qualifier, and 16-year-old Volynets reaching the quarterfinals before losing today. Owensby lost to Ana Geller of Argentina 3-6, 6-0, 6-2 and Volynets, the No. 9 seed, was beaten by top seed Maria Osorio Serrano of Colombia 6-3, 7-6(4).  Osorio Serrano won the Grade 1 in Costa Rica and the Grade 1 in Colombia back-to-back late last month.  The fourth-seeded Baptiste, who struggled in the second half of 2017, last made a Grade 1 semifinal at last February's Banana Bowl. She defeated No. 7 seed Loudmilla Bencheikh of France 6-4, 7-5 in today's quarterfinals and will face Osorio Serrano in Friday's semifinal.  Alexa Noel, the No. 2 seed, lost to unseeded Leylah Fernandez of Canada in the third round.

Baird, the No. 4 seed, defeated No. 7 seed Taisei Ichikawa of Japan 6-4, 6-4 in the quarterfinals to set up a semifinal meeting with No. 5 seed Filip Jianu of Romania. Baird has also reached the doubles final, with Nicolas Mejia of Colombia.  At least one of the girls doubles champions will be from the United States, with Noel and Ana Makatsaria of Georgia, the No. 1 seeds, facing No. 2 seeds Kacie Harvey and Vanessa Ong.

The ITA announced the All-Tournament team for the Women's Division I Team Indoor, with champion North Carolina's Sara Daavettila named the Most Outstanding Player.  The All-Tournament team is below, with details on each player's results available in the ITA release.

No. 1 singles: Ashley Lahey, Pepperdine
No. 2 singles: Sara Daavettila, North Carolina
No. 3 singles: Christina Rosca, Vanderbilt
No. 4 singles: Alexa Graham, North Carolina
No. 5 singles: Meible Chi, Duke
No. 6 singles: Amanda Meyer, Vanderbilt

No. 1 doubles: Jessie Aney and Alexa Graham, North Carolina
No. 2 doubles: Mariana Gould and Katarina Jokic, Georgia
No. 3 doubles: Christina Rosca and Amanda Meyer, Vanderbilt

Most Outstanding Player: Sara Daavettila, North Carolina

Two young Americans earned professional milestones today, with CiCi Bellis getting her first WTA Top 5 win and Frances Tiafoe reaching his first ATP quarterfinal.  Bellis, a qualifier, defeated No. 5 seed and defending champion Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic 7-6(4), 6-3 to advance the the quarterfinals at Doha's WTA Premier 5 event, where she will face No. 2 seed Simona Halep of Romania. For more on the Bellis upset, see the WTA website.

Tiafoe downed Dudi Sela of Israel 6-4, 3-6, 6-0 in the second round of the ATP 250 New York Open to reach an ATP quarterfinal for the first time. The 20-year-old will face top seed Kevin Anderson of South Africa, who just squeezed by qualifier Ernesto Escobedo 3-6, 6-4, 7-6(5).

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

North Carolina Women Move to No. 1 in ITA Rankings; Men's D-I Team Indoor Draw Released; Bellis Defeats Keys in Doha

The new ITA women's team rankings reflect the results of the recently completed Team Indoor Championships, with winner North Carolina taking over the top spot and finalist Pepperdine moving to No. 2.  Florida dropped all the way from 3 to 18, while Wake Forest moved from 21 to 11.

ITA Women's Division I Top 10 Feb 14 (previous ranking in parentheses):
1. North Carolina (5)
2. Pepperdine (6)
3. Vanderbilt (2)
4. Duke (9)
5. Georgia (4)
6. Stanford (1)
7. Georgia Tech (7)
8. Texas Tech (8)
9. Ole Miss (15)
10. UCLA (13)

There were no new ITA individual rankings this week, and the with the Men's Team Indoor Championships beginning Friday, men's team rankings were not released, but the seeds reflect the rankings, particularly with all the top men's teams playing.

The men's Team Indoor seeds:

1. Wake Forest
2. Ohio State
3. North Carolina
4. Georgia
5. Stanford
6. Texas A&M
8. USC
9. Oklahoma State
10. Illinois
11. Florida
12. Baylor
13. Columbia
14. Notre Dame
15. Duke
16. Washington (host)

The pairings and times for Friday's first round:

9 a.m. (Pacific)
Ohio State[2] v Duke[15]
UCLA [7] v Illinois [10]

North Carolina[3] v Notre Dame[14]
Texas A&M[6] v Florida[11]

3:30 p.m.
Georgia[4] v Columbia[13]
Stanford[5] v Baylor[12]

6:30 p.m.
Wake Forest [1] v Washington[16]
USC[8] v Oklahoma State[9]

The USTA weekly rankings were also released today, with Ohio State holding on to its top spot in the men's rankings.

USTA Men's Top 10 rankings Feb. 14 (last week's ranking in parentheses):

1. Ohio State (1)
2. North Carolina (2)
3. Wake Forest (3)
T4. Georgia (4)
T4. Stanford (5)
6. Texas A&M (6)
7. USC (7)
8. UCLA (8)
9. Illinois (9)
10. Oklahoma State (10)

The USTA women's rankings also changed based on the results from the Team Indoor.

USTA Women's Top 10 rankings Feb. 14:

1. North Carolina (3)
2. Pepperdine (4)
3. Vanderbilt (1)
4. Georgia (2)
5. Duke (8)
6. Stanford (5)
7. Texas Tech (6)
8. Georgia Tech (7)
9. Wake Forest (T12)
10. Mississippi (T12)

At the WTA event in Doha, a couple of young qualifiers picked up big victories in the second round.  Nineteen-year-old Anna Blinkova of Russia beat No. 11 seed Kristina Mladenovic of France 6-3, 6-3, and 18-year-old CiCi Bellis beat No. 12 seed Madison Keys 2-6, 6-3, 6-0.  Blinkova will play No. 7 seed Caroline Garcia of France in the round of 16 Thursday, with Bellis taking on No. 5 seed Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic.  Comments from Bellis can be found in this recap of today's action from the WTA.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Korda, Auger-Aliassime Fall in ATP Debuts; Surprise $25K Qualifying Complete; Texas A&M's Kypson Apologizes for Conduct at Ohio State

Sebastian Korda made his ATP debut last night at the New York Open, the indoor tournament that moved to Long Island this year from Memphis. The 17-year-old Australian boys champion took the first set from from Frances Tiafoe, but couldn't manage another one, falling 4-6, 6-4, 6-2.

Noah Rubin, who like Korda, received a wild card into the New York Open, lost to top seed Kei Nishikori tonight 7-5, 6-3.

Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime, also 17, made his ATP debut today at the ATP event in Rotterdam, and he came even closer to a victory, but fell to Filip Krajinovic of Serbia 6-2, 3-6, 7-5. Auger-Aliassime, who has already won two Challenger titles and is currently ranked 168, was injured early this year and unable to play the Australian Open qualifying. He did take the doubles title at the Budapest Challenger last week with fellow 17-year-old Nicola Kuhn of Spain.

There is no men's event on the USTA Pro Circuit this week, but the women are back at a $25,000 tournament in Surprise Arizona.  Qualifying was completed today, with Sabrina Santamaria, Maria Mateas, Robin Anderson and Salma Ewing the Americans advancing to the main draw.  Mateas will play Claire Liu in the first round on Wednesday. Wild cards went to Ann Li, Ashley Kratzer, Lauren Marker and Francesca Di Lorenzo. Di Lorenzo and Kratzer, the USTA 18s champion, have drawn each other in the first round.  Evgeniya Rodina of Russia is the top seed.

Last Friday night in Columbus, the Ohio State men's tennis team defeated Texas A&M 4-3. A tight match between two of the best teams in the country normally would be talked about for a day or two, but on Saturday, the discussion centered on the behavior of freshman Patrick Kypson, who spit in his hand before shaking hands with opponent JJ Wolf after the match.  (Since I have been in Florida, several comments have been posted here by those who heard about Kypson actions). Kypson did not play against Texas Tech, but until today, the reason for that was conjecture.  Tonight, Texas A&M released the following statements from head coach Steve Denton and Kypson:

College Station, Texas –Texas A&M freshman Patrick Kypson was suspended for Sunday’s match against Texas Tech for his actions at the conclusion of Friday’s match against Ohio State. The Texas A&M coaching staff reached out to the Ohio State staff following the match and Kypson issued apologies to JJ Wolf and the Ohio State team.

Statement from Patrick Kypson, Texas A&M freshman:
“I want to apologize for my actions in my recent match against Ohio State Friday night. What I did was completely unacceptable. I would like to apologize to JJ, the entire Ohio State faculty and staff, my teammates at A&M, the entire A&M program as a whole, and my family. Again, my actions were inexcusable and I will learn from this mistake to become a better player and a better person.

Statement from Steve Denton, Texas A&M men's tennis head coach:

“Sportsmanship and respect are pillars of the sport of tennis and Texas A&M, and Patrick Kypson’s actions at the conclusion of his match at Ohio State were counter to that. He has been appropriately disciplined for his behavior. Patrick’s not only remorseful for what he did, but is acting on that to show that he learned a valuable lesson. We will support him in that effort. We have addressed his actions with him and with our friends at Ohio State.”