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Sunday, September 24, 2017

US Girls Win Junior Fed Cup; Sanford and Holt Claim Oracle Masters Championships; Bektas, Shane Claim Pro Circuit Titles

photo by Richard van Loon, tennisfoto.net, ©2017
The US girls on this year's Junior Fed Cup team have had their share of second place finishes in ITF team competitions.  In 2015, Caty McNally and Amanda Anisimova lost in the 14-and-under World Junior Tennis final to Russia and last year fell to Poland in the final, both by 2-1 scores. Whitney Osuigwe was on the 2016 World Junior Tennis team that finished second to Ukraine, again by a 2-1 score. This year, all those memories were pushed aside, with McNally and Osuigwe winning their singles matches to give the top-seeded Americans a 2-0 victory over second-seeded Japan.

At No. 2 singles, McNally avenged her loss last month to Naho Sato, posting a 6-3, 6-2 victory.  Osuigwe, taking the No. 1 position again after Anisimova was unable to play due to illness, fell behind two breaks at 4-1 to start her match with Yuki Naito. She immediately got one break back, but Naito served for the set at 5-4, and when Naito couldn't close it out, Osuigwe capitalized, winning the next seven games to take the first set 7-5 and go up 4-0 in the second. Naito did her best to fight back, breaking Osuigwe serving at 4-0, but Naito lost her serve again to give Osuigwe an opportunity to serve for the match. I counted four match points saved by Naito in that game, but the scoring box on the live stream was often not accurate, so I can't be positive. Naito held for 5-3 and another long game ensued with Osuigwe attempting to serve it out again, with two more match points saved by Naito, but a backhand winner gave Osuigwe her seventh match point and she converted when Naito's forehand return of an Osuigwe first serve found the net for a 7-5, 6-3 win and the title.

This is the fourth Junior Fed Cup title for the United States since the competition's inception in 1985, with all of those coming beginning in 2008, with 2012 and 2014 the other two. For more on the final, with quotes from Osuigwe, McNally and Captain Erik Kortland, see the ITF junior website.

The US boys, seeded third,  fell in the final to top-seeded Czech Republic 2-0.  Jonas Forejtek beat Will Grant 6-4, 7-5 at No. 2 singles and 14-year-old Dalibor Svrcina defeated Govind Nanda 6-2, 6-2 to clinch it.  The Czech team did not drop a match in their five victories. For more on the Junior Davis Cup final, see the ITF junior website.

For more photos from Budapest, see Richard van Loon's album at tennisfoto.net.

The ITA Oracle Masters crowned two new champions today, with North Carolina freshman Alexandra Sanford taking the women's singles and Southern California's Brandon Holt claiming the men's singles title.

Sanford, the No. 6 seed, defeated top seed and defending champion Ena Shibahara of UCLA 5-7, 6-3, 7-6(11), saving five match points in the tiebreaker that decided the two-and-half hour match.

The 18-year-old from Ohio was up 2-0 in all three sets, but with no-ad no lead was safe and in the third set, Shibahara served for the match at 5-4.  The Bruin sophomore didn't earn a match point, with two double faults contributing to Sanford's cause, and two service holds later, they went to a tiebreaker.

Shibahara's first match point came at 6-5, and she had a look at a Sanford second serve, but she missed her return.  Sanford then earned her first match point with a backhand winner set up by a good first serve, but she missed a backhand on the next point to make it 7-7 and waited a long time for a second match point.  Shibahara's second match point was brushed away by Sanford with a good first serve and a forehand winner, but after a Sanford error, Shibahara had a third match point, this time on her serve. She missed a forehand wide to make it 9-9, but went up 10-9 with a forehand forcing a Sanford error. On match point No. 4, Sanford's aggressive down the line forehand forced an error, but she missed a backhand on the next point to give Shibahara her fifth match point at 11-10.  Shibahara's forehand caught the tape and dropped on her side of the net to make it 11-11, and, on the next point, when there was no call on Sanford's shot near the baseline, which Shibahara pleaded with the chair for an out call, Sanford had her second match point.  She didn't get a first serve in, but Shibahara's forehand found the net, ending the dramatic battle in the rookie's favor.

No. 2 seed Holt defeated unseeded Victor Pham of Columbia 6-3, 7-6(2). After a messy first set, with only two holds of serve, both by the Trojan sophomore, the second set was tighter, with ten straight holds sending it to a tiebreaker. Pham had found himself in a similar position in the semifinals against top seed Petros Chrysochos of Wake Forest, and had won the second set tiebreaker and the third set 6-0, but Holt did not allow Pham to get any momentum, going up 6-0 in the tiebreaker and cruising to the title.

Saturday night, Holt and Shibahara claimed the mixed doubles title, beating Samantha Harris of Duke and Johannes Schretter of Baylor 8-1 in the final.

For draws and recaps, see the ITA tournament website.

Emina Bektas won the $80,000 Women's Pro Circuit tournament in Albuquerque New Mexico, defeating Maria Sanchez 6-4, 6-2.  It's the first title for the former Michigan star above the $10,000 level and she can now begin thinking about 2018 Australian Open qualifying, with her ranking moving from 350 to ~234.

Tara Moore of Great Britain and Conny Perrin of Switzerland won the doubles titles, beating top seeds Viktorija Golubic and Amra Sadikovic of Switzerland 6-3, 6-3 in the final.

At the $15,000 Futures in Laguna Niguel California, No. 4 seed Ryan Shane took the title, the third of his career and the first this year, beating unseeded Henry Craig 6-3, 6-3. Shane also won the doubles title on Friday, with Ronnie Schneider.

Ante Pavic of Croatia won the $75,000 ATP Challenger in Columbus Ohio, beating Alexander Ward of Great Britain 6-7(11), 6-4, 6-3. Denis Kudla and Dominik Koepfer of Germany won the doubles title, beating Luke Bambridge of Great Britain and David O'Hare of Ireland 7-6(6), 7-6(3).

At the $25,000 Futures in Canada, former Indiana standout Sam Monette of Canada won both the singles and doubles titles. Monette, seeded No. 8, beat top seed Sam Barry of Ireland 6-3, 7-6(4). Monette and former Harvard star Nicky Hu won the doubles, with the top seeds beating Gary Kushnirovich and France's Yanais Laurent 6-0, 6-2 in the final.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

US Teams to Play for Junior Davis Cup and Junior Fed Cup Titles; Bektas and Sanchez Reach $80K Final; Craig and Shane Meet for Futures Title; ITA Oracle Masters Finals Set

Both US teams trailed 1-0 today in the semifinals of the Junior Fed Cup and Junior Davis competition in a chilly Budapest Hungary, but both claimed No. 1 singles and the deciding doubles point to advance to Sunday's finals.

US Open girls champion Amanda Anisimova did not play today for the top-seeded US girls, so French Open champion Whitney Osuigwe moved into the No. 1 position.  After Caty McNally lost to Leylah Fernandez 6-4, 7-5 at No. 2 singles, Osuigwe had to win to keep US hopes alive, and she defeated Layne Sleeth 6-4, 6-2 to send the match to the deciding doubles. Osuigwe and McNally, who have played together often and reached the Wimbledon girls doubles final this year, beat Sleeth and Fernandez 6-3, 7-5 to send the USA girls into the final for the fourth consecutive year.  They will face No. 2 seed Japan, who reached their first ever Junior Fed Cup final with a 2-1 win over Ukraine. Naho Sato, who beat McNally at the Grade 1 in College Park last month and may face her again on Sunday, won at No. 2 singles, but Marta Kostyuk of Ukraine won at No. 1 singles over Yuki Naito to send it to the deciding doubles. Sato and Naito won over Kostyuk and Alina Tsyurpalevych 6-3, 6-7(7), 10-3. For more on the semifinals, see this article from the ITF website.

The third-seeded US boys were in a similar position to the girls, but they actually were down a set and a break in the deciding doubles match against No. 2 seed Argentina.  Will Grant lost to Juan Cerundolo 7-6(2), 7-5 at No. 2 singles, but Govind Nanda pulled the US even with a 6-1, 6-4 win over Thiago Tirante at No. 1 singles.  Tirante and Alejo Lingua took the first set 6-3 and broke Tyler Zink to open the second set, but Nanda and Zink dominated the second set and closed out a 3-6, 6-2, 10-5 victory.  The US boys, in the final for the first time since 2014, will face No. 1 seed Czech Republic in the final after they defeated No. 4 seed Croatia 2-0, with the doubles not necessary.  For more on the semifinals, see this ITF website article, which features a great photo of Nanda and Zink celebrating their doubles win. Streaming is available for the finals, accessed through the ITF junior website.

Two former college stars have advanced to the final of the $80,000 USTA Women's Pro Circuit event in Albuquerque New Mexico, with former USC star Maria Sanchez and former Michigan star Emina Bektas setting up an all-USA final.  Sanchez defeated Sophie Chang 1-6, 6-3, 6-2 to advance to her first $80K final since 2012. Sanchez won the Albuquerque title that year. Bektas, three years younger that Sanchez at 24, will be making her first appearance in a Pro Circuit final above the $15,000 level after beating Sherazad Reix of France 6-3, 7-6(3). The live streaming that was to be offered for the tournament by the USTA was cancelled due to technical difficulties.

Another all-US final between former collegians is set for the $15,000 Futures in Laguna Niguel, but that was guaranteed, with an all-US semifinal slate.  No. 4 seed Ryan Shane, the 2015 NCAA champion while at Virgina, will face unseeded Henry Craig, who is playing his first full year on tour after graduating from Denver last year.  Shane defeated TCU senior Trevor Johnson 6-4, 6-2, while Craig downed former Virginia star Collin Altamirano 6-4, 6-4. Yesterday, Shane won the doubles title with former North Carolina standout Ronnie Schneider, beating Johnson and Patrick Kawka(BYU) 7-5, 6-2 in the final.

At the $75,000 ATP Columbus Challenger, Dennis Novikov, the last American and last seed remaining was eliminated in the semifinals, with the No. 7 seed falling to Alexander Ward of Great Britain 6-1, 6-3. Ward will play alternate Ante Pavic of Croatia in the final, after Pavic beat Frank Dancevic of Canada 6-3, 7-5. Denis Kudla and former Tulane star Dominik Koepfer of Germany have advanced to the doubles final against Luke Bambridge of Great Britain and former Memphis standout David O'Hare of Ireland.

At the $25,000 women's tournament in Lubbock Texas, unseeded Alisa Kleybanova of Russia defeated doubles partner Vicky Duval, the No. 3 seed, 6-3, 6-0 to win the singles title.


The finals are set at the ITA Oracle Masters in Malibu, with Ena Shibahara of UCLA going for her second consecutive title in the women's tournament. The top seed defeated unseeded Lily Miyazaki of Oklahoma 7-6(6), 6-7(7), 6-2 to advance to the final, where she'll meet No. 6 seed Alexandra Sanford. The North Carolina freshman took out home favorite Mayar Ahmed of Pepperdine 6-3, 4-6, 6-4.

The men's final will feature No. 2 seed Brandon Holt of Southern Cal against unseeded Victor Pham of Columbia. Holt defeated Johannes Schretter of Baylor 7-6(1), 6-0 and Pham surprised top seed Petros Chrysochos of Wake Forest 2-6, 7-6(5), 6-0.

Holt and Shibahara will play the mixed doubles final this evening, against Schretter and Samantha Harris of Duke.

Links to the draws, schedule and live streams are available at the ITA tournament page.

Women's semifinals:
Ena Shibahara(UCLA)[1] def. Lily Miyazaki(OU) 7-6(6), 6-7(7), 6-2
Alexandra Sanford(UNC)[6] def. Mayar Ahmed(PEPP) 6-3, 4-6, 6-4

Men's semifinals:
Victor Pham(COL) def. Petros Chrysochos(WF)[1] 2-6, 7-6(5), 6-0
Brandon Holt(USC)[2] def. Johannes Schretter(BAY)[3] 7-6(1), 6-0

Friday, September 22, 2017

Top Seeds Shibahara and Chrysochos Reach Semifinals at ITA Oracle Masters


Defending champion Ena Shibahara of UCLA reached the semifinals of the ITA Oracle Masters with two victories today in Malibu.  The top seed defeated No. 8 seed Sara Daavettila of North Carolina 6-2, 4-6, 6-4 in the quarterfinals and also advanced to the mixed doubles semifinals with Brandon Holt of USC.

Shibahara will face unseeded Lily Miyazaki of Oklahoma in Saturday's semifinals.  The other semifinal features No. 6 seed Alexandra Sanford, the North Carolina freshman, against unseeded Mayar Ahmed of Pepperdine.

Three of the top four seeds have advanced to the men's semifinals, with No. 4 seed Michael Geerts of Arizona State the only one failing to advance out of the quarterfinals.  Top seed Petros Chrysochos of Wake Forest will face unseeded Victor Pham of Columbia in the top half of the draw, with No. 2 seed Brandon Holt of USC meeting No. 3 seed Johannes Schretter of Baylor.  Pham beat two seeded players today, No. 5 Felipe Sarrasgue of Elon and Geerts.

Complete results from Friday singles results:

Women’s second round:
Ena Shibahara(UCLA)[1] def. Laura Gulbe(PEP) 6-4, 6-2
Sara Daavetilla(UNC)[8] def. Andrea Lazaro(FIU) 0-6, 6-3, 6-3
Jessica Livanu(SJU) def. Kaitlyn McCarthy(DUKE)[4] 6-1, 7-5
Lily Miyazaki(OU) def. Jessica Failla(PEPP)[5] 3-6, 6-4, 3-0 ret.
Samantha Harris(DUKE)[3] def. Anna Sanford(OSU) 6-4, 7-5
Alexandra Sanford(UNC)[6] def. Eva Voracek(LMU) 6-4, 6-4
Mayar Ahmed(PEPP) def. Veronica Miroshnichenko(LMU)[7] 6-2, 6-1
Celia Ruiz(ECU) def. Lauren Proctor(WIN)[2] 6-4, 7-6(3)

Men’s second round:
Petros Chrysochos(WF)[1] def. Adam Moundir(ODU) 6-7(6) 6-2, 6-3
Billy Griffith(CAL)[8] def. Vinny Gillespie(DRK) 7-6(3), 6-4
Michael Geerts(ASU)[4] def. William Bushamuka 6-4, 6-2
Victor Pham(COL) def. Felipe Sarrasgue(ELON)[5] 6-4, 6-0
Johannes Schretter(BAY)[3] def. Benjamin Hannestad(ASU) 6-3, 6-0
Harrison Scott(TEX)[6] def. Jack Malloy(CAL) 3-6, 6-4, 6-4
Michail Pervolarkais(PORT) def. Thibault Cancel(BAMA)[7] 6-4, 6-4
Brandon Holt(USC)[2] def. Dennis Uspensky(PEPP) 6-4, 4-6, 6-3

Women’s quarterfinals:
Ena Shibahara(UCLA)[1] def. Sara Daavettila[8] 6-2, 4-6, 6-4
Lily Miyazaki(OU) def. Jessica Livianu(SJU) 6-4, 6-1
Alexandra Sanford(UNC)[6] def. Samantha Harris(DUKE)[3] 6-3, 6-3
Mayar Ahmed(PEPP) def. Celia Ruiz(ECU) 6-2, 6-3

Men’s quarterfinals:
Petros Chrysochos(WF)[1] def. Billy Griffith(CAL)[8] 6-4, 6-2
Victor Pham(COL) def. Michael Geerts(ASU)[4] 7-6(8), 6-4
Johannes Schretter(BAY)[3] def. Harrison Scott(TEX)[6], 6-1, 6-2
Brandon Holt(USC)[2] def. Michail Pervolarkais(PORT) 6-4, 6-0

Draws, Saturday's schedule and links to live scoring and live streaming are available at the ITA tournament page.  The mixed doubles semifinals have yet to be played tonight.

US Teams Reach Semifinals of Junior Davis Cup and Junior Fed Cup; Hilderbrand, Subhash Win ITF Grade 2 Titles in Canada; Duval Reaches Lubbock $25K Final, Seven Americans Advance to Semis in Laguna Niguel and Albuquerque

A long day ended in Budapest with both teams from the United States moving into Saturday's semifinals at the ITF's Junior Davis Cup and Junior Fed Cup competitions.

Osuigwe and McNally at Wimbledon 2017
The top-seeded US girls defeated Italy 2-1, with the point lost by US Open girls champion Amanda Anisimova at No. 1 singles. Elisabetta Cocciaretto defeated Anisimova 6-2, 6-3, but Caty McNally and Whitney Osuigwe won the tiebreaking doubles match from Cocciaretto and Federica Rossi 6-0, 7-6(4) to give the US the win and the top spot in round robin Group A.  The US will face unseeded Canada in the semifinals, who beat Hungary 2-1 to finish tied with Russia, the No. 3 seed, at the top spot in Group B. But because it was a two-way tie at the top, head-to-head is the first tiebreaker and Canada had beaten Russia 2-1 in the previous round, so they advance, despite having won only 11 sets, while losing 13.  Russia had won 16 and lost 7. Maybe it's worth mentioning only because of hindsight, but when I saw that Canada wasn't seeded, I was surprised; they have a good team, and the US will need to play well to beat them Saturday.  The other semifinal features No. 2 Japan and No. 4 Ukraine, both of whom were 3-0 in their groups.

Like the Canadian girls, the third-seeded US boys had to advance via the tiebreak protocol, with Hungary, Australia[8] and the US all 2-1. With three teams, the first tiebreaker is matches won, which for the US was 7, after their 3-0 shutout of Australia today. Hungary won 6 and Australia won 5, so the US advances.  They will play No. 2 seed Argentina, while the other semifinal features No. 1 seed Czech Republic and No. 4 seed Croatia. Croatia also advanced via a tiebreaker with 7 matches won, while Taiwan and Brazil[6] had 6 and 5.

All scores can be found at the tournament website.

The ITF Grade 2 in Canada finished today, with top-seeded Americans Trey Hilderbrand and Natasha Subhash taking the titles.  Hilderbrand defeated unseeded Vikash Singh of India 6-2, 6-4, while Subhash beat No. 4 seed Elli Mandlik 7-5, 6-1 in an all-US final.  Subhash also won the doubles title, with Lea Ma.  The top seeds defeated unseeded Ariana Arseneault of Canada and McCartney Kessler 6-4, 6-1 in the final. The US got a sweep of all the titles this week, with unseeded Tomas Kopczynski and Mark Mandlik (Elli's twin brother) beating unseeded Stefan Leustian and Emilio Nava 6-7(4), 7-6(4), 11-9 in another all-US final.

Vicky Duval, who is back competing regularly after her Hodgkin's Lymphoma and other injury and health issues, is in her first Pro Circuit final since 2014 at the $25,000 tournament in Lubbock Texas.  The third-seeded Duval defeated top seed Harriet Dart of Great Britain 7-6(5), 6-2 and will face her doubles partner and fellow Hodgkin's Lymphoma survivor Alisa Kleybanova of Russia in the final. The unseeded Kleybanova defeated USC senior Gabby Smith, a qualifier, 6-4, 6-3.  Duval and Kleybanova won the doubles title this afternoon, beating No. 2 seeds Karman Thandi of India and Ana Veselinovic of Montenegro 2-6, 6-4 10-8.

The $80,000 women's event in Albuquerque New Mexico has its semifinal on Saturday, with no seeds remaining after former University of Michigan star Emina Bektas defeated No. 8 seed Sesil Karatantcheva of Bulgaria 6-4, 6-7(4), 6-4.  Bektas will face Sherazad Reix of France in the bottom half semifinal. The top half semifinal is all-US, with Maria Sanchez playing Sophie Chang.  Sanchez beat wild card Sanaz Marand 6-1, 7-6(3) and Chang defeated Jovana Jaksic of Serbia 6-3, 6-3.

The $75,000 ATP Columbus Challenger has just one American in the semifinals, with Dennis Novikov[7] beating top seed Quentin Halys of France 6-1, 2-6, 6-4 to advance. He will face unseeded Alexander Ward of Great Britain, who beat Denis Kudla[4] 3-6, 6-4, 6-2.  The other semifinal features Frank Dancevic of Canada and alternate Ante Pavic of Croatia.

At the $15,000 Futures in Laguna Niguel California, all four semifinalist are current or former collegians from the United States. TCU senior Trevor Johnson, a qualifier, had never earned an ATP point before this week, but today he beat top seed Takanyi Garanganga of Zimbabwe 6-4, 6-3 to advance to Saturday's semifinals, where he'll play No. 4 seed Ryan Shane(Virginia). Shane defeated No. 8 seed Jumpei Yamasaki of Japan 6-3, 6-2.  The other semifinal will feature Colin Altamirano, who will not be returning to Virginia for his senior year, against Henry Craig(Denver).  Altamirano downed wild card Tom Fawcett(Stanford) 6-1, 6-2, while Craig beat Hunter Callahan(Ohio State) 6-3, 1-6, 6-3.

The ITA Oracle Masters has two rounds of singles scheduled today, so I'll be posting those results separately much later this evening.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

More Rain in Budapest Puts Junior Davis/Fed Cup Behind Schedule; Oracle Masters First Round Complete; Robbye Poole Hired as Women's Assistant at Alma Mater Ole Miss

Rain continued at the Junior Fed Cup and Junior Davis Cup competitions in Budapest, with several matches sent indoors, including the deciding doubles rubber of the third-seeded US boys and unseeded Hungary. Hungary won that, with Will Grant and Govind Nanda losing to Domink Buzonics and Peter Makk 4-6, 7-5, 10-8. The US falls to 1-1 and will face No. 8 seed Australia in Friday's round 3. If they beat Australia and Hungary beats Morocco, all three teams will be 2-1 and the tiebreaker protocol will come into play.   The US girls finished their second round match on Wednesday and did not take the court today. They will face No. 6 seed Italy, with a win assuring they finish at the top of the round robin group.

With this loss of a day's play, I don't see how two teams from each round robin group can advance, as was the original plan, which is new this year.  If the semifinals are to be played Saturday and the finals Sunday, the schedule no longer has a day for the quarterfinal round, and playing two ties on Friday or Saturday (or Sunday) seems unwise when there is no precedent for doing so.

See the tournament website for scores, but don't go strictly by the dates, as they no longer are neatly divided by days/rounds.

The first round of singles is complete at the ITA Oracle Masters in Malibu, with no upsets of note.  The results are below.  Bobby Knight of College Tennis Today has the UTR numbers for all players posted and he notes that only one player with a higher UTR,  Marianna Petrei of Idaho, lost. She fell to Eastern Carolina's Celia Ruiz.

Women's singles first round:
Ena Shibahara(UCLA)[1] def. Jennifer Lu(QUIN) 6-1, 6-1
Laure Gulbe(PEPP) def. Julia O’Loughlin(DEN) 6-3, 6-2
Sara Daavetilla(UNC)[8] def. Lucile Pothier(ACU) 4-6, 7-5, 6-0
Andrea Lazaro(FIU) def. Lidia Yanes Garcia(APU) 6-0, 6-2
Kaitlyn McCarthy(DUKE)[4] def. Margita Sunjic(NKU) 6-1, 6-0
Jessica Livianu(SJU) def. Madara Straume(UNCW) 6-0, 6-4
Jessica Failla(PEPP)[5] def. Michelle Liu(SEA) 6-4, 6-1
Lily Miyazaki(OU) def. Kristina Mathis(DART) 6-2, 6-4
Samantha Harris(DUKE)[3]def. Tyler Smith(JACK) 6-3, 6-2
Anna Sanford(OSU) def. Claudia Herrero Garcis(NEV) 6-2, 6-1
Alexandra Sanford(UNC)[6] def. Anna Grigoryan(LIU) 6-1, 6-1
Eva Maria Voracek(LMU) def. Viktoriya Dzyuba(LIPS) 6-2, 6-0
Veronica Miroshnichenko(LME)[7] def. Elizabeth Tsvetkov(STON) 2-6, 6-1, 6-4
Mayar Ahmed(PEPP) def. Alexandria Stiteler(USA) 6-3, 6-2
Celia Ruiz(ECU) def. Marianna Petrei(IDA). 6-3, 6-2
Lauren Proctor(WIN)[2] def. Remi Ramos(BU) 3-6, 6-2, 6-2

Men's singles first round:
Petros Chrysochos(WF)[1] def. Matt Kuhar(BRY) 6-2, 7-5
Adam Moundir(ODU) def. Simon Freund(UCSB) 7-6(4), 6-4
Billy Griffith(CAL)[8] def. Tanner Smith(USC) 6-2, 6-2
Vinny Gillespie(DRK) def. Josh Sheehy(ACU) 7-6(5), 7-6(5)
Michael Geerts(ASU)[4] def. Razvan Grigorescu(UNO) 6-1, 6-4
William Bushamuka(UK) def. Alexandr Cozbinov(UNLV) 6-2, 6-3
Felipe Sarrasague(ELON)[5] def. Luka Sucevic(SJU) 6-1, 6-7(1), 2-0 ret.
Victor Pham(COL) def. Christofer Goncalves(NMSU) 7-5, 7-6(4)
Johannes Schretter(BAY)[3] def. Michael Nguyen(ARMY) 6-2, 6-0
Benjamin Hannestad(ASU) def. Matic Spec(MINN) 7-5, 7-5
Harrison Scott(TEX)[6] def. Tim Handel(NAU) 5-7, 6-1, 6-1
Jack Malloy(CAL) def. Connor Thompson(UNCG) 6-3, 6-4
Thibault Cancel(BAMA)[7] def. Kennosuke Nouchi(WMU) 6-2, 7-5
Michail Pervolarkais(PORT) def. Eduard Mena(TTU) 1-6, 7-5, 6-1
Dennis Uspensky(PEPP) def. Scott Webster(APST) 6-4, 2-6, 6-1
Brandon Holt(USC)[2] def. Havier Restrepo(MAR) 6-2, 7-6(4)


Two rounds of mixed doubles were completed today. Results and draws can be found, along with links to live scoring and live streaming, at the ITA's tournament page.

Poole hitting with Serena Williams at 2016 Wimbledon 
Former Mississippi All-American Robbye Poole is returning to Ole Miss as the women's assistant coach, replacing associate head coach Jason Ontog, who, according to the release, is heading to the USTA.  Poole has been working as a hitting partner for Serena Williams the past two and a half years, but obviously has had some free time the last few months during Williams' pregnancy.  The release has comments on Poole from both Williams' coach Patrick Mouratoglou and John Isner, whose collegiate career at Georgia overlapped Poole's at Ole Miss.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Rain Continues at Junior Fed Cup and Junior Davis Cup, but Top-Seeded US Girls Post Second Win; Oracle Masters Begins Thursday; Six Americans Reach Semifinals at ITF Grade 2 in Canada; Making Sense of Cheating in Junior Tennis

Rain continued to pose a problem for the Junior Davis Cup and Junior Fed Cup competition in Budapest, but the top-seeded US girls have won their second match, beating Uruguay 3-0 to move into first place in Group A of the round robin competition. With No. 6 seed Italy losing to Belarus 2-1 in their second match, that gives the US the only 2-0 record in the group and they will finish first with a win Thursday over Italy. Today, Caty McNally and Whitney Osuigwe won singles matches, with Amanda Anisimova and McNally partnering for the doubles win.

Not all the second round matches are complete, but No. 2 seed Japan and No. 4 seed Ukraine did earn victories to go 2-0. No. 3 seed Russia trails unseeded Canada 1-0.

The third-seeded US boys will need to win the doubles point to get their second win, with Will Grant winning at No. 2 singles, but Govind Nanda failing at No. 1 singles. Grant and Nanda will play the doubles decider.

For scores and standings, see the tournament webpage.

The third annual Oracle Masters begins Thursday in Malibu, with 32-player fields. Invitations were sent to the top players in each conference, and in a new twist, players are seeded from 1-32.  No. 1 for the women is defending champion Ena Shibahara of UCLA, with Lauren Proctor of Winthrop the No. 2 seed.  The men's top seed is Petros Chrysochos of Wake Forest, with USC's Brandon Holt the No. 2 seed. Mixed doubles is also part of the tournament, with teams made up from players from the same conference, if possible. Shibahara and Holt are the No. 1 seeds.

For draws and links to live scoring and live video, see the ITA's tournament page.

The semifinals are set for the ITF Grade 2 in Canada, with the girls final four consisting entirely of Americans. Top seed Natasha Subhash will face No. 3 seed Lea Ma, her doubles partner, in the top half, with No. 4 seed Elli Mandlik playing unseeded Addison Guevara in the the bottom half. Guevara, a 16-year-old from Texas, beat No. 2 seed Dalayna Hewitt 4-6, 7-6(6), 6-2.

Top seed Trey Hilderbrand will face unseeded Ronan Jachuck in the all-US semfinal, with the other semifinal featuring Canadian wild card Nicaise Muamba and unseeded Vikash Singh of India, who beat No. 3 seed Boris Kozlov in the second round.

Kelyn Soong of the Washington Post explores the problem of cheating in junior tennis in this article, with comments from former Florida Gator Spencer Liang, junior Reilly Tran, Brian Boland and Lew Brewer of the USTA and many others.