Catching Up: Other Clay Champions; Cox Turns Pro; Strode, Lumpkin Win on Pro Circuit; Mayotte Hired by USTA
I'm back in Kalamazoo now, and I anticipate the next two weeks will be full of pre-Nationals posts, starting, I hope, with the list of wild cards tomorrow. But when I was in Memphis, I didn't have time to follow the other Clay Court championships, so today is a good day to congratulate the winners:
Boys 12s--Tommy Paul
Girls 12s--Anastasia Nefedova
Boys 14s--Roy Lederman
Girls 14s--Kelsey Laurente
Boys 16s--Bjorn Fratangelo
Girls 16s--Kyle McPhillips
Boys 18s--Jack Sock
Girls 18s--Krista Hardebeck
The USTA release, including all the doubles champions, is available here. The Sun-Sentinel spoke with Laurente about her victory, and the Naples Daily News talked with Fratangelo after his title. And the Hampton Roads Daily Press had a very thorough wrap of the McPhillips win in Virginia Beach in Sonny Dearth's blog. Also, from the Memphis Flyer is this story, entitled "Why You're Not Great" about Germantown, Tenn.'s Catherine Harrison, who reached the round of 32 at the girls 18s Clay Courts.
IMG announced today that Jordan Cox will be represented by the agency as he pursues a professional tennis career. Cox, who qualified for the main draw this week in the Godfrey, Ill. Futures, has an intriguing first round contest with Austin Krajicek, a meeting between the two reigning Kalamazoo champions.
In last week's Pro Circuit events, unseeded Blake Strode, the 2009 NCAA semifinalist who just graduated from Arkansas, won his first professional title at the $10,000 Joplin, Mo. tournament. Strode beat recent Tulsa grad Arnau Brugues in the final 6-1, 6-3. The only set Strode lost was to top seed Michael McClune in the quarterfinals. With this win and his appearance in the final two weeks ago in Pittsburgh, Strode is making a strong case for a U.S. Open qualifying wild card. In the women's $10,000 event in Evansville, Ind., the winner was Liz Lumpkin, who played No. 5 singles for UCLA in their 2008 championship season. It was Lumpkin's first Pro Circuit title, in fact her first final in singles; she has been in three doubles finals. Fourteen-year-old Sachia Vickery qualified and reached the semifinals of her first professional event. This week the women are in St. Joseph, Mo., where CoCo Vandeweghe is the top seed. For more, see the usta.com Pro Circuit page.
The USTA announced today that Tim Mayotte will join its Player Development program as a National Coach. Mayotte, the 1981 NCAA champion while at Stanford, will work out of the USTA's Boca Raton Training Center.