McHale, Bogomolov Win Kennedy Funding; Hampton Wins 2nd Straight 50K Challenger; Williams Falls in Pittburgh Final
It's been quite a weekend for 18-year-old Christina McHale. After beating Melanie Oudin yesterday in the semifinals of the Kennedy Funding Invitational in New York on Saturday, McHale downed Sony Ericsson champion Victoria Azarenka of Belarus 6-4, 7-5 this afternoon to win the charity exhibition. McHale lost in the first round of the $50,000 Grapevine Pro Circuit event in Dallas this week, and the Kennedy Funding doesn't help with WTA points, but it has to do a world of good for her confidence. The question of whether she'll turn pro (which she hadn't as of mid-May) is getting to be more and more urgent; if she turned down the prize money at the Kennedy Funding, it could have been $40,000 uncollected, if the women receive the same as the men. Alex Bogomolov, the 2001 Kalamazoo 18s champion and 1998 16s champion, won the men's event, defeating Michael Russell, the 1994 Kalamazoo 16s champion, 7-6(2), 3-6, 6-4. For more on that match, and on McHale's win over Oudin, see this Journal News article. For more on McHale and her preparations for this year's US Open, see this article from northjersey.com.
In Grapevine, Texas today, Jamie Hampton won her second consecutive $50,000 women's Pro Circuit event, defeating 18-year-old Kurumi Nara of Japan, the No. 3 seed, 6-3, 6-4. Hampton, a 20-year-old from Alabama, who spend most of 2009 recovering from injury, lost her only set of the tournament in the opening round. With her WTA ranking of 188, Hampton has already assured herself of a spot in the US Open qualifying draw. With this win, after taking the Boston 50K title last week, Hampton is certainly on the short list for a US Open main draw wild card, along with McHale, Sloane Stephens and Alison Riske. There are likely just four available, with the French and Australian reciprocals, Junior National and NCAA champion likely receiving the other four.
Megan Moulton-Levy, the former William and Mary star, and Lindsay Lee-Waters won the doubles in Texas, avenging their Boston finals loss to Kim Couts and Tetiana Luzhanska 6-2, 7-5. Moulton-Levy and Lee-Waters, the top seeds in Texas, also won the doubles championship at the $50,000 event in Carson in May. Thanks to Brandon L'Heureux for the above photo of Moulton-Levy and Lee-Waters from today's final.
For complete draws, see the Pro Circuit page at usta.com.
Today in Pittsburgh, Tennessee sophomore Rhyne Williams could not duplicate his 2007 win at the same $10,000 Futures tournament, losing to No. 3 seed Adam El Mihdawy 6-3, 7-6(6) in the final. But Williams and Tennys Sandgren, also a member of the team that reached the 2010 NCAA finals, won the doubles title, beating top seeds Vasek Pospisil of Canada and Greg Ouellette of Florida 3-6, 6-3, 11-9. The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review had this story about the men's semifinals and the final of the ITA Summer Circuit women's event between Kara Cecil and Ronit Yurovsky. Complete draws can be found at the ATP website.