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Sunday, February 5, 2012

Draws for Women's ITA Indoor Released; Top Teams Stay Undefeated

The ITA Women's Team Indoor, which I will be covering live for the first time since 2008, begins on Friday, and the draw has been released. The seeds are: 1)Duke 2)UCLA 3)Baylor 4)Georgia 5)California 6)North Carolina 7)Virginia and 8)Michigan. The nation's two top-ranked teams, Florida and Stanford, have opted not to play in Charlottesville this year, and instead will play a dual match in Palo Alto next weekend. They will be missed, of course, but like a tournament without Djokovic and Nadal, there will still be plenty of great tennis and some undoubted surprises. Although Ole Miss, the lowest-ranked team, plays No. 1 Duke, that is just a coincidence, as it appears the eight unseeded teams were simply drawn at random for the first round, not paired by ranking. No. 13 Georgia Tech gets No. 2 UCLA, for example, even though, if paired by rankings, the Bruins would play No. 17 Tennessee. Speaking of the Vols, they showed they could be a dark horse in Charlottesville, beating No. 10 Michigan today 5-2. Although she lost today, Natalie Pluskota's return to the top of the lineup will provide a big boost to Tennessee.

Florida played No. 5 Baylor yesterday in Waco and it was a heck of a match, with the Gators winning 5-2. Five of the six singles matches went to a third set, and Florida was by no means assured of a victory until late in the match. Stanford hasn't yet met a top team, and Kristie Ahn has not yet returned to the lineup, so there are still questions surrounding the Cardinal. They beat Oregon 6-1 on Saturday.

Duke also had a tough test yesterday against No. 12 Northwestern, with the 6-0 score a bit deceiving.

On the men's side this weekend, the top 3 teams all passed their Top 15 tests with flying colors. No. 1 USC beat No. 6 Stanford and No. 13 Cal; No. 2 Virginia beat No. 15 Texas, No. 5 Florida and No. 11 Texas A&M; and No. 3 Ohio State beat No. 13 Pepperdine. The good news for the Men's Team Indoor is that all these teams will be competing for the title February 17-21, which Virginia has won four consecutive years.

The qualifying is underway for the $100K Dow Corning Tennis Classic in Midland and the $100K YP Challenger of Dallas. In Midland, Taylor Townsend, who was on the entry list for the qualifying, didn't sign in, according the tournament director. See the tournament website for results.

I'm pleased to see that Dallas will again provide free live streaming of the matches. The main draw was posted last night, and Rhyne Williams and Brian Baker received wild cards, along with Sam Querrey and Jack Sock. Ryan Sweeting is the top seed.

Williams lost today in the finals of the $10,000 Futures in Palm Coast, Florida, with Jason Kubler of Australia taking the championship 6-2, 6-3.

Julia Boserup defeated Lauren Davis 6-0, 6-3 to win the $25,000 Pro Circuit event in Rancho Santa Fe, California. There is another $25,000 tournament this week for the women, the Childhelp Desert Classic in Rancho Mirage, California, and qualifying is underway for that.


Go Kudla said...

I feel like we give Rhyne WIlliams and Jack Sock and so much recently so much publicity on this blog with out giving Denis Kudla some love.....I just think fans of his would like to know when he plays sometimes....especially that hes now top 215 in the world now!!!! No offense at all Collette just would be nice sometimes cause we all do forget even his most dedicated followers