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Sunday, September 23, 2012

Pasha Takes Napa Shootout; Unseeded Sanchez Captures Albuquerque $75K; Kosakowski Wins Second Straight Futures; Sandgren Sweeps Canada Futures Titles

Nathan Pasha and Soren Hess-Olesen
Photo Credit: Jonathan Herre / For the USTA

Nathan Pasha, a sophomore at the University of Georgia, won the Audi Napa Valley Classic Playbrave Shootout over Soren Hess-Olesen of Texas 16-14 to collect the Futures Pro Circuit wild card that goes to the winner of the event. After eight players--Pasha, Hess-Olesen, Lloyd Glasspool of Texas, Ben Wagland of Georgia, Riki McLachlan of Cal, Mads Engsted of Cal, Chris Konigsfeldt of Cal and Joe DiGiulio of the USTA--won their round robin groups earlier in the day, the 10-point tiebreakers were played to decide an overall winner. Pasha, who went undefeated in singles over the weekend, was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player.  For Steve Pratt's complete recap of the exciting ending, click here.

Today on the Pro Circuit, former USC All-American Maria Sanchez won her second title of the year, defeating No. 3 seed Lauren Davis 6-1, 6-1 to claim the singles title at the $75,000 Women's tournament in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  Sanchez, who was unseeded, beat No. 5 seed Irina Falconi in the quarterfinals and No. 2 seed Michelle Larcher de Brito of Portugal in the semifinals, both in straight sets, before breezing past Davis, who had two very long battles with Jessica Pegula and Alison Riske in her previous two matches.  Sanchez, who won the $50,000 Sacramento Challenger, also reached the doubles final with Falconi, but the top seeds fell to No. 4 seeds  Asia Muhammad and Yasmin Schnack  6-2, 1-6, 12-10.

In another all-American final today, Dan Kosakowski won his second straight Futures title, defeating No. 7 seed and former Texas A&M All-American Jeff Dadamo 6-4, 7-5 at the $10,000 event in Costa Mesa, California. The former UCLA Bruin, seeded second, has now won ten matches in a row on the Pro Circuit after losing in the final round of qualifying at the US Open in August.

In the doubles final, two recent Pac-12 rivals, All-Americans Ryan Thacher of Stanford and Nick Meister of UCLA combined to defeat two former NCAA champions, 2009 singles champ Devin Britton (Ole Miss) and Dadamo (2011 doubles champion with Austin Krajicek.) Thacher and Meister, seeded No. 3, beat the top seeds  4-6, 7-6(6), 10-7.

Tennys Sandgren, a contemporary of all the above players and who left the University of Tennessee after his sophomore year in 2011, won both titles at the $15,000 Futures tournament in Canada this weekend.  Sandgren, the No. 2 seed, beat top seed Peter Polansky of Canada 6-4, 6-3 in the final. It is Sandgren's fourth singles title of the year on the Futures circuit.  Sandgren also got the better of Polansky in the doubles final. Sandgren and Chase Buchanan, the 2012 NCAA doubles champion from Ohio State, were seeded No. 2 and they defeated Polansky and his partner Carsten Ball of Australia, the top seeds, 6-2, 4-6, 10-7. It is Sandgren's fourth doubles title of the year as well, the first with Buchanan.

This coming week the women are at the $50,000 Party Rock Open in Las Vegas and a $10,000 event in Amelia Island, with qualifying now underway in both tournaments.

The men are at another $10,000 tournament, this one in Irvine, California with qualifying nearing completion there.