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Tuesday, February 12, 2013

North Carolina Takes Over Top Spot in Latest ITA Women's Team Rankings; Men's Indoor Draw; New No. 1s in Individual Rankings; Davis, Williams Win $100K Challengers

Their dramatic win over UCLA Monday not only gave the University of North Carolina women the ITA National Team Indoor Championship, but also vaulted them to the top of the latest rankings released today.

North Carolina, who picked up wins over No. 4 USC, No. 3 Duke and No. 2 UCLA, as well as No. 13 Texas A&M in Charlottesville, took over the top spot from Florida, who fell to No. 2.  These rankings are still done by vote, not by computer.  The women's top 10:

1. North Carolina
2. Florida
4. Duke
5. Georgia
6. USC
7. Stanford
8. Cal
9. Alabama
10. Northwestern

There were no new rankings for the men, who begin play Friday in their National Team Indoor in Seattle.  The draw is out, with Virginia and Southern Cal the top two seeds.

In the latest individual rankings, there is a tie atop the women's singles, with Sabrina Santamaria of USC and Zsofi Susanyi of Cal at No. 1, replacing Sofie Oyen of Florida, who is now ranked No. 9.  Alex Domijan of Virginia, one of three Cavaliers in the Top 8, takes over the No. 1 spot, with former No. 1 Peter Kobelt of Ohio State falling to No. 2.

Men's Top 10

1. Alex Domijan, Virginia
2. Peter Kobelt, Ohio State
3. Matija Pecotic, Princeton
4. Sebastian Fanselow, Pepperdine
5. Mac Styslinger, Virginia
6. Jonas Lutjen, Ole Miss
7. Jarmere Jenkins, Virginia
8. KU Singh, Georgia
9. Henrique Cunha, Duke
10. Emilio Gomez, USC

Women's Top 10

1. Zsofi Susanyi, Cal
1. Sabrina Santamaria, USC
3. Danielle Lao, USC
4. Lauren Embree, Florida
5. Cristina Sanchez-Quintanar, Texas A&M
6. Robin Anderson, UCLA
7. Gina Suarez-Malaguti, North Carolina
8. Lauren Herring, Georgia
9. Sofie Oyen, Florida
10. Krista Hardebeck, Stanford

Complete rankings can be found at the ITA website.

Ben Rothenberg, who writes about tennis for the New York Times, was in Charlottesville on Saturday, and he examined the dearth of women college players in the upper reaches of the WTA rankings in this newspaper article.

Because I was in Charlottesville all weekend, I wasn't able to follow the late stages of the Challenger of Dallas and the Dow Corning Tennis Classic in Midland, Michigan as much as I would have liked, but I do know that two juniors that I followed for many years picked up their first titles at that level.

Former Tennessee Volunteer Rhyne Williams collected his first Challenger title, beating wild card Robby Ginepri 7-5, 6-3 in the final. Williams, who was unseeded, moved to a career-high ATP ranking of 159 with the victory. He and Tennys Sandgren also made the doubles final, but lost to Misha Zverev of Germany and Alex Kuznetsov 6-4, 6-7(4), 10-5.  The Dallas Morning News has more details about the final in this article.

Nineteen-year-old Davis was the top seed in Midland, but she had anything but a smooth road to the final, needing three sets to complete four of her five victories.  In the final against unseeded fellow teen Ajla Tomljanovic of Croatia, Davis needed a third-set tiebreaker to collect her biggest tournament title of her pro career, taking the match 6-3, 2-6, 7-6(2).  The win brought her ranking to 77, which is a career high. For more on Davis' win, see this article from the Bay City Times.

There is no Pro Circuit action in the US this week for men, but there is another $25,000 Event in California for the women, after qualifier Sachie Ishizu of Japan won last week's Rancho Mirage $25K title over top seed Julie Coin. US teens Louisa Chirico and Jan Abaza reached the doubles final before losing to Great Britain's Tara Moore and Melanie South 4-6, 6-2, 12-10.

This week in Rancho Santa Fe, qualifying is now complete, with juniors Jennifer Brady, Viktoriya Tomova and Mayo Hibi among the qualifiers. Christina Makarova and Louisa Chirico received wild cards.

Nicole Gibbs of Stanford, who lost to Lorraine Guillermo of Pepperdine in Sunday's dual match in Malibu, has already advanced to the second round, as the No. 2 seed. The top seed is Irena Pavlovic of France.

There were other notable results in both ITF junior and men's circuits last week, which I will recap on Wednesday.