Black, Paul Win ITF Grade 4 Championships in Plantation; Fratangelo, Muhammad Take Pro Circuit Titles; Taylor Townsend Update
Tommy Paul and Tornado Alicia Black gave themselves early birthday presents last week--their first ITF tournament titles.
The top-seeded Black, who turned 15 yesterday, defeated unseeded Katerina Stewart 6-1, 3-6, 6-0 in Saturday's final at the Plantation Grade 4 tournament, avenging her loss to Stewart in the 2011 Junior Orange Bowl 14s final.
Fifth seed Paul, who will be 16 on Friday, defeated unseeded Stephen Watson 6-2, 6-0 in the boys final. No. 7 seeds Kevin Major and Justin Roberts of the Bahamas won the doubles championship, beating No. 4 seeds Alejandro Tabilo of Canada and Lamar Remy of the US 6-4, 3-6, 10-7. The girls doubles title went to the unseeded team of Sophie Chang and Mercedes Hammond, who beat Alexa Bortles and Chloe Ouellet-Pizer, also unseeded, 6-4, 7-5.
Complete draws can be found at the tournament page at usta.com.
The third of the three clay court Grade 4s in Florida is this week in Delray Beach. Toshiki Matsuya of Japan and Paul are the top two seeds in the boys draw. Dasha Ivanova and Black are the top two seeds in the girls draw. See the TennisLink site for the complete draws.
At last week's ITF Grade 1 in Morocco, Floridian Johnnise Renaud, the No. 3 seed, reached the final, where she lost to No. 2 seed Marie Bouzkova of the Czech Republic 6-1, 6-4. That showing moves Renaud up to 52 in the ITF junior rankings, which means she is close to direct acceptance into the Wimbledon Juniors.
On the US Pro Circuit, Bjorn Fratangelo, who has made four Futures finals this year, won his second title at the $10,000 event in Orange Park, Florida. Last year at the same tournament, the unseeded Fratangelo lost in the first round to top seed Gerald Melzer of Austria 6-2, 6-2; this year, as the No. 4 seed, the 19-year-old from Pittsburgh beat Melzer, again the top seed, 7-5, 6-3 in the final. This week the men are in Tampa for another $10,000, with Fratangelo, who made the final there last year, the No. 5 seed.
The women were at a $25,000 event in Raleigh, with Asia Muhammad taking both the singles and doubles titles. Muhammad, who was unseeded, beat Chalena Scholl, also unseeded, 6-2, 6-2 in the singles final, then teamed with Allie Will to take the doubles too. Muhammad and Will, the top seeds, defeated No. 2 seed Jessica Moore and Sally Peers of Australia 6-3, 6-3 in the final.
The women are in Landisville Pennsylvania this week for a $10,000 tournament. Qualifying will be completed on Tuesday. See draws for both tournaments at the Pro Circuit page at usta.com.
Last year at this time, Daniel Nguyen was setting out to help Southern California win its fourth straight NCAA title. This year, as USC goes for a record fifth in a row, Nguyen has gone on a winning streak of his own, taking two consecutive $15,000 singles titles in Korea. Last week he defeated 16-year-old Hyeon Chung of Korea 4-6, 7-5, 6-4. At the $10,000 Futures in Mexico, former Texas Longhorn Miguel-Angel Reyes-Varela of Mexico won the singles title, his first on the ITF men's circuit, while former UCLA Bruin Nick Meister and future USC Trojan Connor Farren took the doubles title.
Taylor Townsend was in New Haven Connecticut today for a community service event in conjunction with August's New Haven Open, and several area newspapers covered the event and interviewed her. In this article from the New Haven Register, Townsend talks about her new coach, fitness regime and diet. Townsend, who hasn't played since the Family Circle Cup early last month, is heading to Europe, where she's apparently received a qualifying wild card into the WTA Brussels Open. She is also scheduled to play the Junior Championships at Roland Garros next month.
Allie Kiick, who was on the original acceptance list for the French juniors, has withdrawn.