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Thursday, May 9, 2013

My Interview with Marc Lucero about RAMP Academy; Black vs. Shishkina in Plantation ITF Grade 4 Semis; Pro Circuit Update

When the USTA downsized at the Carson facility last fall, there was some fear the Home Depot Center would become a ghost town, but fortunately a private academy has taken up the slack, with former USTA coaches Marc Lucero, Patrick Nagle and Andrew Laing, along with Rick Buchta, forming the RAMP Tennis Academy. Last month I spoke with Lucero about their new venture, which resulted in this question and answer session at the Tennis Recruiting Network.

On the other side of the country, former top ATP player Johann Kriek has a relatively new academy in Charlotte, North Carolina, and he spoke about his career and development philosophy in this interview posted at USA Today.



The ITF Grade 4 tournament in Plantation saw top boys seed Henrik Wiersholm lose to Jake DeVine in the second round, but top girls seed Tornado Black is tearing through the draw. Black, who will be 15 in a few days, has lost only eight games in her four wins, and in today's quarterfinal against CiCi Bellis, Black won 6-2, 6-0.  She will take on doubles partner and No. 3 seed Maria Shishkina in Friday's semifinal, a rare chance to see the two prodigies face off.  Way back in 2009, Shishkina won the Eddie Herr 12s with a 6-1, 6-0 win over Black in the final; the next (and last time) they met, in 2010, Black beat Shishkina 6-3, 4-6, 7-6(4) in the final of the 12s Clay Courts.

The other girls semifinal features No. 12 seed Chloe Ouelett-Pizer against unseeded, but very dangerous, Katerina Stewart. Stewart has been nearly as impressive as Black, losing just nine games, and she eliminated Daytona Beach champion Sofia Kenin 6-3, 6-0 in today's quarterfinal.

The boys semifinals have unseeded Stephen Watson against Catalin Mateas, also unseeded, and Daytona Beach champion Alex Rybakov, the No. 4 seed, against No. 5 seed Tommy Paul.

For complete results and draws, see the tournament page at usta.com.

At the $10,000 Futures in Orange Park, Florida, Mitchell Krueger and Kyle Edmund of Great Britain will renew their rivalry in Friday's quarterfinals.  Krueger won their first round Wimbledon Juniors encounter 10-8 in the third last July, one of the best matches of the boys tournament, while Edmund took their semifinal meeting at a $10,000 Futures in Alabama on clay last October 2-6, 6-2, 6-3. Edmund, who won last week's Futures in Vero Beach, is on a seven-match winning streak. Other Americans in the quarterfianls are Dennis Nevolo, Greg Ouellette and Bjorn Fratangelo, with the latter two playing each other on Friday.

At the $25,000 women's event in Raleigh, North Carolina, juniors Jamie Loeb, Chalena Scholl, Hayley Carter, Samantha Crawford and Mayo Hibi all advanced to the quarterfinals. Crawford, the top seed, will play qualifier Carter and Loeb, who beat former Florida No. 1 Allie Will, the No. 5 seed, 2-6, 6-3, 7-5, meets Asia Muhammad. Muhammad defeated wild card Taylor Davidson 5-7, 6-2, 6-2 today after Davidson had surprised No. 4 seed Maria-Fernanda Alvarez-Teran of Bolivia in the first round.

In the bottom half, No. 7 seed Hibi plays Scholl, and in the international quarterfinal, No. 2 seed Adriana Perez of Venezuela faces No. 6 seed Alyona Sotnikova of Ukraine.

5 comments:

Brent said...

Hopefully, others entered the pool on tennisrecruiting.net. Pretty cool that they put that on. I went with the following selections...

ROUND OF 32
UCLA over TCU
Illinois over Vanderbilt
Duke over South Carolina
Kentucky over Michigan
Ohio State over Washington
Texas A&M over Texas
Baylor over Tulsa
USC over Alabama
Georgia over Wake Forest
Oklahoma over Auburn
Pepperdine over LSU
Ole Miss over Memphis
Tennessee over Boise State
Mississippi State over Harvard
Florida over Cal
Virginia over Minnesota

ROUND OF 16
UCLA over Illinois
Duke over Kentucky
Ohio State over Texas A&M
USC over Baylor
Oklahoma over Georgia
Pepperdine over Ole Miss
Mississippi St over Tennessee
Virginia over Florida

QUARTERS
UCLA over Duke
USC over Ohio State
Pepperdine over Oklahoma
Virginia over Mississippi St

SEMIS
UCLA over USC
Virginia over Pepperdine

FINALS
Virginia over UCLA, 4-2

Austin said...

Round of 64
(1)UCLA over UMKC
TCU over Drake
Illinois over Georgia State
(16)Vandy over ETSU
(9)Duke over Coastal Carolina
South Carolina over UNC-W
Michigan over VaTech
(8)Kentucky over WMich
(5)Ohio State over Clev State
Washington over Notre Dame
Texas over TAMU-CC
(12)Texas A&M over Marist
(13)Baylor over Prarie View
Tulsa over Michigan State
Alabama over San Diego
(4)USC over Sac State
(3)Georgia over Binghamton
Wake Forest over Northwestern
Auburn over NC State
(14)Oklahoma over Wichita State
(11)Pepperdine over UCSB
LSU over Stanford
Memphis over BYU
(6)Mississippi over Lehigh
(7)Tennessee over SCST
Clemson over Boise State
Harvard over Samford
(10)Miss State over Austin Peay
(15)Florida over Denver
Cal over Florida State
Minnesota over VCU
(2)Virginia over FDU

Round of 32
(1)UCLA over TCU
(16)Vandy over Illinois
(9)Duke over South Carolina
(8)Kentucky over Michigan
(5)Ohio State over Washington
(12)Texas A&M over Texas
(13)Baylor over Tulsa
(4)USC over Alabama
(3)Georgia over Wake Forest
(14)Oklahoma over Auburn
(11)Pepperdine over LSU
(6)Mississippi over Memphis
(7)Tennessee over Clemson
(10)Miss State over Harvard
(15)Florida over Cal
(2)Virginia over Minnesota

Round of 16
(1)UCLA over (16)Vandy
(9)Duke over (8)Kentucky
(5)Ohio State over (12)Texas A&M
(4)USC over (13)Baylor
(14)Oklahoma over (3)Georgia
(11)Pepperdine over (6)Mississippi
(7)Tennessee over (10)Miss State
(2)Virginia over (15)Florida

Quarterfinals
(1)UCLA over (9)Duke
(5)Ohio State over (4)USC
(14)Oklahoma over (11)Pepperdine
(2)Virginia over (7)Tennessee

Semifinals
(5)Ohio State over (1)UCLA
(2)Virginia over (14)Oklahoma

Finals
(2)Virginia over (5)Ohio State

I don’t think USC will have Gomez & DeVroome healthy, otherwise would have picked them to the finals.

If Ohio State didn’t have to beat USC & UCLA back to back I would have picked them to beat Virginia

College fan said...

I think Ohio St. has the best player in Rola and the best doubles combination, especially since the defending NCAA champ is only good enough for #3 doubles on this team.

They should be favored in those two spots against everyone.

Plus Champaign is the closest they will come to a "home" NCAA tournament.

All they need is for 2 of the remaining 5 singles guys to step up and they have as good a chance as UCLA or even UVA, who is definitely vulnerable at 4-6 singles. By that I mean UVA would not be clearly favored at 4-6 against Ohio St. or UCLA (except UVa would be at #6 vs. UCLA)

russ said...

Could have an upset brewing in Durham. UNC Wilmington wins doubles, has four first sets in singles. South Carolina won 4-3 earlier, but captured doubles point in that dual.

russ said...

I guess that explains the different reactions by UNC Wilmington and South Carolina to the NCAA selection on their videos: 4-0 wilmington