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Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Six US Men Advance to Final Round of Wimbledon Qualifying, Five US Women Survive First Round; US Open National Playoffs Sectional Update

All six US men who won their first round Wimbledon qualifying matches on Monday won their second round matches today, and with one more victory necessary on Wednesday to reach the main draw.

Five qualifiers are the maximum however, as No. 12 seed Rhyne Williams and No. 27 seed Bobby Reynolds will meet in one final round qualifying match.  No. 4 seed Wayne Odesnik, No. 6 seed Denis Kudla, No. 8 seed Tim Smyczek and unseeded Alex Kuznetsov advanced to the final round of qualifying with wins today.  Odesnik plays No. 20 seed Olivier Rochus of Belgium, Kudla faces No. 23 seed Ruben Bemelmans also of Belgium, Smyczek plays Australian Matt Reid and Kuznetsov meets yet another Belgian, Maxime Authom.

The women's qualifying began today, with five of the 11 US women advancing to Wednesday's second round. The two most recent US Open girls champions, Samantha Crawford and Grace Min, picked up victories, with 2012 champion Crawford defeating Chiara Scholl 6-2, 7-5 and 2011 champion Min beating Stephanie Vogt of Liechtenstein 6-3, 6-2.  Crawford has traveled to London but will play another American again Tuesday, No. 10 seed Vania King, who defeated wild card Lisa Whybourn of Great Britain 6-1, 7-5(5).  Irina Falconi zipped past Kateryna Kozlova of Ukraine 6-2, 6-1 and another former college star, Maria Sanchez, the No. 12 seed, also got through in straight sets, defeating Ana Vrljic of Croatia 7-5, 6-1.  Julia Cohen, Jessica Pegula(14), Nicole Gibbs, Madison Brengle and Shelby Rogers fell in their opening round matches.

For more on Tuesday's men's qualifying see this article from the tournament website. For a review of some of the first round of women's qualifying, see this article.

The qualifying draws can be found here.

A couple of the sectional qualifying events for the US Open National Playoffs were completed over the weekend in the New England and Eastern sections.

Stanford freshman Nolan Paige won the New England men's tournament for the third time in four years. Fifteen-year-old Meghan Kelley won the women's tournament to earn a place in the National Playoff in August at the New Haven Open.  Kelley also won the mixed doubles tournament, with 33-year-old Daniel Quiceno.

In the Eastern section tournaments, Damon Gooch, the former Elon standout, picked up his second straight national berth with a win over Oklahoma State freshman Richard Del Nunzio. Gooch won the Mid-Atlantic sectional qualifying tournament last year.  Magda Okruashvili defended her title in the women's tournament, beating Princeton recruit Alanna Wolff in the final. Two former college players, Tarakaa Bertrand (Vanderbilt) and Sam Sweeney (North Central) won the mixed doubles tournament.

The Northern California sectional qualifying begins Wednesday, with pop star Red Foo (Stefan Gordy) scheduled to play his first match Wednesday evening. Ayaka Okuno, the Georgia freshman who has been coached by Gordy during her junior career, is in the women's tournament, and they are playing as a team in the mixed.  Area juniors CiCi Bellis, Mary Closs and Hadley Berg are in the women's draw as are USC's Giuliana Olmos and Cal's Anett Schutting. Amy Bowtell of Ireland is also in the draw, and despite her WTA ranking of 450, she is not seeded, even though the seeding criteria says "Within each division, the top two players/teams will be seeded based on their ATP/WTA computer ranking (if any)."

With the newly designed USTA website, I'm not able to find any of the releases I'm being sent, but if you would like to read the full release on these playoffs, I've posted it via google drive.