Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Aney Ousts Top Seed Liang in Third Round at USTA Girls 18s Clay Court Championships

©Colette Lewis 2013--
Memphis, TN--

Fifteen-year-old Jessie Aney had difficulty deciding whether to play the 16s or the 18s division of the USTA Clay Courts this week. But with a ice hockey development camp coming up, she thought a possible early exit from the 18s would have a silver lining. With No. 1 seed Spencer Liang as Aney's third round opponent, those plans still seemed likely until Tuesday morning, when Aney defeated Liang 6-3, 6-2.

Liang struggled throughout the match, played on the Racquet Club of Memphis's stadium court, making more errors than usual and finding it difficult to get the ball by Aney even when an opening appeared. The points throughout the match were long and grueling, and although the temperatures hadn't reached the low 90s of the late afternoon, a lot of physical effort was required in every game.

Aney has a one-handed backhand that Liang tried to attack, but whether it was of the slice or topspin variety, Aney made few errors on that side. Aney came to the net often, knocking off her overheads with confidence and sliding on the clay like a Spanish veteran.

"I don't play on it too much," Aney said. "We have a couple of clay courts in Rochester (Minnesota), but they're not very good. I think hockey has helped a lot with that. Stopping and stuff, it's kind of similar. I really like playing on clay, it's really fun."

In the second set, Liang went up a break at 2-1, but Aney broke back immediately, shutting the door on any possible comeback from Liang. Five games later, on a forehand cross court winner, Aney had the victory in her first USTA Level 1 tournament in the 18s division.

"I'd never seen her play before, so I don't know what her level was," said Aney. "But I played really well, I executed really well on my shots.  I didn't really have a plan, I was just trying to play my game, move her around, slide in when I could, play good defense."

Aney has played high school hockey for three years, although she is only a rising sophomore.

"Almost all the high schools in Minnesota have a girls team," said Aney. "This summer I'm doing some camps, called Select 15 camps, and they keep narrowing down the girls from my age until eventually they'll pick a national team for the girls 18s. So now I'm at the final 60 for my age."

Aney will play University of Michigan sophomore Amy Zhu, a 17 seed, in the round of 32 on Wednesday.

With Liang out, No. 2 seed Peggy Porter becomes the favorite, and she looked the part on Tuesday, needing barely an hour to defeat Alexandra Solovyev 6-1, 6-0.  Porter has now won her first two matches with the loss of only two games.

No. 3 seed Chloe Ouellet-Pizer advance with 6-3, 6-2 win over Smith Hinton, but No. 5 seed Michaela Gordon was beaten by Stephanie Smith 6-2, 6-4.  Gordon, who turns 14 later this month, was having trouble with her serve throughout the match, and Smith was moving well inside the baseline to tee off on Gordon's second serves.

Serving for the match at 5-3, Smith had two match points, but missed a forehand long on the first and saw Gordon hit a forehand winner on the second, and eventually Smith was broken.  Gordon couldn't keep that momentum however, and with Gordon serving at 4-5, a net cord winner by Smith gave her two more match points. This time she converted, with Gordon sending a backhand wide to give Smith the victory.

Other Top 16s seeds to fall were No. 9 seed Brittany Lindl, who lost to Sophie Chang 7-5, 6-0, and No. 12 seed Allison Miller, who was beaten by Katherine Fahey 6-1, 3-6, 6-0.

In all, there are 18 seeds remaining in the round of 32, with 10 of them No. 17 seeds. Only one of the eight sections in the draw has produced the four expected seeds.

For complete results, see the TennisLink site.


College Fan said...

Emilio Gomez qualified for the main draw in Bogota and won his first round match. He next plays Kevin Anderson

anyone watch the Livestream? said...

Did anyone watch the Sandgren/Young match in Binghamton on the LiveStream? It was pretty chippy and the announcer picked up on it fairly early. Young was taking a lot of time getting set when Sandgren would be at the line ready to serve. Sandgren would appeal to the umpire to play at the server's pace, but to little avail. Then Young became rather vocal after points, especially after Sandgren misses. Sandgren double faulted and Young would scream "come on!" Young continued to do it if Sandgren netted a groundstroke or missed an easy shot. Sandgren was clearly perturbed and the announcer would frequently refer to the "gamesmanship" by Young. The announcer even stated that most all players frown upon someone loudly screaming "Come on, Yeah! or something like that" after an opponent error, particularly a careless one. Young also had a sitter in the middle of the court. Sandgren had popped it up and was stuck at the net in a vulnerable position. Young could have hit it anywhere, yet drilled it at Sandgren, who somehow in self defense framed it back over for a winner. Sandgren glared back and screamed his on "Come On!" A very feisty match. Any one know the backstory?

Atlanta said...... said...

No backstory between those two players but Donald is an outsider to the other players because of his mother, Illona. His Mother always isolated him from the other players. So no players want to lose to him especially when he shows that immature, unsportsmanlike behavior.

Donald has lived through this hype that he will be American's hope and make millions of dollars but all he has been is a disappointment.

His Mother hasn't allowed him outside an arm's length from her. She has kept Donald from growing up, so he remains extremely immature.

Through all of this, the burden now needs to fall on Donald as he is almost 24 years old.

Austin said...

I cannot think of one story like Young's in the mens game. His situation is so similar to someone on the womens tour, generally a woman who lets her dad coach her even though he is not qualified, it is very odd. I thought it was weird when he was 17, much less 24. Does anyone know if he still lives at home? That would say a lot. Really it's a sad story.

Dan - GA said...

Come on! Donald Young is 24 for G-d's sake.
Time to stop blaming his mother for his bad behavior.
If he acts like a jerk on the court, that is his deal now.

Stan said...

There are not enough refs now at junior tournaments, and so the kids act worse and worse.
Cursing, ( F word is dropped like crazy), throwing the racquets, spiking the balls outside of the court ( saw it hit a little kid once, no penalty) and massive cheating.

Why should we be surprised when Young acts like our juniors, he is not that much older than them.


Whatever happened to this being a gentleman's sport?

get real said...

I have seen young play a few times and never saw the behavior described. He is talented. He was #1 ITF juniors at 15 and won Wimbledon Jrs, Aussi Open Jrs then the USTA gave him all these WCs to ATP events when he wasn't ready to compete at that level. I also remember seeing him when he was maybe 15 or 16 at the Easter Bowl with a full entourage and so much hype it was unreal. That has to play mind games with your head. Who know why he struggles in the pros but I am sure its way more complicated then his relationship with his parents.