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Saturday, July 13, 2013

Gibbs into Yakima $50K Final; Midwest Defends Intersectional Championship; US Open National Playoffs Update

Two-time NCAA champion Nicole Gibbs has reached the finals of the $50,000 Challenger in Yakima, Washington, defeating No. 3 seed Julia Glushko of Israel 4-6, 6-2, 6-1 in Saturday's semifinal.  Gibbs, the No. 8 seed, fell out of the WTA Top 200 because she was unable to defend her points from last year's Denver $50K, which wasn't on the USTA Pro Circuit schedule this year.  Gibbs will play either Australia's Storm Sanders or Croatia's Ivana Lisjak, neither of whom are seeded, in Sunday's final.

Gibbs was also awarded a wild card into the WTA Bank of the West Classic at Stanford, which begins July 22nd. So far Mallory Burdette, also a former Stanford star, is still in the qualifying draw. Last year Gibbs, again a wild card recipient, won her opening match at the Bank of the West tournament before falling to Serena Williams in the second round.

Jan Abaza and Allie Will won the doubles title Saturday in Yakima, defeating Irina Falconi and Naomi Broady of Great Britain 7-5, 3-6, 10-3. Neither team was seeded.

The USTA Intersectional team competition for 16 and under players was held this week in Shreveport, Louisiana, and the Midwest section defended their title, defeating Southern California 5-4, in a match that was decided by the mixed doubles.

I would have had no clue who won the tournament without this article from the Shreveport Times, because following the tournament through the TennisLink site is close to impossible.  But below is a screenshot of the scores from the final.

I apologize for not posting the final few updates from the sectional playoffs of the US Open National Playoffs, but I got caught up in Wimbledon, which was going on when the last few finished.

The winners of the Middle States sectional tournament are both Princeton players, with Matija Pecotic earning his place in the National competition and Lindsay Graff winning the women's tournament.  They also teamed for the mixed title.

North Carolina recruit Ronnie Schneider won the Midwest men's sectional, and North Illinois' Nelle Youel was the women's winner.  Wil Lofgren and Sandy Niehaus, who won the mixed in 2011 when I covered the tournament back in 2011, won it again this year.

Charles Boyce, a University of California-Irvine recruit, won the Texas men's tournament, with 17-year-old Peggy Porter taking the women's. In keeping with the teen theme, John Mee, 17, and Karina Traxler, 15, won the mixed doubles in Texas.

University of Oklahoma player Nick Papac won the Missouri Valley men's tournament, with 14-year-old Victoria Flores taking the women's tournament.  University of Idaho's Victoria Lozano and Patrick Smith, a former University of Missouri-Kansas City player, won the mixed.

All of these players will be heading to New Haven, Connecticut next month to compete in the National Playoffs, with the winner of the men's and women's national playoffs receiving a qualifying wild card into the US Open. The team that wins the mixed doubles national playoffs will receive a main draw wild card.

For more on the the US Open National Playoffs, including links to each section's articles on their winners, see usopen.org.