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Thursday, September 26, 2013

US Girls Reach Junior Fed Cup Semifinals, US Boys Join Top Seed Russia on Junior Davis Cup Sidelines; Waco ITF Semifinals Set

With a 2-1 win over France, the third-seeded US Junior Fed Cup team has reached the semifinals in San Luis Potosi Mexico, keeping alive the goal of defending the 2012 title. That team, consisting of Taylor Townsend, Louisa Chirico and Gabby Andrews, swept through the field without losing a match; this year's team of Katerina Stewart, Kaitlyn McCarthy and Michaela Gordon (who played on the US team that won the ITF 14-and-under championships in the Czech Republic last month), lost their first match today, with Stewart falling to Margot Yerolymos 7-6(1), 7-5 at No. 1 singles, after McCarthy had given the US a 1-0 by defeating Apolline Rassat 6-2, 6-1.

That left it to the doubles if the US was going to clinch a semifinal berth outright, and Gordon and McCarthy delivered the point with a 6-4, 6-3 win over Yerolymos and Rassat.  The US will play No. 2 seed Australia in Saturday's semifinal, with Australia also needing a win in the doubles to advance over No. 8 seed Brazil. Naiktha Bains got the win at No. 1 singles and teamed with Priscilla Hon for the doubles victory.

It's top seed Russia against No. 4 seed Hungary in the other girls semifinal after Russia defeated unseeded Mexico 3-0 and Hungary beat unseeded Bolivia by the same score today.

After mostly predictable results in the Junior Davis Cup the first two days, upsets surfaced today, with top seed Russia falling to No. 7 seed Spain 2-1. Jaume Antoni Munar Clar was the hero for Spain, beating Roman Safiullin 6-1, 6-2 at No. 1 singles to make it 1-1, then teaming with Pedro Martinez Portero to take the doubles over Andrey Rublev and Evgeny Tyurney. Spain will play No. 3 seed Germany, who advanced 2-1 over No. 5 seed Japan, thanks to two wins by Alexander Zverev.

The US boys, seeded fourth, fell to No. 6 seed Australia today, 2-1.  Henrik Wiersholm lost 6-3, 6-3 to Oliver Anderson at No. 2 singles. Stefan Kozlov defeated Akira Santillan 7-6(5), 4-6, 6-3 at No. 1 to make it 1-1, leaving the doubles as the tiebreaker.  Wiersholm and Tommy Paul trailed 7-6(5), 4-1 with Marc Polmans and Anderson serving for Australia, but Wiersholm and Paul got both breaks back only to get broken at 5-5, and Australia served out the 7-6(5), 7-5 victory.  Australia will play No. 2 seed Korea, who claimed its third straight 3-0 win, today's over South Africa.

For complete results, see the ITF tournament site.  For more news articles, see the ITF junior website.

The first of the ITF fall circuit tournaments in the United States is in Waco, Texas this week,  and the semifinals in singles and finals in doubles are set for the Grade 5 event.

In the boys semifinals, top seed Nathan Ponwith will play No. 11 seed Evan Zhu and No. 2 seed Jake DeVine meets No. 4 seed Catalin Mateas, in a rematch of the 16s final at the Carson International Spring Championships this April.

There are also four Americans in the girls semifinals, with No. 7 seed Jessica Golovin facing unseeded Emerald Able and No. 14 seed Madison Westby playing No. 2 seed Racquel Pedraza. Golovin beat top seed Chloe Ouellet-Pizer in the quarterfinals today.

Golovin is in the doubles final, with Emma Higuchi, as the top seeds. They will play Jada Hart and Stephanie Hazell, the No. 8 seeds, for the championship.

The boys doubles final features top seeds Reilly Opelka and Ponwith against No. 2 seeds Alfredo Perez and Mateas.