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Thursday, August 28, 2014

US Open Junior Qualifying Begins Friday; Bellis Falls to Diyas in Three; Gibbs Reaches Third Round; Should Bellis Sue the NCAA?

The qualifying draws for the US Open Junior Championships have been posted with eight American boys and nine American girls aiming to join the 34 US juniors already in the main draws, which will get underway on Sunday.

The boys in qualifying are Dan Kerznerman(10), Robert Levine, Sameer Kumar(11) and wild cards Gianni Ross, Patrick Kypson, Connor Hance, Sam Riffice and Jacob Brumm.

The girls in qualifying are Raquel Pedraza, Johnnise Renaud, Olivia Hauger(5), Madison Bourguignon and wild cards Kayla Day, Caroline Dolehide, Alexandra Sanford, Ryan Peus and Ellie Halbauer.

Qualifying begins at 10 a.m. Friday on the Practice courts outside the Billie Jean King National Tennis and there will be live scoring available on the usopen.org website.  The schedule for Friday's matches is here. I will be arriving in New York tomorrow afternoon, but probably won't get there in time to watch any of the first round of qualifying, although I do hope to see some of the second round men's doubles match between Francis Tiafoe and Michael Mmoh and Rajeev Ram and Scott Lipsky.

Due to long matches on Court 17 today, CiCi Bellis ended up playing her second round against Zarina Diyas of Kazakhstan in prime time, with the support of a enthusiatic crowd.  The 15-year-old National 18s champion played well after a shaky first few games and forced a third set, but eventually fell to the 20-year-old, whose WTA ranking is 48, 6-3, 0-6, 6-2.  Bellis might have tired midway through the third set, but she did not look overmatched or out of place in any of the extended games and rallies between the two.  She now has some time to rest before the junior championships begin, and she'll be the top seed, facing an entirely different scenario than the one she competed in this week.

Former Stanford star Nicole Gibbs beat Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova today at the US Open
Two-time NCAA champion Nicole Gibbs won the biggest match of her career today, defeating No. 23 seed Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia 6-4, 6-7(6), 6-3 on Court 17. Gibbs served for the match twice in the second set, and had a match point at 5-6 in the second set tiebreaker, but she couldn't convert. She kept fighting however, and didn't experience similar problems when she got up a break in the third set, closing out the victory to become one of just four US women in the third round. She plays No. 11 seed Flavia Pennetta of Italy next, with Serena Williams meeting Varvara Lepchenko in another third round match. Venus Williams is the only American woman in the bottom half of the draw.  Gibbs talks about overcoming that disappointing stretch in the second set in her press conference.

John Isner and Sam Querrey advanced to the third round with wins today, while Tim Smyczek will attempt to join them in third round play tomorrow.

Wild cards Stefan Kozlov and Christina McHale won their opening mixed doubles match, beating No. 7 seeds Julia Goerges of Germany and Nenad Zimonjic of Serbia 7-5, 2-6, 12-10.

Jared Donaldson and Michael Russell beat their fellow wild card team, Kozlov and Noah Rubin, the Kalamazoo champions, 2-6, 7-6(6), 6-4. Donaldson and Russell will play the Bryan twins in the second round.

Complete draws can be found at usopen.org.

An interesting article by Patrick Hruby on the NCAA's insistence on college athletes being amateurs was posted today on Vice Sports, with background on why the $10,000 expense rule was adopted in Division I tennis only and why CiCi Bellis should be able to keep the prize money she won at the Open without jeopardizing her ability to play college tennis in the future.  I know plenty of athletic departments fear the end of the world as they know it with the professionalization of college sports, but the Olympics and tennis, once virulently insistent on amateurism, have managed to survive and thrive without the catastrophes many in college athletics are predicting now.

30 comments:

Gibbs fan said...

Gibbs is projected to break the Top 100 for a career high ranking. Not bad after 15 months on the Pro Tour..

Steve Boussom said...

The author of the article on Bellis does not understand our game. The likelihood of her going off to college after a 1st round main draw at USOpen at 15 years old is remote.

Steve Boussom said...

Colette, you authored an earlier article about Bellis being able to keep the money and still be amateur up to $10K. How is Jared Donaldson still able to play USOpen juniors since he lost 1st round main draw this week and will collect at least $30K? Please let me and the rest of your fans know?

Colette Lewis said...

The ITF makes no distinction between professionals and amateurs in tennis. That concept lives on only at the NCAA

Willie beaman said...

Athletes getting paid means the end of sports like tennis. I don't think people understand this!

Curious Mind said...

Colette, what's the scoop on Sameer Kumar? Was in the jr quallies.... Third on ct P12.... Replaced. Did he get into the maindraw or wd?

Shawn - TN said...

Is anyone else bewildered by how the USTA PD gives out their wildcards to a rising 9th grader, (although he turns 15 this October, so that couldn't be right either for a 9th grader). Lost 1,1 btw, what a waste.
Why not give it to someone who might win? Like one of the 17 year olds ( rising seniors) on the alternate list that just missed the qualifier by a few spots out? Just don't get it.

Sarcasm? said...

Willie Beaman, was that sarcasm? I'm assuming it was, so good one, but the NCAA seems to think that is actually the case.

...and on the off chance it wasn't, care to explain how?

LoveTheGame said...

Agree with Willie Beaman that Schools outside of the top 30-50 largest athletic programs will not have the funding to support many non-revenue men's sports. It's been happening slowly (tennis programs cut over the last decade) and may become worse.

Odd said...

Colette, what's your take on how the wildcards are being given out for juniors. Should they be expected to win or even put up a competitive match, or is the USTA just trying to give them the experience? Makes no sense this one. But, I see he is from Junior Champion place in Maryland and they seem to have some kind of hold on the wildcards too as this was their player. Doesn't seem right to the kids who actually played ITF juniors to get a high enough ranking and then just miss it.

Colette Lewis said...

My take on wild cards is that they are a gift. No one should be upset if they don't get one.

Colette Lewis said...

@Shawn-
Not sure who you are referring to, but Arconada is the only full-time JTCC player in qualifying

Shawn - TN said...

Kypson is there per there press release

Disappointed said...

7 American Boys in the 1st round, and only two American Boys get to the second round for the Qualifier at the US Open Juniors. What's going on here?

Not Surprising said...

Disappointed

USTA is giving wildcards in us open jr qualifying to younger players & not the next best 17-18 year olds who did not get in on your own merit.

USTA believes giving younger players wildcards into bigger events even though they are far from ready for that level is for experience.

That is why you see most of the juniors lose in first round.



get real said...

To Collette
As for WCs. Agree with you for juniors but in the pros it's different. Yes a WC is a gift but it also means real money, especially in the slams, for younger upcoming pros who are struggling financial with limited USTA backing. Seems a bit of a waste at the slams to give these to boys for the experience when our young pros could use the chance and the money.

Steve Boussom said...

Colette,

I also was watching results of junior boys and noticed a score for Sameer Kumar but now he is missing from the results. Do you know anything? Thank you for your thoughts on WC, the are a gift.

Colette Lewis said...

Ponwith had to withdraw with an injury so Kumar got his wild card into the main draw

Jon from Atlanta said...

Bellis will of course go to college. Her parents and her are smart enough to know a 5'4" 105 lb. women with a mediocre serve has a very slim chance of sustaining a long career. She would have to stay in the top 50 for a while to make money in tennis. Thats a long shot for someone her size. Giving up that much height and weight every week would destroy her very quickly. So she should and will end up playing college tennis.

Randy said...

Justine Henin , a fully grown woman is about 5'5 ( 5'6- nah). Glad she didn't have Jon from Atlanta arcing her

Jon from Atlanta said...

Randy, apples and oranges. Henin was 5'6" and 130 lbs of muscle, Bellis is 5'4" and 105. Henin had numerous injuries due to battling larger players. Players are getting bigger, not smaller. Ci Ci is 15.5, she will not get any bigger. She will be a great college player, but not a money making professional.

Shawn - said...

Jon, is Cici done growing? Done filling out with weight and muscle ? Are you her personal doctor?

What the heck! said...

No American boy got through the junior qualifier?????
Can we agree the PD doesn't know what it is doing in handing out wild cards.

Are you her dad too? said...

Ya, not feeling the personal statements made by Jon with such authority. You have no idea what her college plans are or how she will grow. All we know is she is 15. And from what I see there is a big difference in a 15 year old girl and a 20 year old woman. There are plenty of girls who grow after 15 for all kinds of reasons, but particularly female athletes whose maturation is delayed because of their extreme physical workouts from a young age.
Some people just can't stand to see other people successful. Maybe look on the inside and see what is troubling you.

Uh? said...

About the comment of CiCi not being a money making pro, ahemmm cough cough, didn't she technically just make over $35,000 if she wanted to?

SpectatoR said...

Jon, your comment is really stupid. CC is already an inch taller than Cibulkova who is definitely having a legit pro career. Many things can happen next few years but her size will not deter her from turning pro. She will get much stronger even if she does not grow.

you're pushing ridiculous expectations said...

To the person complaining about US boys in junior qualies... name me one US Junior that would have probably qualified for US Open Jrs but didn't receive a wild card. There's maybe a couple slightly older guys out there that are about as good as some of the guys put into qualies, but there aren't any miraculous shoe-in for the main draw talents that got snubbed out of qualies like you seem to think there are. Tell us exactly who you would have preferred to see.

Jon from Atlanta said...

SpectatoR, thats just not true. Drabik and others have done decades of studies of athletes. Female athletes are 100% different than males. By age 13 they are at maximum size and power and speed. The science proves it. There are very few exceptions. 1000s of data points show a 13-14 year old girl is as strong as a 20 year old women, and even a split second faster. Totally different from males where they keep getting much faster and stronger through their early 20s. Read Drabik, Children and Sports Training.

Cibulkova is a freak of nature and a terrible example. Her legs are massive, she likely outweighs Ci Ci by 40 pounds of muscle.

Bellis is a nice player but the odds say a small AND light girl will not hold up on tour. The smaller girls that do make it are quite muscular or have a 'dense' bone structure.

For example, I train a 9 year old girl, she is already 5 feet and 92 lbs of muscle. Bellis weighs 10 lbs more than her. Lets be real here.

Real World said...

Jon- You just demonstrated once again that you don't know what you're talking about. Those studies indicate that girls are at their strongest POUND FOR POUND (FOR THEIR WEIGHT) in their early teens, not DIRECTLY. That's why young girls tend to peak in gymnastics and figure skating at this age. However, they DON'T tend to be stronger directly than they will be later in life. Just take a look at the dramatic increase in muscle mass in the legs and shoulders of someone like Maria Sharapova now as compared to when she was 14 or even 16 years old. You would have to be blind to miss this. Also, if you were correct then 13 and 14 year old girls would be dominating the WTA and not one player is that age in the top 100!

Under a similar analysis, an ant is stronger than a human is POUND FOR POUND (for their WEIGHT), but not directly. That's why an ant cannot push a human around and any human could crush the ant with little effort.

That is just ridiculous... said...

"By age 13 they are at maximum size and power and speed. The science proves it."

Are you perhaps looking at a study only measuring girls that do gymnastics which as everyone knows, stunts their growth and maturity? hmmm my daughter was 5'5" at 13, was 5'9" at 15 and is now just under 5'11" at 17. And oh ya, she is way stronger than she was as a little girl at 13. I guess we are just one of those rare exceptions, but every other girl on her basketball team pretty much grew the same way. So did the volleyball team. I guess it is an entire team of exceptions. Not one of them quit growing at 13. I am thinking you must be really naive or just trying to manipulate your players into thinking they will be better than Bellis. Don't count on it, she has something you can't train into anyone.