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Monday, November 10, 2014

Riffice, Andreescu Win ITF Grade 4 Titles in South Carolina; Maria Mateas Claims Grade 3 Championship in Bolivia; Rubin Qualifies for Champaign Challenger

Fifteen-year-old Sam Riffice won his third ITF Grade 4 title and second in a row yesterday, taking the singles championship in Lexington, South Carolina. No. 3 seed Riffice, who won the championship last week in Atlanta, defeated No. 4 seed Nathan Perrone 3-6, 6-3, 6-1 in the final.

Fourteen-year-old Bianca Andreescu of Canada, the reigning Les Petits As champion, won the girls singles title, the third of her brief ITF junior career.  No. 11 seed Andreescu defeated surprise finalist Taylor Russo, a qualifier, 6-0, 6-2 in the final. Andreescu beat top seed Jade Lewis of New Zealand in the semifinals and No. 3 seed Alexandra Sanford in the quarterfinals.

No. 2 seeds Perrone and Trent Bryde won the the doubles, defeating top seeds Riffice and Vasil Kirkov 6-1, 6-7(6), 10-5. Top seeds Sanford
and Kayla Day defeated No. 6 seeds Andreescu and Anca Craciun, also of Canada, 6-3, 6-3 for the girls doubles title.

The third ITF Junior Circuit tournament in this series is the Grade 4 at the Evert Academy in Boca Raton.  Riffice is the top seed in the boys draw.   Top seed in the girls draw is Panna Udvardy of Hungary, who did not play the Atlanta and Lexington tournaments the past two weeks.

Fifteen-year-old Maria Mateas won her first ITF title last week at the Grade 3 in Bolivia. Mateas, who was unseeded, defeated No. 3 seed Lara Escauriza of Paraguay 6-4, 6-2 in the final.  Top seeds Olivia Hauger and Catalin Mateas lost in the semifinals.

Qualifying was completed today at the $50,000 Champaign Challenger, with Noah Rubin earning a place in the main draw with a 6-1, 7-5 victory over Virginia first-year Alexander Ritschard of Switzerland. Rubin will play former Texas star Ed Corrie in the opening round Tuesday evening, and I plan to be in Champaign for that one.  Rubin was the only American to advance via qualifying.

The women's USTA Pro Circuit events have finished for the year, but in addition to Champaign, there are two more $10,000 Futures events for the men: this week in Niceville, Florida and next week in Pensacola. Former Virginia Tech player Patrick Daciek was the only American to qualify for Niceville, where former Ohio State Buckeye Connor Smith is the top seed.   Reilly Opelka received a special exemption due to his quarterfinal appearance in Birmingham, with Alex Rybakov, Spencer Papa and China's Yuanfeng Li receiving wild cards.  Former Georgia star Wil Spencer, who is a teaching pro now in North Carolina, grew up in the Florida Panhandle, and he received the fourth main draw wild card.


Did the USTA ever hear of spreading the Wild cards around? said...

Rybakov got 3 already this year, and Papa got 7 wildcards in 2014 already... Colette, is this just wild cards for whoever is/was once a Player Development player all over again?

get real said...

Good to see Rubin playing so well. Anyone know if he is taking the semester off from Wake Forest?

Alex said...

No. Rubin is at Wake Forest but for some reason is put on a pedastool and has yet to actually play a college tennis match. He probably won't even play 1 there though (Baogarts, Kan and Mansouri).

get real said...

Great that Wake Forest program supports pro schedule in the fall but anyone knows how that work with missing school/classes and paying for the tournaments?

Alex said...

To get real: I also think it's great that college players can have the flexibility to still play pro as well. And especially when they can pull off wins like Rubin did today. But when it's at the point they are not traveling for competition with the team and forgoing the college season, as Rubin did, that's an issue. If I'm Romain Baogarts and a freshman joins the team and essentially is put on a pedastool as Rubin has (not having to play the fall), I'd be pretty mad. Also from Rubin's perspective, he is missing out on valuable team bonding experiences and a chance to see what college tennis is all about before the spring (and establish a ranking). I just think it's wrong Wake Forest is giving him a scholarship if he isn't representing them (with no injuries).

Josd said...

Rubin is way to goo to be playing college tennis. He knocked of world 200 today. No idea why he didn't just go on tour. His Wake teammates should be kissing his arse to hit with him.

Mick said...

Hey Al,
Get real. The fall is all individual tournaments. If Rubin can get into these pro tournaments then he should play them. He will help his team much more that way when it counts in the spring!

Alex said...


You're right. Why compete for your school and play pro tourneys? That would make too much sense, my bad Mick.

think it over said...

You can't afford to do both, Alex. That's too much time away from school.

Plus many many players with pro aspirations have foregone the fall season to play pro tournaments. This really isn't a new thing if your goals are to make a living on tour. The only difference is that Rubin is doing it as a freshman. Unique, perhaps, but he's shown he is at the level where it's a smart decision.