International Spring Championships Slideshow; Southern Cal Women Claim Pac-12 Title; Buchanan Defeats Tiafoe, Takes Early Lead in USTA French Open Wild Card Race
My recap of the International Spring Championships went up last week at the Tennis Recruiting Network, but because the Easter Bowl follows that tournament immediately, I wasn't able to get the slideshow from Carson processed until today. I also will have short videos available of the eight finalists in the next few days.
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Last night in LA, the Southern Cal women avenged an earlier 4-3 loss to UCLA, and this one counted in the Pac-12 standings, clinching the Pac-12 title for the Women of Troy. UCLA won the doubles point and went up 3-0 with wins by Robin Anderson at line 1 and Catherine Harrison at line 5. Zoe Scandalis won the only straight-set match over Chanelle Van Nguyen at line 3 to put USC on the board, and Meredith Xeopoleas at 6, Giuliana Olmos at 2 and Madison Westby at 4 all came from a set down to post wins, with freshman Westby clinching the match with a 5-7, 7-6(5), 6-4 victory over Kyle McPhillips.
Somehow in all the chaos, the Pac-12 conference trophy ended up in pieces, but that probably barely registered in the euphoria of such a win.
The USC men traveled to UCLA yesterday and also came away with the win, beating the Bruins 4-2. Stanford can still win the Pac-12 regular season conference title with a win over Cal on Saturday, and unlike the women, the men also play a conference team tournament, next week in Ojai. For more on yesterday's match, see the USC website.
At the $100,000 Sarasota Challenger, former Ohio State star Chase Buchanan defeated Frances Tiafoe 6-0, 6-3 to reach the semifinals, where he'll face No. 6 seed Facundo Bagnis of Argentina. Tiafoe had all sorts of difficulties in the opening set, with foot faults and net cords adding to the frustrations that his errors were causing him. Buchanan played well, facing only one break point and saving that, and while Tiafoe put a bit of pressure on him in the second set, the 17-year-old was unable to find the form that had helped him win five matches this week. With Jared Donaldson's 6-2, 6-3 loss to No. 2 seed Federico Delbonis tonight, Buchanan is now in first place by himself in the Har-Tru Challenge for the USTA's French Open wild card.
The next tournament in the Challenge is next week in Savannah, and the tournament announced today that Tiafoe and Stefan Kozlov have been award main draw wild cards. The third and final tournament in the Challenge is another $50,000 Challenger, in Tallahassee.