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Thursday, February 25, 2016

Rubin, Kingsley, Bellis Advance in Pro Circuit Events; Clark into Argentina Grade 2 Semifinals; BNP Paribas Prequalifying Draws, Collegiate Event

For the second week in a row at the $10,000 Futures in Plantation, Florida, only one American has advanced to the quarterfinals.  Last week Stefan Kozlov was the sole US representative; this week only No. 2 seed Noah Rubin survived second round action.

Rubin, currently 217 in the ATP rankings, had a tough match with 16-year-old Patrick Kypson, who had just earned his second ATP point on Wednesday.  Rubin needed two hours and 37 minutes to get past Kypson 7-5, 5-7, 6-3.  Teens Isaiah Strode and Oliver Crawford were beaten in straight sets, as were Alex Kuznetsov and wild card Wil Spencer, who lost to recent USC graduate Roberto Quiroz of Ecuador. Quiroz is one of three qualifiers to advance to the quarterfinals where he will next face Rubin.

At the $25,000 women's tournament in Rancho Santa Fe, teens CiCi Bellis and Raveena Kingsley have reached the quarterfinals, with Hanna Chang coming agonizingly close to her first $25,000-level quarterfinal. Chang was beaten by No. 5 seed Julia Boserup 3-6, 6-3, 7-6(5) in a match that took two hours and 34 minutes to complete.  Bellis defeated qualifier Aleksandra Wozniak of Canada 6-2, 6-3, with Kingsley taking out another Canadian, lucky loser Francoise Abanda, 6-4, 6-4.  Kingsley will play Asia Muhammad, a 3-6, 6-3, 6-3 winner over Sonya Kenin, while Bellis will face Vania King.

The last of the ITF Grade 2s in South America is this week in Argentina, with the semifinals set for Friday.  Four US girls made the quarterfinals, but  Morgan Coppoc(3), Raquel Pedraza(5), Victoria Emma(7) and Chiara Lommer(16) all dropped their matches to seeded players.  Zeke Clark, the No. 7 seed, has advanced to the semifinals after a 6-4, 6-3 win over No. 3 seed Genaro Alberto Olivieri of Argentina. Olivieri won the Grade A Abierto Juvenil Mexicano last November, so beating a clay courter on his home surface is a notable accomplishment for Clark.

It's unusual for a Top 100 player to enter a Grade 4 tournament, but Liam Caruana, currently No. 64, is in El Salvador this week, where he is, of course, the No. 1 seed. He has advanced to the semifinals, as has Andrew Fenty, the No. 3 seed. Three US girls have reached the semifinals: top seed Melissa Plambeck, No. 8 seed Alexandra Angyalosy and No. 2 seed Jimena Rodriguez-Benito.

Indian Wells Tennis Garden, site of BNP Paribas Open next month

The BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells has posted the draws for the prequalifying tournament it holds annually, which begins on Monday, February 29th.  The draws are more fluid than most, with many no shows and withdraws, but the top seeds in the men's draw are Nick Meister, Clay Thompson and Evan Song.  The top seeds in the women's draw are Mandy Minella(LUX), Alla Kudryavetseva(RUS) and Julia Boserup.  Claire Liu, Kayla Day, Alexandra Sanford, Sonya Kenin and Alexa Graham are among the many juniors who are entered in the event as of now.

The tournament also announced the field for its third annual Collegiate Tennis Challenge, with two women's teams--Baylor and USC--competing for the first time.  The complete release is below:


Collegiate Tennis Challenge Returns for Third Consecutive Year

INDIAN WELLS, Calif. – February, 24, 2016 – The BNP Paribas Open Collegiate Tennis Challenge presented by Oracle will be held over the final weekend, March 18-20, of the BNP Paribas Open, the largest ATP World Tour and WTA combined two-week event in the world, it was announced today by Chief Executive Officer Raymond Moore.

This year the BNP Paribas Open Collegiate Tennis Challenge, which launched in 2013, will feature both men’s and women’s teams. Baylor University and University of Southern California will bring men’s and women’s teams, and the University of Illinois, University of California-Berkeley and University of Oklahoma will bring men’s teams. The event will be held at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden, one of the preeminent tennis venues in the world.

“The BNP Paribas Open has a rich history of featuring up-and-coming talent in our main draw, and the Collegiate Tennis Challenge presented by Oracle allows us to showcase some rising stars on the collegiate level,” said Moore. “This event gives fans another great experience to add to the final weekend of the BNP Paribas Open.”

The men’s teams from Baylor University and University of Illinois will face-off on Friday, March 18 to kick off the Collegiate Tennis Challenge. Saturday’s schedule contains three matches – the first two are men’s matches with Baylor University taking on University of California-Berkeley and University of Oklahoma (men) battling University of Southern California, and they are followed by a women’s matchup between Baylor University and University of Southern California. Sunday’s final day of competition includes two men’s matches; Baylor University vs. University of Southern California and University of Oklahoma vs. University of California-Berkeley.

“Oracle is proud to debut both men’s and women’s teams at this year’s BNP Paribas Open Collegiate Tennis Challenge,” said Oracle Chief Executive Officer Mark Hurd. “The opportunity to play at a world-class venue like the Indian Wells Tennis Garden provides an amazing experience for the student-athletes and gives fans a chance to see some of the finest talent and programs in collegiate tennis.”

All matches will count toward the official collegiate team records for the 2016 season. The Collegiate Tennis Challenge is free for patrons with BNP Paribas Open tickets or event credentials for the respective dates.
For more information, visit www.bnpparibasopen.com, and for continuing coverage of the BNP Paribas Open Collegiate Tennis Challenge presented by Oracle, follow @OracleTennis, @BNPPARIBASOPEN and @ITATennis on Twitter.


USA College Tennis said...

The International Tennis School, North Carolina State, was upset yesterday by UNC Wilmington, 4-3. My advice gentlemen…better check your scholarship contracts:)