Qualifier Lahey Advances to Semis in ITF Grade 1; Kwiatkowski Reaches Singles Semis, Doubles Final in Charlottesville; Desiatnikov Wins Young Teen Quarterfinal in Bethany Beach; College Notes
Sixteen-year-old Ashley Lahey's ITF junior ranking is 353, but that's obviously not indicative of her level of play this week at the Grade 1 in Offenbach Germany, where she has reached the semifinals as a qualifier. The Pepperdine recruit defeated unseeded Michaela Bayerlova of the Czech Republic 5-7, 6-4, 6-2 to reach her first Grade 1 semifinal. She will play No. 8 seed Lara Salden of Belgium, while the other girls semifinal features French Open champion and No. 1 seed Rebeka Masarova of Switzerland against No. 13 seed Lea Boskovic of Croatia.
University of Virginia rising senior Thai Kwiatkowski has made the most of his wild card into the $25,000 Futures tournament this week in Charlottesville. The 21-year-old reached his second career Futures semifinal with a 6-3, 7-6(5) win over No. 7 seed Alex Kuznetsov and will play No. 4 seed Tennys Sandgren next. Kwiatkowski and teammate Mac Styslinger have reached the doubles final, where they will play Greg Jones of Australia and Jose Statham of New Zealand. Neither team is seeded. Top seed Darian King of Barbados faces unseeded Dennis Nevolo in the other singles semifinal.
In the women's $10,000 tournament in Bethany Beach Delaware, Abigail Desiatnikov, just 15 herself, ended the run of 14-year-old Whitney Osuigwe with a 6-4, 6-1 win in today's quarterfinals. Desiatnikov will play Alexandra Mueller, who defeated lucky loser Christina Rosca 6-3, 0-6, 6-4. The other semifinal will feature two 17-year-olds, with Ingrid Neel facing Ashley Kratzer. Neel defeated qualifier Lindsay Lee-Waters 7-5, 6-3 and Kratzer reached her first Pro Circuit semifinal with a 6-4, 6-4 win over No. 4 seed Sophie Chang.
None of the three US teens competing in quarterfinals in Europe managed a win today, with Stefan Kozlov losing to Sam Querrey 6-3, 6-0 at the ATP in s'Hertogenbosch Netherlands, Frances Tiafoe falling to Bjorn Fratangelo at the Surbiton Challenger 6-3, 6-4 and Tommy Paul going out to Gregorie Barrere of France 6-2, 6-3 at the Lyon Challenger. Kozlov and Tiafoe play again tomorrow however, as both are entered in the qualifying for the ATP 500 at Queen's Club.
Division I coaching announcements are frequent this time of year, and there have been several the past week, particularly in the assistant positions.
Illinois has announced Evan Clark, who was the interim coach for 2015-16, has been named head coach of the women's program. Although rarely disclosed in most announcements, this release mentions a four-year contract for Clark.
Tennessee announced former Volunteer Alison Ojeda is returning to her alma mater as the women's assistant coach. Ojeda had been the associate head coach for the Baylor women the past six years. I had missed this back in April, but Sonia Hahn-Patrick, Tennessee's co-head coach with husband Mike Patrick, resigned, so an assistant's position was added.
Denise Dy is returning to her alma mater to become the women's assistant coach at the University of Washington. Dy had been an assistant at Iowa the past two years.
Andrew Veeder has been named women's assistant coach at Arizona. He was previously the women's assistant at Central Florida, which has an opening for its head coaching position.
Matt Cowley, who just completed his eligibility at Utah, has been named assistant men's coach at Brigham Young.
Carol Zhao confirms in this interview that she's leaving Stanford for professional tennis. She also is not sold on the no-ad format.
NCAA champion Danielle Collins of Virginia was named the 2016 Honda Award winner for tennis.