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Saturday, October 22, 2016

Bellis and Andreescu Meet in Saguenay $50K All-Teen Final; Goransson and Giron Face Off for Berkeley Futures Title; Remaining DI ITA Regionals Heating Up

Seventeen-year-old CiCi Bellis and 16-year-old Bianca Andreescu have reached the final of the $50,000 ITF Women's Circuit event in Saguenay, Canada by starkly different methods.

Top seed Bellis didn't have to play a point in advancing, with No. 4 seed Sachia Vickery giving her a walkover into the final.  Andreescu, facing No. 2 seed Jennifer Brady, went two hours and 34 minutes before coming out with a 7-6(4), 3-6, 7-6(5) decision. With Andreescu serving for the match at 5-4 in the third, Brady saved four match points in a marathon game before finally breaking back.  Brady saved another match point at 6-4 in the tiebreaker, but Andreescu finally converted it for the victory.

Andreescu wasn't as fortunate in the doubles final, although she and fellow Canadian junior Charlotte Robillard-Millette put up a serious fight against top seeds Elena Bogdan and Mihaela Buzarnescu of Romania before falling 6-4, 6-7(4), 10-6.

The success of current college players in pro events continued today at the $25,000 Berkeley Futures, with Cal senior Andre Goransson of Sweden blowing past No. 6 seed Lucas Gomez of Mexico 6-1, 6-0 in just over an hour to reach the final.  Wild card Goransson, who won the ITA Northwest Regional on Monday, has yet to lose a set in his four wins, beating three seeds, with all three losing a set to Goransson 6-0.

On the other extreme is Goransson's opponent in the final, 2014 NCAA champion Marcos Giron, who has now won two consecutive matches after dropping the first set 6-1.  Giron's 1-6, 6-3, 7-5  semifinal win over top seed and former ATP Top 100 player Ruben Bemelmans of Belgium is Giron's best win since returning from hip surgery this fall, although just a year ago, prior to his two hip surgeries, he defeated Australian John Millman, ranked 74 at the time, in the second round of a Challenger in Australia.

Like Andreescu, Goransson fell short in the doubles final, with top seeds Connor Smith and Rhyne Williams defeating alternates Goransson and partner Sem Verbeek of the Netherlands 6-4, 6-3.

At the $25,000 Harlingen Futures, former Tulane star Dominik Koepfer of Germany has reached his first Futures final, beating Texas-Arlington sophomore  Guanarteme Nuez Delgado of Spain 6-3, 6-0 in today's semifinals.  Koepfer will face No. 6 seed Luke Bambridge of Great Britain for the title, after Bambridge defeated No. 8 seed Benjamin Lock of Zimbabwe 6-3, 6-4.

The $50,0000+Hospitality Las Vegas ATP Challenger final will have No. 4 seed Santiago Giraldo of Colombia playing Sam Groth of Australia. Giraldo needed nearly three hours to top No. 8 seed Marco Trungelliti of Italy 7-5, 6-7(2), 7-6(5), while Groth eliminated Sekou Bangoura 7-6(5), 6-4.  The Sunday doubles final will have top seeds Matt Reid of Australia and Brian Baker facing unseeded Bjorn Fratangelo and Denis Kudla.

Speaking of doubles finals, the Stockholm ATP event has gotten a big local boost by the run of the young Ymer brothers, wild cards who have made it to the doubles final.  Twenty-year-old Elias and 18-year-old Mikael will play Michael Venus of New Zealand and Mate Pavic of Croatia in the final Sunday.  Jack Sock and Juan Martin del Potro have advanced to the singles final, with Sock reaching the final there for the second straight year.

Eight of the ITA Division I Regionals were played last week, with 12 more this week. All are scheduled to be completed by Tuesday and I will post all singles final results then.  Bobby Knight is following this weekend's action closely, so visit College Tennis Today for daily updates.