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Monday, October 3, 2016

Hilderbrand, Zein Win ITF Grade 5 Titles in Austin, Broerman Claims Singles Championship in Dominican Republic; Ho Sweeps D3 Central Regional Titles; ITA All-American Qualifying Continues

Two ITF Junior events that finished over the weekend had Americans as champions, with Texans Marlee Zein and Trey Hilderbrand winning the singles titles at the Grade 5 in Austin, Texas, and Catherine Broerman claiming the singles title at the Grade 5 in the Dominican Republic.

The 16-year-old Hilderbrand, seeded No. 4, defended his 2015 title in Austin, beating 14-year-old Zane Khan, seeded No. 13, 6-4, 6-3 in the final.  Top seed Zein, also 16, defeated No. 9 seed Ivana Corley 6-2, 4-6, 6-2 to capture her first ITF junior title.

Hilderbrand fell short of a sweep of the titles in Austin when he and Boris Kozlov, the top seeds, fell to No. 5 seeds Brady Draheim and Bradley Frye 4-6, 6-4, 10-5.  The girls doubles title went to Jessica Aragon and Delara Zamani, who beat Hada Chang and Abigail Chiu 6-4, 2-6, 10-5 in a contest between two unseeded teams.

This week the US ITF Junior Circuit moves to Wichita Falls, Texas for the Grade 4, with the Grade B1 Pan American Closed in Tulsa following on October 10th.  Ray Ho of Taiwan and Katya Townsend are the top seeds in Wichita Falls.

The 15-year-old Broerman, seeded sixth, defeated No. 8 seed Shelly Yaloz 3-6, 7-5, 6-2 in the final in Santo Domingo, claiming her first ITF junior title. Yaloz also dropped the doubles final, with she and partner Rose Dickson falling to Maria Aguiar and Lauren Anzalotta-Kynoch of Puerto Rico 6-3, 6-1.

The Division III Women's ITA Central Regional wrapped up today in Kalamazoo, with Washington University-St. Louis's Rebecca Ho sweeping the titles. The top-seeded Ho, who won the Central regional title as a sophomore in 2014, defeated University of Chicago freshman Marjorie Antohi twice, taking the singles final 6-4, 6-3 over the No. 9 seed, and teaming with Kaylan Griffith for the doubles title.  Ho and Griffith, the top seeds, defeated No. 9 seeds Antohi and Estefania Navarro 6-4, 6-3 for the doubles title.  Ho and Griffith earned All-American status with the titles and spots in the small college nationals, now called the ITA Oracle Cup, in Surprise, Arizona October 13-16.

The Division III Regionals should all be completed today, with results available at the ITA tournament page.

The first two Division I majors of the season begin on Thursday, with the men in Tulsa and the women in Pacific Palisades.  Pre-qualifying was completed Sunday, with eight women advancing to the qualifying with three wins over the weekend, including notable freshmen Ashley Lahey of Pepperdine, Ena Shibahara of UCLA and Meible Chi of Duke.

Qualifying for the women begins Tuesday, with eight women moving into the main draw with three more victories over the next two days. Top newcomer/freshman Sara Daavettila of North Carolina will play her first round qualifying match against qualifier Josie Kuhlman of Florida.

The men's pre-qualifying is a much bigger production, with 16 men advancing into qualifying, which began today.  Freshmen advancing out of pre-qualifying with four wins over the weekend included Columbia's Alex Keyser and Jackie Tang, Yale's Dylan King, Texas's Christian Sigsgaard and North Carolina's Joshua Peck, with all but Tang also winning their first round qualifying matches today. Other notable freshmen first round winners, who were given spots in the qualifying draw, are Nathan Ponwith of Georgia, Brandon Holt of USC and Robert Levine of Duke. With a 64-player main draw compared to the women's 32-player main draw, there are more room for qualifiers, and 16 will advance.  Bobby Knight has the complete results, as well as Universal Tennis Rating numbers for all the ITA All-American participants at his College Tennis Today blog.