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Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Five Americans Qualify for Miami Open, Liu, Anisimova Post First Round Wins; Top Seeds Out at ITF Grade 4 in Newport Beach; UNC Women, Wake Men Remain No. 1

Five Americans advanced to the main draw of the Miami Open today in Key Biscayne: Bjorn Fratangelo, Michael Mmoh, Sonya Kenin, Alison Riske and Danielle Collins.

Fratangelo, the No. 11 seed, beat No. 20 seed Carlos Berlocq of Argentina 7-6(6), 6-4 and Mmoh defeated No. 2 seed seed Mirza Basic of Bosnia, who has a current ATP ranking of 75, 7-5, 7-6(2).  Patrick Kypson lost to Cameron Norrie of Great Britain 6-7(5), 6-3, 6-1, Denis Kudla lost to Calvin Hemery of France 4-6, 6-4, 7-5, Ernesto Escobedo lost to John Millman of Australia 6-1, 6-2 and Mackenzie McDonald lost to Darian King of Barbados 2-6, 6-4, 6-4.

Riske advanced when Oceane Dodin of France retired trailing 6-1, Collins defeated Jana Cepelova of Slovakia 7-6(3), 6-4 and Kenin came back for a 3-6, 6-4, 6-3 win over Ysaline Bonaventure of Belgium. Nicole Gibbs lost to Natalia Vikhlyantseva of Russia 7-6(3), 6-4.

Four American women played their first round main draw matches today, and all advanced.  Claire Liu picked up her first WTA main draw win (not counting WTA 125 events) against fellow teenager and wild card Whitney Osuigwe 6-3, 6-1.  Liu, the reigning Wimbledon girls champion, beat Osuigwe last spring in the Easter Bowl ITF semifinals, but had lost to her twice since then, in the French Open girls final and the quarterfinals of the USTA National 18s in San Diego.

Amanda Anisimova, the reigning US Open girls champion, defeated Qiang Wang of China 6-3, 1-6, 6-2 to record her fourth WTA Premier level victory of the month. Next up for the 16-year-old Floridian is No. 3 seed Garbine Muguruza of Spain.

Christina McHale advanced when Kaia Kanepi of Estonia had to retire leading 3-1 in the first set due to an injury.  Wild card Bernarda Pera beat Lara Arruabarrena of Spain 7-5, 6-4.

The ITF Junior Circuit returns to the United States this week for the first time since December's Orange Bowl, with a Grade 4 in Newport Beach California.  As is frequently the case with this event, which used to precede the International Spring Championships, but is now the week before the Easter Bowl, the seeding doesn't have much predictive power. Many top Southern Californian juniors don't play ITF tournaments, so they don't have the requisite rankings for seeding, but are competitive with those who do.  Both No. 1 seeds lost in the first round on Monday, with wild card Siem Woldeab beating Daniel Moreno of Mexico 7-5, 6-1 and Vivian Ovrootsky defeating top seed Mell Reasco Gonzalez of Ecuador 7-5, 6-4.

The latest ITA Division I team and individual rankings are out, with the North Carolina women and Wake Forest men remaining on top. The TCU men have made a big jump this week, going from 32 to 11 and they are currently playing No. 6 Texas A&M in College Station.  Martin Redlicki of UCLA has returned to the top spot in singles. 

The Texas women have moved into the Top 10 this week at No. 8, with Bianca Turati of Texas retaining her No. 1 position in the singles rankings.  Mississippi State, unranked last week, moved up to 24 on the basis of the wins over Vanderbilt and Kentucky. Paige Hourigan and Kenya Jones of Georgia Tech have taken over the top spot in the women's doubles rankings.

Women’s ITA Division I Top 10 Team March 20, 2018 (previous ranking of March 13 in parentheses)
1. North Carolina (1)
2. Pepperdine (4)
3. Vanderbilt (2)
4. Duke (3)
5. Northwestern (5)
6. Georgia Tech (6)
7. Illinois (7)
8. Texas (12)
9. Georgia (8)
10. South Carolina (10)

Women’s Singles: (previous ranking of March 6 in parentheses)
1. Bianca Turati, Texas (1)
2. Aliona Bolsova Zadoinov, Florida Atlantic (6)
3. Anastasia Rychagova, Kansas (3)
4. Andrea Lazaro, Florida International (4)
5. Fernanda Contreras, Vanderbilt (5)
6. Katarina Jokic, Georgia (2)
7. Samantha Harris, Duke (7)
8. Gabriela Knutson, Syracuse (11)
9. Estela Perez-Somarriba, Miami (18)
10. Michaela Gordon, Stanford (17)

Women’s Doubles:
1. Paige Hourigan and Kenya Jones, Georgia Tech (4)
2. Jessie Aney and Alexa Graham, North Carolina (2)
3. Emily Arbuthnott and Michaela Gordon, Stanford (3)
4. Erin Larner and Maddie Lipp, Northwestern (1)
5. Samantha Harris and Kelly Chen, Duke (6)

Men’s ITA Division I Top 10 Team March 13, 2018 (previous ranking of March 6 in parentheses)
1. Wake Forest (1)
2. Ohio State (4)
3. Stanford (2)
4. UCLA (3)
5. North Carolina (5)
6. Texas A&M (6)
7. Illinois (7)
8. Michigan (8)
9. Florida (12)
10. USC (11)

Men’s Singles: (previous ranking of March 6 in parentheses)
1. Martin Redlicki, UCLA (3)
2. William Blumberg, North Carolina (1)
3. Nuno Borges, Mississippi State (4)
4. Mikael Torpegaard, Ohio State (2)
5. Alex Knight, Michigan (5)
6. Arthur Rinderknech, Texas A&M (10)
7. Petros Chrysochos, (8)
8. Alfredo Perez, Florida (7)
9. Brandon Holt, USC (12)
10. Tom Fawcett, Stanford (11)

Men’s Doubles:
1. Johannes Ingildsen and Alfredo Perez, Florida (1)
2. Petros Chrysochos and Skander Mansouri, Wake Forest (5)
3. William Blumberg and Robert Kelly, North Carolina (6)
4. Rodrigo Banzer and Leonardo Telles, Texas (3)
5. Chema Carranza and Josef Dodridge, Wisconsin (4)