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Thursday, September 27, 2018

Quarterfinals Set at Junior Davis and Junior Fed Cup; Courier Steps Down as US Davis Cup Captain; Stearns, Zamarripa Reach Quarterfinals at Hilton Head $15K

The round robin phase of the Junior Davis Cup and Junior Fed Cup concluded today, with half of the teams entered advancing to the quarterfinals. The United States' girls team, seeded No. 1, finished at the top of their group, although Coco Gauff lost at No. 1 singles to Kamila Bartone of Latvia today and the US team of Gauff and Alexa Noel had to win the doubles point to come out on top of their group.

Boys No. 1 seed Italy did not finish at the top of their group. Resting US Open boys finalist Lorenzo Musetti, they lost 2-1 to No. 5 seed Japan, with reigning Junior Orange Bowl 14s champion Shintaro Mochizuki winning at No. 1 singles and in the deciding doubles match. Playing with Shunsuke Mitsui, Mochizuki defeated Musetti and Flavio Cobolli 6-1, 6-3.

The third-seeded US boys won their match today against Uzbekistan, but Great Britain finished second in the group, to No. 7 Brazil, with a 2-1 record.

For more on today's action, see this article from the ITF Junior Circuit website.. Live scoring is available here; the ITF tournament page is here.

Friday's Junior Fed Cup quarterfinals:
USA[1] v Australia[5]
Slovakia v Indonesia
Canada[4] v Russia[3]
Ukraine[2] v Latvia[7]

Friday's Junior Davis Cup quarterfinals:
Japan[5] v Argentina[4]
Brazil[7] v France[2]
Spain[6] v Great Britain
Denmark v Italy[1]

The USTA announced today that Jim Courier would be stepping down as Davis Cup Captain after eight years in that position.  Although the USTA's release doesn't mention it, Courier told the AP in this article that he had decided last year to retire after the completion of this year's competition. Speculation has begun about a replacement for Courier, but I can't see that being decided until the position of head of men's tennis at the USTA has been filled. That position has been open since Brian Boland left this spring.

In Pro Circuit play today, most of the youngest players in the second round at the $15,000 women's tournament in Hilton Head lost, but Peyton Stearns and wild card Allura Zamarripa have advanced to Friday's quarterfinals. Stearns, who turns 17 next month, defeated 16-year-old qualifier Ava Hrastar 6-3, 6-3, and Zamarripa, 16, playing in her first Pro Circuit event defeated 17-year-old qualifier Ruth Marsh 6-1, 6-2. Zamarripa will face top seed Bianca Turati(Texas) of Italy Friday, while Stearns plays No. 3 seed Michaela Bayerlova of the Czech Republic, who is a sophomore at Washington State.

None of the young Southern Californians advanced to the quarterfinals of the $15,000 Futures in Fountain Hills California, with Govind Nanda, Jacob Bullard and Emilio Nava losing in second round play today. UCLA senior Maxime Cressy of France, who reached the final in last week's Futures, knocked off top seed and defending champion Ronnie Schneider 6-2, 6-1.

At the $60,000 Women's event in Templeton California, Americans advancing to the quarterfinals include Madison Brengle[2], Grace Min, Maria Sanchez(USC) and Asia Muhammad. Ann Li is playing Sofya Zhuk of Russia this evening in the day's last second round match. Top seed Taylor Townsend retired trailing Sesil Karatantcheva of Bulgaria 6-0, 3-0.

At the $100,000 ATP Challenger in Tiburon, the four remaining second round matches were completed today, with both Tommy Paul and Michael Mmoh[5] advancing to their quarterfinal meeting via retirements. Brandon Holt(USC) retired trailing Paul 5-0 and Mmoh got his seventh straight Challenger victory when Ernesto Escobedo retired down 6-2, 3-0.  In another all-US quarterfinal Friday, Noah Rubin[6] will face Christopher Eubanks.  Mike Cation is back on commentary for these three California Challengers, with free live streaming available at the ATP website.