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Saturday, May 11, 2019

NCAA Division I Quarterfinals Set; Subhash Wins $15K Title; Li's Comeback Puts Her in $100K Final; Adams Advances to Pensacola $25K Final; Houghton Sweeps ITF Grade 4 Titles in Florida

The top 8 women's seeds all advanced to the NCAA Division I quarterfinals, with the four in action on Saturday having varying degrees of resistance from their lower-seeded visitors.

Top seed Georgia dropped the doubles point, and Kate Fahey cruised past Katarina Jokic 6-0, 6-4 for the Wolverines second point, but Georgia's depth earned them a 4-2 victory over the No. 16 seeds. Georgia will face No. 8 seed Vanderbilt, who had a much more difficult time with unseeded Texas A&M than the 4-0 final score would indicate.
No. 4 seed South Carolina made it three SEC teams in the top half quarterfinals, cruising past No. 13 seed Southern Cal 4-0, and they will face No. 5 seed Duke, who had blanked No. 12 seed NC State on Friday night.

No. 2 seed North Carolina had its hands full with No. 15 Oklahoma State, but the Tar Heels took it 4-2, with Makenna Jones getting the clinching point with a 6-7(4), 6-4, 6-0 comeback over Katarina Stresnakova at line 1. North Carolina will play No. 7 seed UCLA, who beat Washington 4-0 Friday night.  The other women's quarterfinal on Friday will see defending champion and No. 3 seed Stanford play No. 6 seed Pepperdine.

Two visiting teams did break through to the men's quarterfinals this evening, with No. 10 seed TCU taking out No. 7 Mississippi State 4-2 in Starkville and No. 9 seed North Carolina beating No. 8 seed Southern Cal 4-1 in Los Angeles.

The top six seeds did advance, with most getting through in tight battles. Top seed Ohio State defeated No. 16 seed Columbia 4-1 (the headline saying the Buckeyes trounced the Lions is inaccurate), with John McNally providing the clinching point for Ohio State at line 2. Ohio State will play North Carolina on Thursday in Lake Nona in what is the ACC half of the draw, with three ACC teams in the quarterfinals. No. 5 seed Virginia fought off a comeback by No. 12 seed Stanford to earn a 4-2 victory in a match that went from outdoors to indoors in the middle of the singles matches. Virginia will play defending champion Wake Forest for the fourth time this season, with No. 4 seed Wake holding a 2-1 advantage.

In the bottom half, No. 2 seed Texas had no trouble with unseeded Cal, taking a 4-0 victory in a rain-delayed match in Austin, and the Longhorns will face TCU, who they beat 6-1 in conference play last month, in the quarterfinals.

No. 3 Florida, the only SEC team left in the men's draw, was pushed hard by No. 14 seed Tennessee, but the Gators survived 4-2. As in the conference semifinals last month, when Florida led 3-1 but lost the final three matches to give Tennessee the win, Florida seemed to be in control, but Tennessee forced third sets in two matches before Florida's Duarte Vale earned a comeback victory at line 5 over Preston Touliatos 3-6, 6-3, 7-6(8). Florida will face No. 6 seed Baylor, who beat No. 11 UCLA 4-1 last night in Waco. The Big 12 has three teams in the bottom half quarterfinals.

See the Slam Tennis Championship Central for quarterfinal odds, with the Baylor - Florida match considered the closest of the four men's matches, and Duke - South Carolina the closest of the four women's matches.

Natasha Subhash won her first ITF World Tennis Tour singles title today, with the 17-year-old University of Virginia recruit beating 23-year-old Nina Stadler of Switzerland, the No. 6 seed, 6-2, 6-3 in today's final at the $15,000 tournament in Williamsburg Virginia. Subhash, the No. 3 seed, lost only one set all week, to qualifier Jaedan Brown in the quarterfinals.

It was an all-US junior girls sweep in Williamsburg, with 16-year-old Savannah Broadus and 17-year-old Vanessa Ong taking the doubles title with a 6-3, 6-1 win over fellow teenagers Elaine Chervinsky and Kylie Collins. It's the first professional title for both Broadus and Ong.

The plot has definitely thickened in the USTA's French Open Wild Card Challenge. Whitney Osuigwe had a substantial lead over Lauren Davis coming into the $100,000 ITF World Tennis Tour tournament this week in Bonita Springs Florida. Osuigwe couldn't add to her total points unless she won the event, while Davis knew coming in that winning the title was the only way she could pass Osuigwe. That is exactly the same scenario that confronted Davis late last year, with the Australian Open wild card on the line at the Houston WTA 125, but Davis lost in the final to Peng Shuai of China and Osuigwe claimed the wild card.

Davis's opponent in the final looked as if it would be No. 6 seed Osuigwe, when she had a 6-0, 4-2 lead over wild card Ann Li. But Li fought back, with help from some ill-timed double faults by Osuigwe, earning a 0-6, 7-5, 6-4 semifinal win.  Davis, the No. 4 seed, had beaten Francesca Di Lorenzo 6-2, 6-1 in the semifinals, after Di Lorenzo had to come back to play again after her quarterfinal match against qualifier Louisa Chirico was held over due to rain last night. Chirico served for the match twice and had two match points in the tiebreaker, but Di Lorenzo won the three-hour battle 6-4, 3-6, 7-6(9).

The top two seeds will meet in the final of the $25,000 ITF World Tennis Tour tournament in Pensacola Florida, with No. 2 seed Harrison Adams going for his first singles title of the ITF WTT. The 24-year-old former Texas A&M Aggie defeated former Minnesota star Felix Corwin 6-4, 6-3 to set up a meeting with top seed Juan Pablo Varillas of Peru. Varillas defeated teenager Nicolas Mejia of Colombia 6-4, 6-3.

The doubles title in Pensacola went to No. 3 seeds Alejandro Gomez(Kentucky) of Colombia and Junior Ore(Texas A&M), who defeated unseeded Ian Dempster(NC State/Wake Forest) and Korey Lovett(Alabama/Central Florida) 4-6, 7-6(4), 10-6 in the final.

At the ITF Grade 4 Copa Badia in Coral Gables Florida, India Houghton swept the singles and doubles titles. Houghton, the No. 15 seed, defeated Allura Zamarripa 6-1, 3-6, 6-2 in the singles final for her second ITF Junior Circuit singles title. In doubles, Houghton and Gianna Pielet, the No. 6 seeds, defeated No. 8 seeds Annabelle Xu of Canada and Zamarripa 6-3, 7-6(5) in the final.

Zamarripa wasn't the only player to suffer two finals losses Saturday. Hunter Heck, the No. 2 seed, lost in singles to No. 5 seed Nicolas Zanellato of Brazil 6-3, 7-6(4). He and Alexander Kiefer, the top seeds, then lost to unseeded Joshua Miller and Quinn Snyder 6-7(4), 6-4, 10-3 in the doubles final.


fan said...

Could not see the ball at all at UNC outdoor courts. If TV is to dictate, which was what it was all about regarding the rule change a few years ago, why not 'pander' to TV more efficiently. Have to satisfy the viewer's actual needs. Gotta paint the courts darker, or, gotta use a BLACK ball rather than yellow. In many campuses the cams are also too low, can't see the far side of the net.