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Thursday, January 8, 2015

Kozlov, Fritz, Ponwith and Baughman Make Futures Quarterfinals; Subhash Reaches Christmas Cup Semis; US Champion Assured at G1 Coffee Bowl

The last time Stefan Kozlov and Taylor Fritz met, in the quarterfinals of Kalamazoo last August, Kozlov took a 6-2, 6-2 victory, with Fritz playing on a sprained ankle.  On Friday, they will meet for the first time in a Pro Circuit event, the quarterfinals of the $15,000 Futures in LA, after both picked up wins over players with UCLA ties.

Fritz, a wild card, defeated UCLA sophomore Mackenzie McDonald 6-3, 6-4, saving all five break points he faced in opening set, including two serving for the set at 5-3.  In the second set, aided by two McDonald double faults, Fritz broke in the first game and had a 3-1 lead, but McDonald came back to make it 3-3.  But the 19-year-old played a dreadful game at 4-all, getting broken at love, and Fritz served out the match at love.

On the court next to Fritz, Kozlov was having more difficulty with qualifying Clay Thompson, who completed his eligibility at UCLA last spring.  Thompson was doing his usual serve and volley thing, and Kozlov was not making all his passing shots. Up 3-0 in the third set, Kozlov lost the next three games, but he regrouped to win the next three, breaking Thompson on a perfect pass at 3-4, 30-40, eventually posting a 6-2, 2-6, 6-3 victory.

The third teen in the quarterfinals is 16-year-old qualifier Nathan Ponwith, who lost the first three games of the match to wild card Eric Johnson, a USC senior, but came back for a 7-5, 6-0 win. Ponwith, who beat No. 2 seed Daniel Nguyen on Wednesday, will play No. 8 seed Mitchell Krueger in the quarterfinals Friday.

Live streaming of Friday's matches is available here.

At the $10,000 Futures in Plantation, one teen remains, with wild card Deiton Baughman reaching the quarterfinals with a 6-2, 6-3 win over No. 5 seed Patrick Rosenholm of Sweden. Baughman will play former Texas A&M star Jeff Dadamo in the quarterfinals Friday.

At the Christmas Cup in Russia, unseeded Natasha Subhash has reached the semifinals, defeating No. 3 seed Taisya Pachkaleva of Russia 6-4, 6-2. She will play No. 7 seed Damilla Rakhimova of Russia Friday.  Subhash and Kacie Harvey, unseeded in doubles, have also reached the semifinals.  For complete results, see the Tennis Europe tournament site.

At the Grade 1 Coffee Bowl in Costa Rica, all four girls semifinalists are from the United States, assuring that the title, won by CiCi Bellis last year, will stay in American hands. Top seed Sonya Kenin defeated Claire Liu 6-3, 6-1 and will play No. 4 seed Michaela Gordon, who beat Jaclyn Switkes 6-0, 6-0.  No. 6 seed Olivia Hauger, a 6-2, 6-0 winner over No. 13 seed Gabby Pollner, will play No. 2 seed Usue Arconada, who beat No. 5 seed Emily Arbuthnott of Great Britain 6-3, 6-2 in a featured night match.  Speaking of Bellis, she was featured in this ESPN W article yesterday.

In the boys draw, No. 4 seed Ulises Blanch has reached the semifinals, defeating unseeded Maxime Mora of France 6-1, 6-3.  He will play No. 2 seed Miomir Kecmanovic of Serbia Friday.  No. 5 seed Casper Ruud of Norway defeated Sami Kirberg 6-2, 6-1 and he will play the winner of tonight's quarterfinal match between Michael Genender and Israel's Yshai Oliel, the No. 16 seed.