Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Svajda Advances, Sandgren Defaulted at Cary Challenger; Qualifying Complete at Men's $15K in Champaign; Kentucky's Draxl and Virginia's Navarro Top ITA D-I Preseason Rankings

The first round is complete at the ATP Challenger 80 in Cary North Carolina, with an abrupt end to the tournament for top seed Tennys Sandgren, who was defaulted in the second game of his match tonight with Christopher Eubanks. Although it wasn't visible on the live stream, Sandgren lost a point on an unforced error and after a misdirected ball toss to him by a ball boy prior to the next point, he swatted a ball, which appeared to hit a line umpire. The supervisor was called to the court and Sandgren was defaulted, leading 1-0.

In a less dramatic start to the day, two-time Kalamazoo 18s champion Zachary Svajda advanced to the second round when Stefan Kozlov retired trailing 7-5, 2-0.  Svajda will play North Carolina junior Rinky Hijikata of Australia, who qualified yesterday and today defeated No. 5 seed Jason Jung(Michigan) 6-4, 6-4. Alex Kovacevic(Illinois) is another qualifier who advanced to the second round, beating wild card Garrett Johns of Duke 7-6(3), 6-4. Kovacevic will play No. 2 seed Denis Kudla in the second round Wednesday.

Former ITF World No. 1 junior Shintaro Mochizuki of Japan, still just 18 years old, is the third qualifier into the second round, with the 2019 Wimbledon boys champion defeating Ulises Blanch 7-5, 6-1 today. 

The other USTA Pro Circuit event this week is also for men, a $15, 000 tournament in Champaign Illinois. Qualifying was completed today, with seven of the eight qualifiers current college players: Blaise Bicknell(Florida), Drew Baird(UCLA), Tyler Zink(Oklahoma State), Jake Van Emburgh(Ohio State), Emile Hudd(Tennessee), Tristan McCormick(Georgia) and Alexander Petrov(Illinois).

The top US juniors went from New York to Champaign, with US Open quarterfinalist Victor Lilov, Dali Blanch and Alexander Bernard using the junior reserve program for entry and Samir Banerjee receiving a wild card.  The other wild cards went to Illinois players Lucas Horve, Olivier Stuart and Hunter Heck. Karl Ozlins, a freshman at Illinois, got in on his own ranking.

Dusty Boyer(Nebraska) is the top seed, with Martin Damm seeded second.

All 16 first round matches are scheduled for Wednesday.

It's been a week since the ITA preseason rankings came out, but when I'm covering a major tournament in person, some things have to wait. Below are the Top 20 in singles for men and women and the Top 8 doubles teams. While these preseason rankings shouldn't be taken too seriously(e.g. no Big 10 men's player is listed until No. 20, and he's a transfer), it is a way to get some official confirmation of who transferred where this summer. It appears that Hijikata is taking the fall off, as he is not in the rankings, but is on the North Carolina roster; I'm sure there are other top players who will not be included until well into the dual match season in 2022.

This is not an comprehensive list, but ranked men and women who will be playing for different teams in 2021-22 include:

Matej Vocel Oklahoma State to Ohio State
Hamish Stewart Tulane to Georgia
Tyler Zink Georgia to Oklahoma State
James Story Memphis to South Carolina
Richard Ciamarra Notre Dame to Texas
Barnaby Smith Texas A&M to Florida State
Bar Botzer Wake Forest to Virginia
Emile Hudd Oklahoma State to Tennessee
Matias Siimar Michigan to Florida

Janic Tjen Oregon to Pepperdine 
Victoria Flores Georgia Tech to Pepperdine
Ayana Akli Maryland to South Carolina 
Bunyawi Thamchaiwat Oklahoma State to San Diego State
Emma Shelton South Carolina to Florida
Layne Sleeth Florida to Oklahoma

Men's Preseason Top 20 Division I Singles:
1. Liam Draxl, Kentucky
2. Sam Riffice, Florida
3. Daniel Rodrigues, South Carolina
4. Duarte Vale, Florida
5. Adam Walton, Tennessee
6. Johannus Monday, Tennessee
7. Matias Soto, Baylor
8. Luc Fomba, TCU
9. Adrian Boitan, Baylor
10. Eliot Spizzirri, Texas
11. Finn Reynolds, Mississippi
12. Trent Bryde, Georgia
13. Gabriel Diallo, Kentucky
14. Andy Andrade, Florida
15. Philip Henning, Georgia
16. Connor Thomson, South Carolina
17. Micah Braswell, Texas
18. Juan Carlos Aguilar, TCU
19. Tyler Stice, Auburn
20. Matej Vocel, Ohio State

1. Emma Navarro, Virginia
2. Abigail Forbes, UCLA
3. Janice Tjen, Pepperdine 
4. McCartney Kessler, Florida
5. Georgia Drummy, Duke
6. Peyton Stearns, Texas
7. Irina Cantos, Ohio State
8. Natasha Subhash, Virginia
9. Buyawi Thamchaiwat, San Diego State
10. Tatiana Makarova, Texas A&M
11. Viktoryia Kanapatskaya, Syracuse
12. Alexa Noel, Iowa
13. Victoria Flores, Pepperdine
14. Vanessa Wong, Washington
15. Meg Kowalski, Georgia
16. Isaella Pfennig, Miami
17. Haley Giavara, Cal
18. Salma Ewing, USC
19. Lea Ma, Georgia
20. Valeriya Zeleva, Central Florida

1. Adam Walton and Pat Harper, Tennessee
2. Eliot Spizzirri and Siem Woldeab, Texas
3. Bogdan Pavel and Trey Hilderbrand, Central Florida
4. Daniel Rodriguez and Connor Thomson, South Carolina
5. David Stevenson and Oscar Cutting, Memphis
6. Florian Broska and Gregor Ramskogler, Mississippi State
7. Tad Maclean and Finn Murgett, Auburn
8. Marcus McDaniel and Andres Martin, Georgia Tech

1.Ivana Corley and Carmen Corley, Oklahoma
2. Chloe Beck and Karolina Berankova, Duke
3. Tatiana Makarova and Jayci Goldsmith, Texas A&M
4. Natasha Subhash and Sofia Munera, Virginia
5. Esther Adeshina and Daria Kuczer, Tennessee
6. Gia Cohen and Ava Hrastar, Georgia Tech
7. Bronte Murgett and Marta Oliveira, Missouri
8. Anna Brylin and Brooke Killingsworth, Wake Forest


Contributor said...

#105 Francois Musitelli - Old Dominion to Kentucky

#79 Matthis Ross - Virginia Tech to Texas A&M

#70 Lleyton Cronje - VCU to UCF

#63 Emmanuel Coste - Oregon to UC Irvine

#57 Olle Wallin - Charlotte to Texas Tech

#52 Fabien Salle - Louisville to Arizona State

#18 Juan Carlos Aguilar - Texas A&M to TCU

#41 Carly Briggs - Tennessee to Florida

#49 Sophie Abrams - Memphis to NC State

#61 Sedona Gallagher - Washington to Arizona State

#71 Lesedi Jacobs - Kentucky to Florida State

#73 Sara Nayar - Colorado to NC State

#76 Marina Alcaide - Florida International to Old Dominion