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Tuesday, December 28, 2021

Girls 16s Top Seed Falls in First Round at USTA Winter Nationals; Miami Signs Two Top ITF Juniors; New Coach at William and Mary; USC Names New Assistant Coaches

The first round of singles at the USTA 16s and 18s Winter Nationals is complete and already a No. 1 seed has been toppled. Saray Yli-Piipari, a five-star recruit from Georgia, lost to Jane Dunyon, another five-star recruit, who is from Utah. Dunyon has been playing most of her tennis on the UTR circuit this year, while Yli-Piipari, who has also played a few UTR tournaments in Atlanta this fall, has focused more on USTA tournaments.  

Yli-Piipari is the only Top 4 seed to lose in today's action at the USTA National Campus, although G18s No. 4 seed Charlotte Owensby withdrew.  

Below is the list of seeds in all four divisions, with those who lost today noted.

1. Ari Cotoulas
2. Mitchell Lee
3. Callum Markowitz
4. Andrew Ena
5. Aaron Sandler
6. Kaveh Taheri (out rd 1)
7. Declan Galligan
8. Noah McDonald
9. Rahul Sachdev
10. Ian Bracks
11. William Hsieh
12. Jordan Reznik
13. Carter Pate
14. Krish Arora
15. Vincent Yang
16. Kane Kelley

1. Alexander Visser
2. Bjorn Swenson
3. Masato Perera
4. Nicholas Heng
5. Dean Kamenev
6. Kian Vakili
7. Vignesh Gogineni (out rd 1)
8. Chad Miller
9. Landon Ardila
10. Marko Mesarovic
11. Rohan Sachdev
12. Jason Shuler (out rd 1)
13. Grant Lothringer
14. Emon Van Loben Sels
15. Jelani Sarr
16. Ryan Torres

1. Saray Yli-Piipari (out rd 1)
2. Jessica Bernales
3. Ariel Madatali
4. Natasha Rajaram
5. Olivia Center
6. Elena Daskalova
7. Clara Zou
8. Maren Urata (withdrew)
9. Kate Fakih
10. withdrew
11. Emily Deming
12. Andrea De Los Rios Martinez
13. Pearlie Zhang
14. Madeleine Rexroat (out rd 1)
15. Sophia Webster
16. Trinetra Vijayakumar

1. Akari Matsuno
2. Ariana Pursoo
3. Ahmani Guichard
4. Charlotte Owensby (withdrew)
5. Alice Xu
6. Ann Guerry
7. Katie Codd
8. withdrew
9. Jo-Yee Chan (out rd 1)
10. Gayathri Krishnan
11. Reese Miller
12. Sophia Wang
13. Bayley Sheinin (out rd 1)
14. Emma Charney
15. Audrey Spencer (out rd 1)
16. Kinaa Graham

The 12s and 14s Winter Nationals first round of singles is still ongoing. They start with doubles, and with the two-hour time difference and matches starting as late as 6:30 p.m. Mountain Time, it won't be possible to update the seed report tonight.
There have been many Division I signings since I last reported on those that were announced during Signing Week in November, and I'm sure others are forthcoming in the next couple of weeks, but I wanted to highlight a few of the top ITF juniors who have made commitments recently.

The University of Miami announced that Tatyana Nikolenko of Kazakhstan will be joining the women's team next month. Nikolenko is currently 135 in the ITF junior rankings but has been as high as 53 earlier this year.  The Miami men's team announced the signing of Martin Katz of Belgium, currently 86 in the ITF rankings with a high of 36 earlier this year. Katz, a finalist in boys doubles at Roland Garros this year, will join the team in January.

Oklahoma has signed Anchisa Chanta of Thailand, who has a ITF junior career high of 107 and is currently 688 in the WTA rankings, with a title at a $15K in Tunisia this fall. Chanta will join the Sooners for the dual match season next month.

Two weeks ago, Ohio State announced the signing of one of the top Americans, with 2019 Kalamazoo 16s champion Alexander Bernard, currently No. 38 in the ITF junior rankings with a high of 9, joining the Buckeyes next fall.

Notre Dame hasn't made an official announcement, but Parsa Nemati's tweet notes that ITF junior No. 47 Sebastian Dominko of Slovenia has signed with the Fighting Irish for the fall of 2022.

The other news in college tennis this month is coaching hires, with William and Mary naming Jessica Giuggioli women's head coach. Giuggioli, who played at Kentucky and Missouri, was previously head coach at Radford. 

The University of Southern California has two new assistants with former Columbia men's assistant Rich Bonfiglio joining the men's program and former Loyola Marymount associate head coach Elizabeth Begley joining the women's program.