Schedule a training visit to the prestigious Junior Tennis Champions Center in College Park, MD by clicking on the banner above

Wednesday, August 3, 2022

July Aces; Hovde Turns Pro; Gorzny and Michelsen Top Seeds in Kalamazoo 18s Doubles, 13 Michigan Players Competing in Singles; Wolf Beats Shapovalov at ATP Citi Open

As I mentioned Monday, I wasn't able to fit everyone I would have liked into the July edition of my Aces for the Tennis Recruiting Network. That's been a frequent problem lately, which is a sign of how much success college players have been having on the Pro Circuits. Here are the 18 performances from July that did make the cut, which include not just Pro Circuit titles but also the first ATP titles for a pair of former collegians.

One of last month's Aces, Roehampton and Wimbledon champion Liv Hovde, has signed with GSE Worldwide, a sports management and marketing agency, meaning she will not be playing college tennis. The 16-year-old, who is currently No. 4 in the ITF junior rankings, is the youngest client of the agency, which also represents Leylah Fernandez, Sloane Stephens, Paul Badosa, Grigor Dimitrov and Sofia Kenin. 

After she won the Wimbledon girls title last month, Hovde was pursued by many of the top agencies before deciding to sign with John Tobias and Chris McCormack. 

The USTA Boys 18s doubles draws will be out later tonight; here are the Top 16 seeds, all of whom will receive first round byes but will be playing second round matches late Friday.

1. Sebastian Gorzny and Alex Michelsen
2. Nicholas Godsick and Ethan Quinn
3. Aidan Kim and Cooper Williams
4. Samir Banerjee and Ozan Colak
5. Jack Anthrop and Michael Zheng
6. Nishesh Basavareddy and Bryce Nakashima
7. Landon Ardila and Lucas Brown
8. Kyle Kang and Learner Tien
9. Hudson Rivera and Braden Shick
10. Nikita Filin and Alexander Razeghi
11. Kabeer Kapasi and Connor Smillie
12. Brendan Boland and Nico Jamison
13. Jonah Braswell and Sebastian Sec
14. Alexander Frusina and Joseph Phillips
15. Kaylan Bigun and Evan Wen
16. Meecah Bigun and Preston Stearns

The Kalamazoo Gazette has once again published an in-depth look at the Michigan players competing this year in the USTA boys 18s and 16s Nationals, with seven playing in the 18s and six in the 16s. As you can gather from the photos, the paper also provides thorough coverage of the Michigan State High School Championships every spring(girls) and fall(boys).

With so much going on in junior tennis right now, I haven't had much time to focus on the three ATP/WTA events happening this week in the United States, but it's been a great week for JJ Wolf. The former Ohio State All-American broke into the ATP Top 100 for the first time this week, received a wild card into the ATP 500 Citi Open in Washington DC and has now reached the round of 16, with wins over qualifier Taro Daniel of Japan on Monday and No. 6 seed Denis Shapovalov today. Wolf's 6-2, 6-7(5), 6-3 win over the Canadian is his second over a Top 25 opponent, with his first earlier this year in Acapulco over Lorenzo Sonego of Italy. He will play No. 9 seed Holger Rune of Denmark next.  Wolf was just outside the original cut for the US Open main draw, but this run should assure he gets a wild card, regardless of whether he wins the USTA's Wild Card Challenge.

Wolf joins Maxime Cressy(UCLA), Taylor Fritz[3] and Sebastian Korda in the round of 16, with Tommy Paul[14], Reilly Opelka[4], Denis Kudla, Chris Eubanks(Georgia Tech) and Frances Tiafoe[10] still yet to play today. At least two more will advance with Tiafoe playing Eubanks and Opelka facing Kudla.