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Thursday, May 11, 2023

Ngounoue's Winning Streak Continues at Orlando $25K; D-I Super Regionals Begin Friday with Six Matches; My Guest Appearance on the Talking Tennis Southern Style Podcast; NIT Fields Set; New ITA Board Announced

After winning both ITF J300s in Southern California back in March, Clervie Ngounoue returned to the USTA Pro Circuit this week in Orlando, where she now lives. The 16-year-old, No. 5 in the ITF junior rankings, has extended her winning streak to 13 by reaching the quarterfinals of the $25,000 tournament at the USTA National Campus

Ngounoue defeated No. 4 seed Hina Inoue 6-3, 6-4 and will play another teenager in the quarterfinals: 18-year-old Cadence Brace of Canada. Brace, the No. 6 seed, defeated Ganna Poznikhirenko of Ukraine 6-4, 6-2. Other Americans advancing to the quarterfinals are wild card Katerina Stewart, Victoria Hu(Princeton) and Dalayna Hewitt. No. 3 seed Liv Hovde lost to 2019 NCAA finalist Katerina Jokic(Georgia) of Serbia 6-4, 4-6, 6-3.

At the women's $60,000 USTA Pro Circuit tournament in Naples Florida, No. 1 Caroline Dolehide and No. 2 Kayla Day have reached the quarterfinals, as has unseeded Sophie Chang and qualifier Mccartney Kessler(Florida).

The quarterfinalists in the Division I NCAA Team Championships will be decided over the next two days. Cracked Racquets will be providing coverage of most, but not all, 16 regionals on their YouTube channel. Links to live scoring and team specific live streams can be found at this ITA Super Regional page. CollegeTennisRanks.com has added a new scoreboard feature allowing you to track all the regional final scores here. The ITA also announced today that Cracked Racquets will be providing coverage throughout the NCAAs, including Divisions II and III, concluding with the D-I singles and doubles championships. 

Friday May 12

Southern California[10] at Michigan[7] 4 p.m. (rescheduled to 1 p.m.)

UCLA at Iowa State[12] 2 p.m.
Tennessee[14] at Texas A&M[2] 3 p.m.
Ohio State[10] at Stanford[6] 4 p.m.
Florida[16] at North Carolina[1] 5 p.m.
Oklahoma[13 at Georgia[4] 5 p.m.

Saturday May 13

Pepperdine[9] at Texas[8] 1 p.m.
Virginia[12] at Michigan[5] 1 p.m.
Auburn at NC State[3] 3 p.m. (rescheduled for noon)

Arizona[14] at Ohio State[3] noon
Duke[12] at Virginia[5] 1 p.m.
Stanford at Kentucky[4] 2 p.m.
Harvard[11] at Georgia[6] 2 p.m.
South Carolina[9] at Tennessee[8] 3 p.m.
North Carolina[16] at Texas[1] 4 p.m.
Mississippi State[15] at TCU[2] 4 p.m. (rescheduled for 1 pm)

Last week I spoke with Sam Crenshaw, the host of the USTA Southern section's Talking Tennis Southern Style podcast, about the upcoming NCAA tournament. He was most curious about the teams in that part of the country, but we did discuss other contenders, as well as why Division I college tennis doesn't have the same visibility as other NCAA spring sports. The apple link is below; my segment is 15 minutes in. 


While the Division I and Division III NCAA team championships will be going on, the NIT, organized by Universal Tennis, will make its debut with eight men's and eight women's teams playing their tournaments at the Peachtree City Tennis Center in Georgia. The tournament, which features the standard D-I format, runs from May 17-20 and will broadcast on Amazon Prime. 

The men's teams participating are: Vanderbilt[1], Denver[2], Liberty[3], UC-Davis[4], Reinhardt, UC-San Diego, Army and Citadel.

The women's teams participating are: TCU[1], Colorado[2], Stetson[3], Appalachian State[4], UC-San Diego, Cal State- Northridge, Cal Poly, Wyoming.

Yesterday's release from Universal Tennis announcing the draw is here.

The ITA announced its new board of directors yesterday, with an interesting addition in Fernando Sanchez, a senior vice president at the ATP. Sanchez played collegiate tennis at Virginia Commonwealth. With the new collaboration with the ATP Challenger Circuit that will provide wild cards for those finishing in the Top 20 of the final D-I college singles rankings, having an ATP representative on the board should prove invaluable going forward.