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Thursday, May 18, 2023

Rain Postpones Men's D-I Quarterfinals Until Friday, Men's Final Moved to Sunday; D-III Women's Singles and Doubles Seeds; 16-year-olds Yamakita and Osuigwe Reach $25K Quarterfinals in Delaware; Kim Moves on at Pensacola $25K; Grant Advances at ITF J300 in Italy

The NCAA has been very lucky the past two times the USTA National Campus in Lake Nona has hosted the Division I championships there, with no rain in 2019 and only a brief delay in 2021. That luck has run out in 2023, with the men's quarterfinals now postponed until Friday morning after a rain storm moved into the area around 6:30 p.m. With the decision to start two matches at 5 p.m., followed by two more at 8 p.m. on each of the four days of the team championships, there was absolutely no wiggle room in the schedule should the typical Florida afternoon thunderstorms materialize, and now the worst case scenario has happened.

The 11:45 p.m. finish of the North Carolina State-Iowa State women's quarterfinal Wednesday, which was not delayed by any rain, was to be expected when competitive matches are played back-to-back.

In the action that did take place Thursday, the doubles points were decided in the first two quarterfinals, with Texas taking two of three from South Carolina to take a 1-0 lead and Kentucky saving four match points in the 7-6(9) tiebreaker at line 1 win to clinch the point for the Wildcats. 

None of the first sets had been decided in the Texas-South Carolina match, although Micah Braswell had four set points when the lightning delay began. Heavy rain followed and the postponement came around 8:50 p.m.  The matches in progress will resume at 10:00 a.m. and the Michigan-TCU and Georgia-Ohio State matches are scheduled not before 12:30 p.m.

At 9:20 this evening the NCAA announced that the women's semifinals will be played as scheduled Friday evening, with the  final on Saturday as previously planned. The men's semifinals will now be Saturday and the men's final on Sunday. I'm not sure what this means for Tennis Channel coverage, which was to provide a men's and a women's semifinal Friday and both finals Saturday. Check my twitter feed tomorrow for more details regarding times and streaming coverage as they are announced Friday.

Cracked Racquets will have coverage of the men's quarterfinals Friday at its YouTube Channel.

The men's D-III singles quarterfinals are set, with one notable upset. No. 2 seed Tristan Bradley of Bowdoin lost in the first round to Abhi Ramireddy of Washington-St. Louis 6-3, 0-6, 6-1. Top seed James Hopper of Case Western won both his matches in straight sets. There was no scoring box on the live stream for the D-III men's second round matches today; I hope that's being corrected for tomorrow morning's quarterfinals. Links to streaming and scoring can be found here.

The women's D-III singles and doubles get underway Friday, with the same schedule as the men today: two rounds of singles and one round of doubles. Notable that the University of Chicago No. 1, Sylwia Mikos, is not in the singles draw, but is playing doubles, where she and Shianna Guo are the top seeds. 

Women's D-III seeds:

1. Olivia Soffer, Babson
2. Angie Zhou, Pomona-Pitzer
3. Nika Vesely, Wesleyan
4. Eleni Lazaridou, Kenyon
5. Hannah Kassaie, Case Western
6. Alisha Chulani, Claremont Mudd Scripps
7. Sarah Pertsemlidis, MIT
8. Sahana Raman, Middlebury

1. Shianna Guo/Sylwia Mikos, Chicago
2. Hannah Kassaie/Lily McCloskey, Case Western
3. Emily Kantrovitz/Ana Cristina Perez, Emory
4. Danna Taylor/Crystal Zhou, Carnegie Mellon

Two 16-year-olds have advanced to the quarterfinals of the women's $25,000 USTA Pro Circuit tournament in Bethany Beach Delaware, advancing via retirements from their opponents. Seventeen-year-old Wimbledon girls champion Liv Hovde, the No. 3 seed, also reached the quarterfinals after beating Paris Corley(LSU) 6-4, 6-2.

Mia Yamakita had played in just four USTA Pro Circuit main draws prior to this week and had not won a match, but after qualifying, she defeated No. 8 seed Lauren Proctor(Winthrop) 6-0, 7-6(3) in the first round and 2-3 ret. over Jasmin Jebawy of Germany today. Yamakita will face Hovde Friday. 

Victoria Osuigwe, the younger sister of 2017 ITF World Junior Champion Whitney Osuigwe, had played nine Pro Circuit tournaments and picked up three wins prior to this week, including one at the $60K in Naples last week, but this is the first time she has been in a Pro Circuit quarterfinal. Osuigwe was leading No. 7 seed Katarina Jokic(Georgia) of Serbia 7-6(8), 4-0 when Jokic retired. She plays No. 4 seed Hina Inoue next.

The $60,000 women's Pro Circuit tournament in Pelham Alabama got back on schedule today after rain yesterday, with Whitney Osuigwe, the No. 5 seed, also reaching the quarterfinals. Osuigwe will face No. 2 seed Robin Anderson(UCLA) and the other all-American quarterfinal will feature No. 3 seed Jamie Loeb(North Carolina) and No. 7 seed Grace Min. Former Princeton star Victoria Hu, who is 13-10 this year in USTA Pro Circuit events, all $25K and above, defeated No. 8 seed Makenna Jones(North Carolina) 6-2, 6-1 and will play top seed Renata Zarazua of Mexico in the quarterfinals.

The men's $25,000 USTA Pro Circuit in Pensacola Florida also had rain delays and postponements yesterday, but the quarterfinals are set now, and they include 18-year-old Florida recruit Aidan Kim. The unseeded Kim defeated Tyler Stice(Auburn) and Arvid Nordqvist of Sweden in straight sets today to reach his first quarterfinal at the $25K level. Top seed Tennys Sandgren(Tennessee) was beaten in the first round today by Lorenzo Claverie of Italy 6-7(3), 6-4, 6-1. 

With the J500 in Milan next week, several Americans played the J300 in Santa Croce Italy this week, but only Tyra Grant remains in contention for a title there, after Kaylan Bigun[8] and Roy Horovitz[6] lost in the quarterfinals today. The 15-year-old Grant, who speaks fluent Italian(her mother is from Italy and they lived there until recently), defeated No. 8 seed Iva Ivanova of Bulgaria 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 to reach her first J300 semifinal. Grant will face top seed Tereza Valentova of the Czech Republic, who is playing in only her fourth tournament of the year.


College Fan said...

Incredible comeback by UK, saving simultaneous match points on courts 1 & 2. UVA served at 5-3, 40-40 at the same time on both courts. Montes served at 5-3 on 1. He was down 15-40 and brought it back to 40-40. At the same time, Rodesch served for the set at 5-3. Rodesch had triple match point at 40-15. UK won the deuce point on both courts at the same time. On #2, UK staged a furious comeback from 1-5, saving 8 match points before finally losing on a double fault at 5-6, 40-40. UK’s #2 team was also down triple match point (two games in a row) at 4-5, 15-40 before holding serve. Mercer saved 2 more match points from 5-6, 15-40 prior to the unfortunate double fault. At #1, UK saved the match point down 3-5 and then a handful of match points in the TB before finally clinching an improbable doubles point. Tremendous fight by Big Blue to turn things around.