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The 2016 NCAA Singles and Doubles Champion and recently named ITA National Player of the Year Mackenzie McDonald announced today that he was leaving UCLA a year early and turning pro. Many people including myself figured it was a foregone conclusion that McDonald would move on after a tremendous junior year and he made it official after signing an exclusive representation agreement with Octagon.

Colette Lewis had a Q&A with Mackie after today’s announcement so I highly recommend that you give that a read over at ZooTennis. UCLA’s release had some good quotes from Mackie and Billy Martin and the Daily Bruin had comments from associate head coach Grant Chen.

UCLA will now have to replace both McDonald and Karue Sell so it’ll be interesting to see who Billy brings in to keep things rolling along in Westwood – maybe a big time transfer, or top international player, or possibly a top U.S. junior that might be able to enroll in January.

There weren’t any head coaches hires today but there was a pretty big assistant hiring with Tanner Stump, 2016 ITA Southern Region Assistant Coach of the Year, leaving his alma mater at Mississippi State for Florida. The Florida assistant job came open when Mark Merklein decided to step down at the end of the season so he and his family could pursue other opportunities.

For the second day in a row there was a release about a player transferring from one school to another. Yesterday Rice announced that Eric Rutledge was transferring from Wake Forest and Wendy Zhang was transferring from Miami and today Arizona announced that Shoti Meparidze was transferring from NC State. I expect to see plenty more transfers announced as the summer goes along and I’ll list then on my transfers page as hear about them. I’m sure I’ll miss some of them so if you hear about any others let me know and I’ll add them to the list.

There was plenty of activity today on the pro tour with some good results and some rough ones. It looked like John Isner (Georgia ’07) was going to book his spot in the quarterfinals at the ATP 500 Aegon Championships (Grass) in London but Gilles Muller fought off 10 match points to get the win 3-6, 7-6(16), 7-6(7).

Guys with college ties went 4-6 on the day at the Winston-Salem USA F18 (Hard) Futures. Georgia rising sophomore Emil Reinberg pulled off the biggest upset of the day when he beat #476 Dennis Nevolo (Illinois ’12) 6-4, 6-7(4), 7-6(5) in a match that took 3 hours and 41 minutes. Reinberg, who earned his first-ever ATP point on Tuesday, served for the match up 6-4, 5-4 and had a match point at 40/30 but he wasn’t able to close it out in straight sets. Nevolo led 5-3 in the third and served for it up 5-4 but Reinberg broke from 15/40 to even it at 5-5. Reinberg held from 40/15 to go up 6-5 and then Nevolo sent it to a tiebreak after fighting off a pair of match points before holding in a four deuce game. Reinberg led 4-0 in the tiebreak before Nevolo rattled off three straight to make it 4-3. Reinberg won both points on his serve to go up 6-3 but Nevolo did the same to make it 6-5. Reinberg was able to close it out on his sixth match point to move into the quarterfinals for the first-time ever.

Thursday Results:
Sekou Bangoura (Florida ’11) def. Jared Hiltzik (Illinois ’16) 6-3, 3-6, 6-1
Emil Reinberg (Georgia Rising Soph) def. Dennis Nevolo (Illinois ’12) 6-4, 6-7(4), 7-6(5)
Rhyne Williams (Tennessee ’11) def. Tennys Sandgren (Tennessee ’11) 6-3, 3-6, 6-3
Alex Kuznetsov def. Jonathan Ho (Wake Forest ’16)  6-3, 6-3
Peter Polansky def. Dennis Uspensky (Wake Forest Rising Soph) 6-3, 6-3
Eric Quigley (Kentucky ’12) def. Reilly Opelka 6-3, 3-6, 7-5
Darian King def. Aron Hiltzik (Illinois Rising Jr) 6-0, 5-0 ret.

Friday Schedule:
[1] Sekou Bangoura (Florida ’11) vs. [Q] Emil Reinberg (Georgia Rising Soph)
[Q] Rhyne Williams (Tennessee ’11) vs. [7] Alex Kuznetsov
[5] Eric Quigley (Kentucky ’12) vs. [2] Darian King

13 of the 16 guys playing at the Buffalo USA F19 (Clay) Futures had college ties and those 13 guys going a combined 6-7. NCAA runner-up Mikael Torpegaard powered past 15 year-old Sebastian Korda 6-1, 6-1 and will next meet former Illini Farris Gosea after Gosea beat Torpegaard’s former teammate Hunter Callahan 7-6, 7-5.

Thursday Results:
Gavin Van Peperzeel def. [Q] Evan Zhu (UCLA Commit) 7-6(3), 6-4
Hans Hach (Abilene Christian ’13) def. [Q] Justin Roberts (South Florida Rising Jr) 6-2, 4-6, 6-3
Mikael Torpegaard (Ohio State Rising Jr) def. Sebastian Korda 6-1, 6-1
Farris Gosea (Illinois ’15) def. Hunter Callahan (Ohio State ’15) 7-6(4), 7-5
Nathan Pasha (Georgia ’15) def. William Bushamuka (Kentucky Rising Jr) 6-2, 6-3
Tigre Hank def. Juan Benitez Chavarriaga (Baylor ’15) 3-6, 7-6(6), 6-2
Winston Lin (Columbia ’15) def. [Q] Andrew Watson (Memphis Rising Jr) 6-2, 6-4
Evan King (Michigan ’13) def. [Q] Dragos Ignat (Columbia ’16) 6-2, 7-5

Friday Schedule
[7] Hans Hach (Abilene Christian ’13) vs. [1] Gavin Van Peperzeel
Mikael Torpegaard (Ohio State Rising Jr) vs. Farris Gosea (Illinois ’15)
[8] Nathan Pasha (Georgia ’15) vs. [4] Tigre Hank
[2] Evan King (Michigan ’13) vs. [5] Winston Lin (Columbia ’15) 

Arthur Rinderknech (Texas A&M Rising Jr) booked his first-ever spot in a Futures quarterfinal with a 6-1, 6-1 rout over #395 Juan Carlos Saez at the Binche, Belgium, F1 Futures (Clay). Artillery Arthur will meet another fellow qualifier in the quarters when he faces #1353 Benjamin Dhoe.

Nick Horton (NC State Rising Jr) and Alexis Musialek (Kentucky ’12) both went out in the quarterfinals at the Mont-de-marsan, France F10 Futures(Clay). Horton lost to #789 Romain Arneodo 6-2, 6-1 while Musialek lost 3-6, 7-5, 6-4 to #466 Maxime Hamou.

Mikelis Libietis (Tennessee ’15) moved into the quarterfinals at the Hong Kong F2 Futures (Hard) after defeating #635 Arata Onozawa 6-4, 7-6(8). Next up is #522 Yecong He in a match that is already into the second set (He up 7-6).

Mitchell Frank (Virginia ’15) joined Aziz Dougaz (Florida State Rising Jr), Tucker Vorster (Ole Miss ’11), and John Lamble (Santa Clara ’14) in the quarterfinals at the Maputo, Mozambique F2 Futures (Hard) after defeating Michael Grant (USC ’14) 6-2, 3-6, 6-2. Dougaz and Vorster will face each other, Lamble gets the top seed Lloyd Harris, and Frank will face the No. 4 seed Marc Polmans.

Peter Nagy (Texas A&M Corpus Christi ’15) is into the semifinals at the Warsaw, Poland, F4 Futures (Clay) after defeating #984 Patrik Niklas-Salminen 6-4, 6-4. Next up is #736 Grzegorz Panfil.

South Florida players went 1-1 in the quarterfinals at the Cartagena, Columbia, F1 Futures (Hard).
Roberto Cid (South Florida ’16) beat the top seed #379 Facundo Mena 6-2, 6-2 and will next face the No. 4 seed Juan Gomez. Peter Bertran (South Florida Rising Jr) lost to Alejandro Gomez (Kentucky ’14) 6-3, 6-2 with Gomez now set to play #455 Christopher Diaz-Figueroa.