Oracle/ITA National Fall Championships - Babic and Hartono Pull Off Upsets; Ohio State & Florida State Men Go UndefeatedWritten by Bobby Knight
The opening day of the Oracle/ITA National Fall Championships saw most of the top seeds pull through however there were a couple of big upsets on the women's side. Oklahoma State senior Vladica Babic (11.27) rolled the top seed Florida senior Anna Danilina (12.10) 6-3, 6-1 while Ole Miss senior Arianne Hartono (11.53) came back from a set down to defeat the No. 3 seed Cal senior Karla Popovic (11.86) 3-6, 6-4, 6-1. The No. 2 and No. 4 seeds also got all they wanted with Pepperdine sophomore Ashley Lahey (11.92) holding off Purdue junior Silvia Ambrosio (10.70) 7-6(4), 1-6, 6-3 while UCLA sophomore Ena Shibahara (11.82) edged TCU senior Aleksandra Zenovka (11.05) 6-2, 4-6, 7-6(5).
The men's top seed Mississippi State junior Nuno Borges won his opening over Texas junior Leonardo Telles 7-5, 6-1 while the No. 2 seed USC sophomore Brandon Holt defeated Virginia Tech junior Mitch Harper 6-3, 6-2. The highest seed to fall was the No. 10 seed Florida sophomore Johannes Ingildsen (14.20) who lost 6-1, 7-5 to Notre Dame junior Alex Lebedev (13.69).
Both Ohio State and Florida State went 3-0 on the men's side while Georgia went 1-3.
The ITA's event page will have doubles results after all the matches finish along with singles start times for Thursday's Round of 32.
The final major event of the fall, the Oracle/ITA National Fall Championships, kicks off on Wednesday morning at the JW Marriott and Indian Wells Tennis Garden in sunny California. Mississippi State junior Nuno Borges is the top seed in the men's singles draw while Florida senior Anna Danilina is the top seed in the women's singles draw. The top seeds in the doubles draws are Florida's Johannes Ingildsen and Alfredo Perez and Duke's Ellyse Hamlin and Kaitlyn McCarthy.
There will be one round of singles played on Wednesday and one on Thursday and then on Friday they'll be two rounds. The semifinals will be held on Saturday with the finals set for this Sunday. The ITA will have live scoring and there will be live streaming on two courts at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden with the stream available on the ITA's event page.
The ITA's event page has starting times along with an event preview and down below I have all the first round singles matches listed out.
Pro Circuit Recap - Samantha Murray Sweeps Singles/Doubles in GB; Christian/Santamaria Win Doubles in Macon; Reyes-Varela/Rola Roll in LimaWritten by Bobby Knight
Northwestern graduate Samantha Murray was the big winner last week after sweeping singles and doubles titles at the ITF $15K in Wirral, Great Britain. Murray only dropped one set in singles and cruised to a 6-2, 6-2 win in the final over Eden Silva. Murray's toughest match came in the semifinals against her doubles partner Maia Lumsden when she came back from a 3-6, 3-4* deficit to win 3-6, 6-4, 6-3. The singles title was the second of Murray's career and first since 2012.
Murray and Lumsden only dropped one set in the doubles draw and they won the doubles title with a 6-4, 6-3 win over Alicia Barnett and Laura Sainsbury. The doubles title was Murray's second of the year and 15th of her career. Murray is currently ranked 490 in singles and 305 in doubles.
Oliver Frank Rolls Through USC to Win SoCal Intercollegiates; Antonioni Fasano Wins Big Ten Singles Championship; Master'U Team AnnouncedWritten by Bobby Knight
The 61st Annual Southern California Intercollegiate Championships came to a close on Monday with Azusa Pacific's Oliver Frank claiming the singles title after a straight set win over USC's Brandon Holt. The 32-player singles draw was comprised of 29 players from D1 schools and 3 from D2 schools which made Frank's run to the title that much more unlikely. Frank started off the tournament with a 6-3, 1-6, 6-4 win over UC Davis's David Goulak and then he came from behind to defeat USC's Jake DeVine 2-6, 6-3, 6-1. In the quarterfinals Frank defeated USC's Laurens Verboven 6-1, 3-6, 6-1 and in the semifinals he knocked out USC's Logan Smith 6-1, 1-6, 6-0. In today's final Frank broke Holt in the eighth game of the match to go up 5-3 and then served out the opening set to take it 6-3. In the second set Frank broke Holt in the fifth game to go in front 3-2 and he held on from there to win it 6-3, 6-4.
"This tournament win means a lot to me. To play against NCAA Division I level players and win is special. The competition here was just a different level. You have to be focused and concentrate more on all the details," Frank said via APU's recap. "I was able to get the momentum early and keep it throughout the tournament. To play as an underdog here was good for my game. I was just able to play my game point-by-point."
National Fall Championship Field is Complete; APU's Oliver Frank Wins a Pair at the SoCal Intercollegiates; Michigan's Brown & Crocker Win Big Ten Dubs ChampionshipWritten by Bobby Knight
The majority of the field for the 2017 Oracle ITA National Fall Championships was released on Thursday but on Friday the field was completed with the addition of a handful of wild cards and a few last minute at-large selections. Baylor sophomore Bjoern Petersen was awarded an Oracle Wild Card into the singles draw which wasn't too surprising due to Oracle's Mark Hurd being a Baylor graduate. Georgia's Wayne Montgomery and Walker Duncan got the extra at-large selection due to UNC's William Blumberg and Robert Kelly pulling out due to Blumberg possibly getting a wild card into Charlottesville next week. Clemson's Alex Favrot and Simon Baudry were awarded an Oracle Wild Card which rounded out the men's doubles field.
The women's singles field already had its 64 players however there was another addition to the doubles field with Loyola Marymount's Veronica Miroshnichenko and Eva Marie Voracek getting an Oracle Wild Card. The doubles field now has 32 teams but I'm expecting to see one more addition since UCLA's Jada Hart is listed twice with two different partners.
National Fall Championship At-Large/Wild Cards Named; SoCal Intercollegiates; Juan Varon InvitationalWritten by Bobby Knight
The ITA released the at-large and wild card selections for next week's Oracle ITA National Fall Championships which will be held in Indian Wells and Palm Desert, California. On the men's side, the teams with multiple singles at-large selections were Ohio State (3), Florida State (3), Georgia (2), Kentucky (2), and Tulane (2). The two men's wild cards went to Mississippi State's Nuno Borges (ITA Preseason No. 2) and Ohio State's JJ Wolf (ITA Preseason No. 29).
There were four extra at-large selections on the men's side due to qualifiers William Blumberg, Mikael Torpegaard, Gustav Hansson, and David Volfson opting not to play. There are two pro events in the United States next week with a Futures event in Birmingham (AL) and a Challenger event in Charlottesville. I saw Hansson's name listed on the acceptance list for Birmingham but I didn't see the others listed in either place so unless they get a wild card I'm not sure why they choose not to play.
The women's teams with multiple selections were Cal (3), North Carolina (3), Duke (2), Georgia (2), Loyola Marymount (2), and UCLA (2). The two women's wild cards went to Michigan's Kate Fahey (ITA Preseason No. 6) and Georgia's Elena Christofi (ITA Preseason No. 10). Everyone else who qualified remained in the field.
As per the ITA's selection criteria, to be considered for an at-large selection in singles, a player must have reached the quarterfinals of the Oracle ITA Masters, the Round of 16 of the All-American Championships or the quarterfinals of an ITA Regional Championship. The at-large singles selections were based on each players’ ITA/UTR Rankings Average which was a combination of a players’ ITA preseason national ranking, Universal Tennis Rating and ITA mid-season unpublished ranking.