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Top-Seeded Girls Fall at USTA International Spring Championships
CARSON, Calif., (Tuesday, April 1, 2014) – Playing one of your best friends and roommate for more than a year is never fun, but it was something Henrik Wiersholm had to deal with and get through on Tuesday during a windy Day 2 of the 10th annual USTA International Spring Championships taking place at the StubHub Center.
The 17-year-old Wiersholm from Kirkland, Wash., faltered toward the end of his match, but ended up pulling out a, 6-2, 7-5, Boys’ 18s win over 16-year-old Catalin Mateas of Braintree, Mass.
“I played solid and real well until I was up a set and 5-2 and I let off the gas a little bit,” said Wiersholm, who was a finalist last year at this event losing to current ITF No. 2 world-ranked junior Stefan Kozlov in the final. “I thought he would give it to me but that’s not what happened and I had to take it from him.”
Wiersholm currently trains with the USTA Player Development group based in Boca Raton, Fla. “I know his game and he knows mine,” said the Virginia University recruit Wiersholm.
Wiersholm said after his finals run last year, he “ran into some problems” the following week at the ASICS Easter Bowl. The 60 mph wind gusts were too much for his allergies and he suffered a two-hour pre-match nose bleed before falling to eventual champion Gage Brymer in the third round.
Wiersholm, who called this week’s Carson tournament a “helluva field,” next faces Carson’s Deiton Baughman on Wednesday.
It was a day of shocking upsets in the girls’ divisions as both top seeds in the 18s and 16s fell in convincing straight-set matches. In the 18s first round, unseeded Emma Higuchi of Los Angeles beat No. 1 Sandra Samir of Egypt, 6-1, 6-4. And in the 16s, No. 1 Alexa Corcoleotes of Hillsborough, Calif., lost to unseeded Nami Otsuka of Norcross, Ga., 6-3, 6-2 in a second-round match.
In what was turning into the sure Match of the Day after two sets in the Girls’ 18s, No. 2-seeded Sofia Kenin of Penbroke Pines, Fla., was locked into a tight battle against unseeded USC recruit Jessica Failla, who took the first set, 7-6 (5). Both players traded baseline groundies in the second set with Kenin holding on 7-5. In the third set, Kenin ran Failla ragged and took the match 6-1.
“I saw that she was getting tired and I moved her around a lot,” said the current ITF-ranked No. 39 player in the world who was born in Russia but raised in the U.S.
Kenin was a late entry and took a wild card into the tournament. “I was in Brazil playing tournaments the past two weeks but didn’t do so well, so I decided to come here,” she said.
Kenin lost in the first round of the ASICS Easter Bowl last year to No. 2-seeded Ena Shibahara in the 16s, but came back to win the consolation draw.
For a complete run down of Tuesday’s scores and updated draws, log onto the website at www.usta.com/isc.