(January 5, 2016) LOS ANGELES – Former three-time University of Michigan All-American Evan King’s big upset on Tuesday was worth the wait.
Following a day of rain that drenched Southern California, a total of nine first-round singles matches were finally completed under the lights on the first day of main-draw action at the Southern California Pro Futures Tournament, a USTA $25,000 Pro Circuit event taking place at Marks Tennis Stadium on the campus of USC near downtown Los Angeles.
The 23-year-old King, ranked No. 414 in the ATP world rankings, posted a convincing 6-2, 6-3, win over the Bruin No. 1 player and junior Mackenzie McDonald, the tournament’s No. 8 seed who peaked at a high of No. 2 last year in the ITA collegiate singles rankings.
King owns the Michigan program record for most combined career singles and doubles wins (196), and he ranks third all-time on Michigan’s singles wins list with 117 victories. In the pro ranks, King has captured 13 USTA Pro Circuit and ITF Pro Circuit doubles titles.
McDonald’s one-time UCLA teammate Clay Thompson eliminated a seeded player as the SoCal native ousted former University of Kentucky All-American and the tournament’s No. 5-seeded Eric Quigley, 6-4, 6-7 (6), 6-4, in a match that lasted 2 hours, 13 minutes and finished at a quarter past 11 p.m.
But that wasn’t even the last match of the marathon day as 17-year-old Stefan Kozlov played well past his bedtime in beating fellow American Jean-Yves Aubone, 6-0, 7-5, in a match that finished at 11:27 p.m.
Rain is supposed to fall for most of the day on Wednesday, with Thursday offering a little more hope with some clearer skies forecasted.
This is the second consecutive year the Southern California Pro Futures Tournament is taking place to start the year. Prize money has increased, however, from a total of $15,000 to $25,000.
Tuesday’s First-Round Singles Scores
wc: wild-card; q: qualifier
Sebastian Fanselow, Germany, def. Eric Johnson, U.S., 6-1, 6-1
Evan King, U.S., def. Mackenzie McDonald (8), U.S., 6-2, 6-3
Nicolas Meister (3), U.S., def. Alexios Halebian, U.S., 7-6 (4), 7-5
Gianluigi Quinzi, Italy, def. Gonzales Austin (wc), U.S., 7-6 (3), 7-5
Dennis Nevolo, U.S., def. Nicolas Barrientos (2), Colombia, 6-4, 7-6 (3)
Philip Bester (4), Canada, def. Brandon Holt (wc), U.S., 6-4, 6-3
Edward Corrie, Great Britain, def. Ernesto Escobedo, U.S., 7-6 (3), 7-5
Clay Thompson, U.S., def. Eric Quigley (5), 6-4, 6-7 (6), 6-4
Stefan Kozlov (6), U.S., def. Jean-Yves Aubone, U.S., 6-0, 7-5
For more information including draws and schedules, check out procircuit.usta.com. For more information on the Southern California Tennis Academy run by Smith and Mitch Bridge, go to sctennisacademy.com.
By Steve Pratt