(December 4, 2013) La Jolla, Calif. – The women’s semifinal and men’s quarterfinal match-ups are set at the United States Tennis Association (USTA) National 40 Hard Court Championships after a day filled with entertaining tennis matches came to a close at the La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club.
Third-seeded Jennifer Dawson of Carlsbad, Calif., the tournament champion in 2011, overcame a slow start and defeated Deborah Higa of Solana Beach, Calif., 7-5, 6-1 to advance to the semifinals where she will meet top-seeded Sophie Woorons-Johnson of Anderson, S.C.
Woorons-Johnson dominated fifth-seeded Fanny Gamble of San Rafael, Calif., 6-0, 6-1, on Court No. 1 in her quarterfinal match and has dropped only two games in reaching the semifinals.
“I’m a little rusty, but it’s a great tournament and it’s fun to play here,” Dawson said after her quarterfinal victory. “I only play one or two tournaments a year. I don’t play all year. I’m just going to try my best.”
The other women’s semifinal will feature a rematch of last year’s women’s final as second-seeded Dina McBride of Valencia, Calif. faces fourth-seeded Ros Nideffer of San Diego. McBride, a former college standout at the University of San Diego in the mid-1990s, defeated Nideffer 7-5, 6-2, to win the championship in 2012.
In Wednesday’s quarterfinals, McBride ousted fifth-seeded Quynh Le of Irvine, Calif., 6-4, 6-1. The fourth-seeded Nideffer, a former two-time Wimbledon singles quarterfinalist, struggled against fifth-seeded Marlo Carruth of Studio City, but advanced with a 6-7 (2), 6-2, 6-1 victory.
The women’s semifinals will be played at 10 a.m. (PST) on Thursday.
Men’s top seed and two-time defending champion Oren Motevassel of San Jose, Calif., breezed past ninth-seeded Sergio Rico of La Jolla, Calif., 6-1, 6-0 to advance to a quarterfinal meeting with ninth-seeded Bill Behrens of Murrieta, Calif.
Also advancing to the quarterfinals was sixth-seeded Todd Nelson of Valley Center, Calif., a 6-1, 6-0, third-round winner over ninth-seeded Jailton De Matos of Newport Coast, Calif. The 52-year-old Nelson, a former touring professional, is a two-time former tournament champion, winning the title in 2001 and 2002. He reached a career-high ranking of 58 in the world in 1986.
Nelson is scheduled to play fourth-seeded Tony Bujan of Palm Desert, Calif., in a quarterfinal match on Thursday at 9 a.m. (PST). Bujan eliminated ninth-seeded Esteban Altuna of Norco, Calif., 6-1, 6-2.
For complete tournament draws, which includes Thursday’s schedule, please go to: http://tennislink.usta.com/Tournaments/TournamentHome/Tournament.aspx?T=125262
Matches will begin at 8 a.m. (PST) Thursday, Dec. 5 through Friday, Dec. 6. The weekend’s schedule on Saturday, Dec. 7 and Sunday, Dec. 8 will begin at 9 a.m. (PST). The women’s singles final will be played on Saturday, while the men’s singles final will take place on Sunday.
The tournament, which includes former touring professionals and the nation’s strongest players in the 40 and over age group, also features men’s and women’s doubles and mixed doubles for players 40 and over.
Also on the agenda of the seven-day event is the USTA National Father and Son and Grandfather and Grandson Hard Court Doubles Championships beginning Friday, Dec. 6, with matches concluding on Sunday, Dec. 8.
The Father and Son championship has been held continuously at the La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club since 1959, and attracts the top father and son tennis teams in the nation. The Grandfather/Grandson event is a relatively new competitive division that started at the La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club just a few years ago.
USTA National 40 Hard Court Championships
La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club
La Jolla, Calif.
Oren Motevassel (1), San Jose, Calif., def. Sergio Rico (9), LA Jolla, Calif., 6-1, 6-0
Julien Heine (2), Laguna Beach, Calif., def. Daniel Marting (9), Phoenix, Ariz., 6-2, 6-3
Kerry Safdie (3), San Diego, def. Patrick Rost (9), San Diego, 4-6, 6-2, 6-3
Tony Bujan (4), Palm Desert, Calif., def. Esteban Altuna (9), Norco, 6-1, 6-2
Michael Chang (5), Anaheim, Calif., def. Daniel Williams, El Centro, 6-0, 6-0
Todd Nelson (6), Valley Center, Calif., def. Jailton De Matos (9), Newport Coast, Calif., 6-1, 6-0
Bill Behrens (9), Murrieta, Calif., def. Paul Smith (7), Arlington, Va., 6-1, 6-2
Pierre Mareschal (9), Pasadena, Calif., def. Franklin Da Silva (8), Newport Coast, Calif., 6-4, 6-2
Sophie Woorons-Johnston (1), Anderson, S.C., def. Fanny Gamble (5), San Rafael, Calif., 6-0, 6-1
Dina McBride (2), Woodland Hills, Calif., def. Quynh Le (5), Irvine, Calif., 6-4, 6-1
Jennifer Dawson (3), Carlsbad, Calif., def. Deborah Higa (5), Solana Beach, Calif., 7-5, 6-1
Ros Nideffer (4), San Diego, def. Marlo Carruth (5), Studio City, Calif., 6-7(2), 6-2, 6-1