Qualifiers McDonald and Bangoura Upset Seeded Players On Day 2 at USTA Men’s Pro Championships of Calabasas

USTA pro circuit logo

(March 25, 2015) CALABASAS, Calif., – Five unseeded Americans took vastly different routes into the second round of the USTA Men’s Pro Tennis Championships of Calabasas on Wednesday during first round play at the Calabasas Tennis & Swim Center.


Mico Santiago, Francis Tiafoe, Ernesto Escobedo, Mackenzie McDonald and Sekou Bangoura each posted victories on a gorgeous sunny day at the USTA Pro Circuit $15,000 Futures tournament.


The qualifier Santiago had the easiest time with his opponent, former USC star Emilio Gomez of Ecuador, posting a 6-3, 6-0 victory. “He seemed tired and I was feeling good and just seemed to take advantage of it,” said Santiago, a 21-year-old from Corvallis, Ore., who trained as a teenager at the Smith Stearns Tennis Academy on Hilton Head Island, S.C. “After losing last week early (to Walker Duncan in Bakersfield), I just got re-committed and stayed focused.”


Tiafoe was playing his first match since winning the Bakersfield ITF title, his first as a professional, last Sunday. He beat No. 4-seeded Darian King of Barbados in a match that had an unusual finish. After dropping the first set, 6-7 (5), Tiafoe battled back to win the second set 7-5 and was leading 2-0 when King became agitated by what he thought were continuous bad calls by the chair umpire, and simply walked off the court and quitting the match.


“He just kind of lost it and sadly had to quit, because he couldn’t handle it,” Tiafoe said. “”That’s never happened to me. I don’t really know what to say.”


In a battle of big-serving 18-year-old Southern Californians, West Covina’s Ernesto Escobedo got past a hard-charging Deiton Baughman of Carson, 6-2, 5-7, 6-2, to advance to the second round where he will meet No. 8-seeded Mitchell Krueger on Thursday.


Qualifiers Mackenzie McDonald, a UCLA sophomore, and former University of Florida star Sekou Bangoura both posted victories against seeded players with Bangoura taking out former collegiate rival and No. 5-seeded Daniel Nguyen in three sets, 6-3, 4-6, 6-2.


“We’ve played in college and at the Irvine Futures,” Bangoura said of Nguyen, who led the USC Trojans to four NCAA team titles, two of which ended with Nguyen clinching the final match, prompting Bangoura to call him the “clutchest player in college tennis history.”


Defending champion Marcos Giron, the 2014 NCAA singles champion from UCLA, appeared on the grounds of the tournament but was forced to withdraw because of injury.


EVENTS: A USPTA Coaches workshop with one or two of the Pro Circuit players and their coach will take place on Thursday, March 26 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The Adult Pro-Am drill is Friday, March 27, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Community Tennis Association & USTA League appreciation night is Friday, March 27, starting at 6 p.m. A VIP sponsor dinner reception is also on Friday from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. A USTA Junior Team Tennis Kid’s Day with a Tennis Carnival is Saturday, March 28, from 1:30 p.m. till 3 p.m.


Wednesday’s First-Round Singles Scores

Fabiano De Paula, Brazil (1), def. Damon Gooch, South Africa, 7-5, 2-6, 7-5

Jason Jung, U.S., (6) def. Maxime Tabatruong, France, 6-3, 6-2

Mackenzie McDonald, U.S. (q), def. Connor Smith, U.S., (7) 6-2, 7-5

Sekou Bangoura, U.S., (q) def. Daniel Nguyen, U.S., (5) 6-3, 4-6, 6-2

Marek Michalicka, Czech Republic, def. Raymond Sarmiento, U.S., (q) 6-4, 6-4

Mitchell Krueger, U.S., (8) def. Nicolas Meister, U.S., 6-4, 6-2

Francis Tiafoe, U.S., def. Darian King, Barbados, (4), 6-7 (5), 7-5, 2-0, ret.

Ernesto Escobedo, U.S., def. Deiton Baughman, U.S., (q) 6-2, 5-7, 6-2

Fritz Wolmarans, U.S., def. Boris Bakalov, Bulgaria, (q) 7-5, 6-3

Mico Santiago, U.S., def. Emilio Gomez, Ecuador, 6-3, 6-0

Giovanni Lapentti, Eucador, def. Michael Shabaz, U.S., (q) 6-4, 6-4

Alexander Ward, Great Britain, def. Walker Duncan, U.S., (ll) 5-7, 6-2, 6-3


Wednesday’s First-Round Doubles Score

Jason Jung, U.S. / Raymond Sarmiento, U.S., def. Keanu Ellen, U.S. / Jan-Michael Gambill, U.S., (wc) 6-2, 7-6 (6).

By Steve Pratt


USTA Announces Sixth Annual US Open National Playoffs











WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., March 4, 2015 – The USTA today announced that the US Open National Playoffs will be held for the sixth season this year, expanding the footprint of the US Open to cities nationwide by providing the opportunity for all players 14 years of age and older to earn a berth into the US Open. New this year, the US Open National Playoffs will include a men’s and women’s doubles competition. Also, players can continue to compete in both men’s and women’s singles, as well as mixed doubles.


The US Open National Playoffs men’s and women’s singles champions earn a wild card into the US Open Qualifying Tournament, held the week prior to the US Open. The US Open National Playoffs men’s, women’s and mixed doubles champions receive a wild card into the main draw of the 2015 US Open.


“The US Open National Playoffs are all about connecting people to the US Open,” said Katrina Adams, USTA Chairman of the Board, CEO and President. “This year, by adding men’s and women’s doubles, the National Playoffs are giving competitors the opportunity to earn their way into the US Open in every possible way. We look forward to another year of great tennis and watching top juniors, collegians, aspiring pros, and weekend warriors compete for the chance to play on tennis’ grandest stage.”


Registration for the 2015 sectional qualifying tournaments opens on Sunday, March 15, at www.USOpen.org/NationalPlayoffs. The entry fee for each of the sectional qualifying tournaments varies, with men’s and women’s singles entries ranging from $75-$100 per player and men’s, women’s and mixed doubles entries ranging from $45-$60 per player. All players competing must have a current USTA membership valid through Aug. 31, 2015.


The US Open National Playoffs begin as a series of 14 sectional qualifying tournaments held in different USTA sections across the country (see complete schedule on page 2). The 14 champions or top available finishers in each division from each sectional qualifying tournament advance to the following US Open National Playoffs Championship events that will take place in conjunction with the Connecticut Open presented by United Technologies, an Emirates Airline US Open Series event, in New Haven, Conn.:

  • Men’s and Women’s Singles Championship, Aug. 21-24
  • Men’s and Women’s Doubles Championship, Aug. 25-28
  • Mixed Doubles Championship, Aug. 26-29

Players may compete at different sectional qualifying tournaments in each division (one for men’s or women’s singles, one for mixed doubles and/or one for men’s or women’s doubles). However, a player may only compete in one sectional qualifying tournament per division during a calendar year. Participants can be of any playing level, giving everyone an opportunity to advance.


More than 1,200 players competed in the 2014 US Open National Playoffs, which marked the largest year-over-year increase in entries in the program’s five-year history. Players ranged from experienced professionals who were once ranked in the Top 50, to junior players and current/ former college standouts, to recreational players of all playing abilities and walks of life. Participants included those competing for charity, businesspeople, musicians, lawyers, reporters, former athletes, and stay-at-home mothers.


Notable past participants include Olympic skier Bode Miller; musician Redfoo of the music group LMFAO; ESPN’s Mike Greenberg, who teamed with six-time US Open champion Chris Evert in mixed doubles; and LuAnn De Lesseps and Jill Zarin of “The Real Housewives of New York City.”


The US Open Qualifying Tournament will be held Aug. 25-28, the US Open men’s and women’s doubles championships begin Sept. 1 and the US Open mixed doubles championship begins Sept. 2 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing, N.Y. The 2015 US Open is scheduled to take place from Aug. 31, to Sept. 13.


US Open National Playoffs information is available at www.USOpen.org/NationalPlayoffs.


USTA President Katrina Adams to be honored The Network Journal’s 17th Annual 25 Influential Black Women Awards in

Jan. 18, 2013; Kiawah Island, SC; Katrina Adams

From the USTA -WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., Feb. 11, 2015 – The USTA today announced that Chairman of the Board, CEO and President Katrina Adams has been named to the 2015 list of “25 Influential Black Women in Business” by The Network Journal (TNJ). Adams will be honored at the 17th Annual 25 Influential Black Women in Business Awards Luncheon, presented by Morgan Stanley on March 26 at the New York Marriott Marquis.


“I am honored and humbled to be recognized by The Network Journal as one of this year’s 25 Influential Black Women in Business,” said Adams. “I look forward to being among so many successful and inspiring black women who are leading the way in areas that impact our world in such a positive and meaningful way. And I thank The Network Journal for leading this charge in shedding light on all of our accomplishments.”


Adams was appointed the Chairman of the Board, CEO and President of the USTA in January 2015. She is the first African-American, first former professional tennis player and youngest person to serve as the association’s chairman of the board, CEO and president.


At the awards presentation, Adams will be joined by honorees from a variety of business backgrounds including finance, television, corporate relations, colleges and universities, and Diversity and Inclusion, to name a few. Those honored will be featured in the Spring 2015 issue of the magazine.


This year’s program includes a networking reception, lunch and awards presentation with Mistress of Ceremonies Brenda Blackmon, an Emmy Award-winning journalist. This is a signature TNJ event, attracting a veritable “Who’s Who” of business executives and decision makers.


“For 17 consecutive years The Network Journal has recognized the outstanding professionalism of 25 African-American women annually, and for 17 years I have been amazed by the heights these women continue to achieve,” said TNJ Publisher and CEO Aziz Gueye Adetimirin.


Former World No 4 James Blake to become Chairman of the USTA Foundation Board of Directors

James Blake (L) and Brooks Brothers CEO Claudio Del Vecchio (R)

James Blake (L) and Brooks Brothers CEO Claudio Del Vecchio (R)

From the USTA: (February. 09, 2015)WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. – The USTA Foundation, the national charitable organization of the United States Tennis Association (USTA), announced that it has appointed former world No. 4 James Blake as chairman of the Foundation’s board of directors. In his new role, Blake will serve as the Foundation’s spokesperson and ambassador to promote the mission and impact of its national outreach efforts.


Blake will help promote the Foundation’s mission of providing tennis and education opportunities to under-resourced youth and individuals with disabilities. He succeeds former pro and longtime tennis journalist and advocate Mary Carillo, who served as chairwoman from 2009 to 2014.


“I’m honored to have been selected as the chairman of the USTA Foundation board of directors. I admire the Foundation’s pursuit to support the combination of tennis and education and the impact it has on so many youth around the country,” said Blake. “I grew up playing tennis at a young age and participated in a National Junior Tennis and Learning (NJTL) program. It was there that I learned the value and influence tennis can add to my life while being encouraged to stay academically focused. It’s through the support of the USTA Foundation where students today are given the same opportunities. And I’m proud to be a part of this outstanding mission to serving up dreams.”


Blake’s professional career spanned 14 years, in which he won 10 ATP singles titles, seven doubles titles and a Davis Cup Championship. He also reached the semifinals of the Beijing Olympics in 2008 and climbed to a career-best No. 4 in the world, ranking as the top American during that time. Blake joined the U.S. Davis Cup team in 2001 – becoming the third African-American to play Davis Cup for the U.S., following in the footsteps of Arthur Ashe and MaliVai Washington. He teamed with Andy Roddick, Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan to capture a record-extending 32nd Davis Cup championship title for the U.S. in 2007.


Blake attended Harvard University, where he became the No.1 player in the nation and acquired numerous accolades including ITA All-American, first team All Eastern Intercollegiate Tennis Association (EITA) honors and EITA/Ivy Rookie of the Year, to name a few. Blake turned pro in 1999, following his sophomore year with the Crimson. Blake began playing tennis at the age of 5, where he attended the Harlem Junior Tennis and Education Program (HJTEP), an NJTL program in New York City supported by the USTA Foundation. It was there where he heard Arthur Ashe speak to a group of kids that inspired him to pursue the sport of tennis.


In 2007, Blake co-wrote a New York Times best-selling autobiography, “Breaking Back.” The following year he was honored with the Arthur Ashe Humanitarian of the Year Award. Blake officially retired from professional tennis at the 2013 US Open.


“The board of directors of the USTA Foundation proudly welcomes James as our new chairman and ambassador for our important mission of  serving under-resourced youth and those in need through tennis and education,” said Thomas Chen, president of the USTA Foundation board of directors. “We have admired his success and reputation as a professional tennis player and are pleased that he shares our core beliefs in giving back through the sport of tennis.  We are honored to have him join the Foundation and know he will continue the great work and leadership we enjoyed by our outgoing chairwoman, Mary Carillo.”


A Yonkers, N.Y., native, Blake created the Thomas Blake Sr. Memorial Cancer Research Fund at New York’s Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in 2004. He runs an annual celebrity tennis and entertainment event, Serving for a Cure, to raise funds for cancer research and prevention.  He lives in Connecticut with his wife Emily and daughters Riley and Emma.


Qualifier Takanyi Garanganga wins USTA Pro Circuit Long Beach Pro Futures

Takanyi Garanganga photo by Chris Ganz

Takanyi Garanganga photo by Chris Ganz

By Steve Pratt

LONG BEACH, Calif., (Jan. 18, 2015) – For three straight days Takanyi Garanganga dropped the first set at the USTA Pro Circuit Long Beach Futures Pro Tournament, and teetered on the brink of elimination. And each time he came back to pull out improbable victories, including Sunday’s final match of the $15,000 tournament played at the El Dorado Park Tennis Center.


The 24-year-old Garanganga, of Harare, Zimbabwe, rallied once again to defeat No. 6-seeded Frederik Nielsen of Denmark, 6-7 (5), 6-3, 6-4, in the final to capture the $2,160 first-place check and 27 valuable ATP ranking points.


Ranked No. 382 in the world, Garanganga did it the hard way all week. Having traveled from Amsterdam where he was training, he missed the entry deadline and showed up last week to sign into qualifying needing a wild card. Garanganga sat through two days of rain delays last Saturday and Sunday where not one ball was hit and then played and won every match he played for seven consecutive days, including two in qualifying and five in the main draw.


“I missed the deadline but I had to come here anyway on my way to Maui (for next week’s USTA Pro Circuit Challenger),” Garanganga said. “It was actually good for me to get the matches at the start of the year. I wasn’t playing very good at the beginning so it was good for me.”


The final was a match of momentum shifts and the large crowd on hand enjoyed the high-level tennis. Nielsen opened strong with an early break and led 4-1 in the first when midway through the sixth game Garanganga reached wide for a forehand and seemed to roll his right ankle.


He took a medical timeout and had his ankle wrapped, proceeded to break Nielsen’s serve and quickly got it to 4-4. In the first-set tiebreaker, Nielsen fell down 5-2 and on the eighth point following a missed forehand wide, Nielsen launched a ball halfway to downtown L.A. and was given a ball abuse warning.


But that seemed to lift his level of play as Nielsen then hit two big serves to pull it to 5-4. Garanganga missed a critical overhead long to make it 6-5 Nielsen, who then served out the set, which finally ended after an hour and 15 minutes.


Garanganga said he didn’t think back to the quarterfinals and semis where he also dropped the first set before coming back. “I just keep playing,” he said. “I just kept waiting for my chances. I was just playing in the moment and wasn’t thinking about past.”


He added: “I’m tired. I’m tired and my body is feeling it. But I will take a day off and then fly to Maui probably on Wednesday.”


Final Singles Results:

q: qualifier

Takanyi Garanganga (q), Zimbabwe def. Frederik Nielsen (6), Denmark, 6-7 (5), 6-3, 6-4


Final Doubles Result:

Nick Meister, U.S. / Eric Quigley (3), U.S., def. Dimitar Kutrovsky, Bulgaria / Dennis Novikov (4), U.S., 6-3, 6-2



Wimbledon Doubles Champ Frederik Nielsen Reaches Final of USTA Pro Circuit $15,000 Long Beach Futures Tournament

By Steve Pratt

LONG BEACH, Calif., (Jan. 17, 2015) – Steadiness and experience have gone along way for Frederik Nielsen this week at the USTA Pro Circuit $15,000 Long Beach Futures Tournament taking place at the El Dorado Park Tennis Center.


The 31-year-old 2012 Wimbledon doubles champion and No. 6-seeded singles player this week, Nielsen of Denmark held off 2014 NCAA singles runner-up Alex Sarkissian from Glendale, 3-6, 6-4, 6-3, to advance to Sunday’s final.


Nielsen, who avenged a 2013 loss to Sarkissian at the Aptos Challenger in their only career meeting, will play qualifier Takanyi Garanganga of Zimbabwe in the 11 a.m. final.


Garanganga battled to the very end against hometown favorite Jason Jung of Torrance, pulling out the close 6-7 (2), 7-6 (5), 6-4 victory over the No. 3 seeded former University of Michigan star.


The average age of the four players Nielsen beat this week was an average age of 19.5, including Martin Redlicki (19), Mackenzie McDonald (19), Stefan Kozlov (16) and Sarkissian (24).


Sarkissian held a 4-2 lead with Nielsen serving in the second set, and had two break points to go ahead 5-2 and serve out the match. But Nielsen stayed steady and held on to win the game and eventually the set.


“At the start of the match I felt like he was a step ahead of me and he was playing better than me and faster than me,” Nielsen said. “I started slicing and slowing the pace down.”


He added: “Physically I feel amazing, and mentally I feel tough. All and all I’m very happy with where I’m at.”


Nielsen has made some time for some sight-seeing this week and has been enjoying the picture-perfect 72-degree sunny weather this week. On Friday, he saw the sunset and views of the Pacific from the Griffith Observatory, and on Saturday evening he was headed to the Santa Monica Pier for dinner.


He surprised many with his 6-0 win in a third set against Kozlov in the quarterfinals on Friday. “I think it’s very tough to evaluate him now because of his age,” Nielsen said of Kozlov. “He’s only 16 years old and it’s outrageous his composure and how impressive he handles everything. I do feel he let me play a little too much on my terms and that he may have some physical limitations over the next couple of years. But he’s very mature and he’s a great fighter. I’m just glad I was able to beat him now.”


USTA League Captain’s Appreciation Day is Sunday, Jan. 18, beginning at 10:30 a.m. The tournament is free and open to the public.


Saturday’s Semifinal Singles Results:

q: qualifier

Frederik Nielsen (6), Denmark, def. Alex Sarkissian, U.S., 3-6, 6-4, 6-3

Takanyi Garanganga (q), Zimbabwe, def. Jason Jung (3), U.S., 6-7 (2), 7-6 (5), 6-4


Friday’s Final Doubles Result:

Nick Meister, U.S. / Eric Quigley (3), U.S., def. Dimitar Kutrovsky, Bulgaria / Dennis Novikov (4), U.S., 6-3, 6-2


Sunday’s Final Singles Schedule

Starting at 11 a.m. PT

Frederik Nielsen (6), Denmark, vs. Takanyi Garanganga (q), Zimbabwe


SINGLES:                  Prize Money                Points

Winner                         $2,160                         27

Runner-up                   $1,272                         15

Semifinalist                 $753                            8

Quarterfinalist             $438                            3

Round of 16                $258                            1

Round of 32                $156                            —


DOUBLES:                Prize Money (per team)

Winner                         $930

Runner-up                   $540

Semifinalist                 $324

Quarterfinalist             $192

Round of 16                $108


Jason Jung Reaches Semis of Long Beach Pro Futures Tournament

By Steve Pratt

(January 16, 2015) LONG BEACH, Calif. – Jason Jung did everything on Friday during the USTA Pro Circuit $15,000 Long Beach Pro Futures Tournament semifinals that he wasn’t able to do against Mitchell Krueger last Sunday night in the final of the USTA Southern California Futures Tournament played at USC.


The 25-year-old No. 3-seeded Jung, who grew up just up the 405 Freeway in Torrance some 15 miles north from the tournament site at the El Dorado Park Tennis Center, avenged a bad finals loss to Krueger just five days ago in which he managed to win just three games. On Friday, Jung advanced to his second straight Futures semifinal in recording a come-from-behind victory over the No. 7-seeded Krueger of Aledo, Texas, 6-7 (5), 7-6 (7), 6-4.


The former University of Michigan standout Jung is trying to win his third career USTA Pro Circuit Futures singles title. His last came in 2013 at the $10,000 Futures in Edwardsville, Ill. He spent most of last spring and summer competing overseas in ITF-level events in Korea and China. At Michigan, he received All-Big Ten honors in 2010 and 2011 and ranks fourth all-time in Wolverines’ history with 88 career doubles wins.


“This is my fourth year surprisingly as a pro,” Jung said. “It’s going to have to a big year for me with some big jumps and hopefully I’ll be able to play some Grand Slams.”


He added: “Hopefully there’s not too much pressure on me and I can have some fun. But I’m going to go for it and if it doesn’t happen, that’s OK.”


Ranked No. 321 in the world rankings, Jung will face qualifier Takanyi Garanganga of Zimbabwe in Saturday’s second semifinal. Garanganga beat current USC senior Yannik Hanfmann of Germany also in comeback fashion, taking the final two sets in a 3-6, 6-1, 6-3 victory.


Garanganga is currently ranked No. 382 in the world but had to get into qualifying with a wild card because he was a late entry and missed the deadline. Garanganga, who won the African Junior Championship at the age of 14, was discovered by Atlanta-based coach Brian de Villiers who brought him to the United States.


He turned down offers to play collegiately at the University of Georgia and the University of Illinois to focus on a professional career. Last year he posted wins over current Top 80 player Sam Groth and NCAA champion Marcos Giron.


In the first semifinal starting at 11 a.m., it will be Frederik Nielsen of Denmark, the No. 4 seed, against the unseeded former Pepperdine star Alex Sarkissian of Glendale, Calif. Nielsen needed three sets to beat 16-year-old Stefan Kozlov (7-6 (5), 4-6, 6-0) while Sarkissian eliminated qualifier Mico Santiago in another close match (7-6 (5), 6-2).


Serving was the key for Nielsen, who had eight aces and three doubles faults compared to eight double faults and three aces for Kozlov.


In the doubles final, a pair of former collegiate stars Nick Meister (UCLA) and Eric Quigley (University of Kentucky), the No. 4 seeds, defeated the No. 3 team of Dimitar Kutrovsky of Bulgaria of Dennis Novikov, also formerly of UCLA, 6-3, 6-2.


Friday’s Quarterfinal Singles Results:

q: qualifier

Frederik Nielsen (6), Denmark, def. Stefan Kozlov, U.S., 7-6 (5), 4-6, 6-0

Alex Sarkissian, U.S., def. Mico Santiago (q), U.S., 7-6 (5), 6-2

Jason Jung (3), U.S., def. Mitchell Kruerger (7), U.S., 6-7 (5), 7-6 (7), 6-4

Takanyi Garanganga (q), Zimbabwe, def. Yannik Hanfmann, Germany, 3-6, 6-1, 6-3


Friday’s Final Doubles Result:

Nick Meister, U.S. / Eric Quigley (3), U.S., def. Dimitar Kutrovsky, Bulgaria / Dennis Novikov (4), U.S., 6-3, 6-2


Saturday’s Semifinal Singles Schedule

Starting at 11 a.m. PT

Frederik Nielsen (6), Denmark, vs. Alex Sarkissian, U.S.

Followed by Jason Jung (3), U.S., vs. Takanyi Garanganga (q), Zimbabwe


Top Two Seeds Fall in USTA Long Beach Futures Tournament

USTA pro circuit logo

By Steve Pratt

(January 15, 2015) LONG BEACH, Ca– It was a tough day for the top-two seeded players as the second round of singles play was completed on Thursday at the USTA $15,000 Pro Circuit Long Beach Futures Tournament.


Sixteen-year-old phenom Stefan Kozlov dusted aside top-seeded Dennis Novikov, 6-0, 6-1, on a day that saw every match played at the El Dorado Park Tennis Center end in straight sets.


“Stefan played flawless tennis today,” said last week’s Southern California Futures Tournament promoter Peter Smith, who is doing the same this week at the home site of the Southern California Junior Tennis Academy he runs with Mitch Bridge. “He was in control the entire time. He has a bright future ahead of him.”


Smith’s housemate this week and his former USC player Daniel Nguyen, the No. 2 seed, lost to current USC senior and qualifier Yannick Hanfmann from Karlsruhe, Germany, 6-4, 6-3.


“I haven’t been out here since the juniors, good ol’ boys’ 14s,” Nguyen said about playing at El Dorado Park, a couple of blocks away from Smith’s home. “I remember a lot of long days here, and the Frisbee golfers.”


Nguyen battled through a touch of food poisoning during the first round on Wednesday in which he said he “felt like puking” on the court several times.


The big stage is nothing new to Kozlov, who lost in the Wimbledon Junior singles final last summer, and in the fall, reached the final of the $100,000 USTA Pro Circuit Challenger in Sacramento, Calif., losing to current world No. 35 Sam Querrey. By reaching the Sacramento final at age 16, he became the youngest American to reach a Challenger final since Andre Agassi in 1986.


On Friday, Kozlov can swap Wimbledon stories with No. 4-seeded Frederik Nielsen, who he plays in the quarterfinals at 10 a.m. Nielsen won the doubles title at Wimbledon in 2012.


In the doubles final on Friday not before 3:30 p.m., it will be last week’s Southern California Futures champs Novikov and Dimitar Kutrovsky of Bulgaria against former UCLA star Nick Meister and former University of Kentucky All-American Eric Quigley.


Thursday’s Second-Round Singles Results:

q: qualifier; wc: wild card

Alex Sarkissian, U.S., def. Ji Sung Nam, Korea, 6-4, 6-2

Jason Jung (3), U.S., def. Eric Johnson (wc), U.S., 6-3, 6-1

Mitchell Kruerger (7), U.S., def. Sekou Bangoura, U.S., 6-2, 6-1

Yannik Hanfmann (q), Germany, def. Daniel Nguyen (2), U.S., 6-4, 6-3

Mico Santiago (q), U.S., def. Kyle McMorrow, U.S., 6-0, 6-0

Takanyi Garanganga (q), Zimbabwe, def. Michael Grant (wc), U.S., 6-2, 7-5

Stefan Kozlov, U.S., def. Dennis Novikov (1), U.S., 6-0, 6-1

Frederik Nielsen (6), Denmark, def. Mackenzie McDonald, U.S., 7-6 (2), 6-4


Thursday’s Semifinal Doubles Results:

Dimitar Kutrovsky, Bulgaria / Dennis Novikov (4), U.S., def. Karim Hossam, Egypt / Junior Ore, U.S., 6-2, 6-2

Nick Meister, U.S. / Eric Quigley (3), U.S., def. Sekou Bangoura, U.S. / Ji Sung Nam (2), Korea, 6-3, 6-4


Genesen, Chen Win USTA Winter National Championships and Earn Wild Cards into Future USTA Pro Circuit Events

(January 6, 2015) The USTA announced on Tuesday that top young juniors William Genesen (17, Tulsa, Okla.) and Kelly Chen (15, Cerritos, Calif.) won the USTA Winter National Championships Boys’ and Girls’ 18s singles titles last week in Scottsdale, Ariz., each earning wild card entries into future USTA Pro Circuit events.


Eighth-seeded Genesen, rated as a Top-20 recruit in the Class of 2016 by TennisRecruiting.net, defeated unseeded Alafia Ayeni (15, San Diego), 6-4, 6-1, to win the Boys’ 18s title. No. 2-seeded Chen, who won a USTA Pro Circuit $10,000 women’s event in 2014, becoming the youngest USTA Pro Circuit women’s champion in 10 years, beat No. 10 Mia Horvit (17, Palm City, Fla.), 6-3, 7-6(3).


The Winter National Championships consisted of 128 singles players / 64 doubles teams in the 18s, 16s, 14s and 12s age divisions. They were played on outdoor hard courts at Scottsdale Ranch Park (18s and 16s) and the Jim Refkin Tennis Center in Tucson, Ariz. (14s and 12s).


JJ Wolf (Cincinnati) and Morgan Coppoc (Tulsa, Okla.) took the Boys’ and Girls’ 16s singles titles. No. 2-seeded Wolf defeated No. 3 Jake Van Emburgh (Verona, Wisc.), 7-6(1), 6-2, while Coppoc beat Chiara Lommer (Skokie, Ill.), 6-2, 2-6, 7-5.


Govind Nanda (Redlands, Calif.) and Cali Jankowski (Carlsbad, Calif.) won the Boys’ and Girls’ 14s singles titles. Nanda defeated Jaycer Calleros (San Antonio), who also won the Boys’ 14s doubles title, with Kevin Zhu (Pearland, Texas), 7-5, 4-6, 6-1, while Jankowski overcame Sara Choy (San Francisco), 6-4, 6-4.


Niroop Vallabhaneni (Scottsdale, Ariz.) beat Jameson Corsillo (Boca Raton, Fla.), 6-1, 6-4, to take home the Boys’ 12s singles crown, while Gianna Pielet (El Paso, Texas) won the Girls’ 12s title by defeating Mae Canete (Los Angeles), 0-6, 6-3, 6-2.


Singles Championships to Headline Sunday’s Action at USTA National 40 Hard Court Championships


(December 6, 2014) La Jolla, Calif. With the completion of the semifinal round, men’s and women’s singles championships will take center stage on Sunday as the USTA National 40 Hard Court Championships will come to a close at the La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club.

The women’s final will pit top-seeded Jennifer Dawson of Carlsbad, Calif., against third-seeded Dina McBride of Stevenson Ranch, Calif. In the men’s final, defending champion and second seed Tony Bujan of Tustin, Calif., will take on top-seeded Oren Motevassel of San Jose, Calif.

Under bright, sunny skies on Court No. 1, Dawson, a local tennis teaching professional, overwhelmed unseeded Christy Panter of West Hills, Calif., 6-1, 6-0 in 50 minutes in a semifinal match. Dawson, the 2011 tournament champion, has dropped only a single game in her three matches leading up to the final.

In the other women’s semifinal, McBride, a 43-year-old tennis teaching professional in Valencia, Calif., ousted 2009 tournament champion Ros Nideffer of San Diego, 6-3, 7-5 in one-hour and 50 minutes on Court No. 2. McBride defeated the second-seeded Nideffer in the 2012 final, but lost to the former touring professional in last year’s semifinal.

“I’m so happy I got through it. I can’t believe it. I had to stay patient and I couldn’t give away any points,” McBride said following her victory. “It’s so exciting to be back in the final. It’s going to be tough because Jennifer (Dawson) is so tough. I just have to stay focused.”

Dawson and McBride, who both played collegiate tennis at the University of San Diego, have previously twice in the National 40s at the La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club. Dawson won the 2011 final over McBride, who retired with an injury in the first set. In last year’s tournament, Dawson won the USTA Bronze Ball, defeating McBride, 6-2, 6-0 in the 3rd/4th Place match.

In the men’s semifinals, Bujan defeated fifth-seeded Michael Chang of Anaheim, Calif., 6-3, 6-1 on Court No. 2 in one-hour and 15 minutes. The semifinal was a rematch of last year’s men’s final when Bujan defeated Chang, 6-2, 3-6, 6-0 to win the title.

In the other semifinal, Motevassel outlasted 2009 champion and sixth seed Jeff Greenwald of San Anselmo, Calif., 6-4, 6-1. Motevassel, a former touring tennis professional who was ranked as high as No. 161 in the world, fell to Bujan in last year’s men’s semifinal, 6-3, 7-5.

Sunday’s Singles Championship Schedule (All starting times are PST)

11 a.m. –
Oren Motevassel (1), San Jose, Calif., vs Tony Bujan (2), Tustin, Calif.

9:30 a.m. -
- Jennifer Dawson (1), Carlsbad, Calif., vs. Dina McBride (3), Stevenson Ranch, Calif.

The USTA National Father & Son and Grandfather & Grandson Hard Court Doubles Championships will also conclude on Sunday. 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 U.S.  The Grandfather/Grandson Championship began at the La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club in 2003.

For the latest updated tournament scores, results and draws for each division, go to:

The champions in each division will received a USTA gold ball. The runner-up in each division will be presented with a USTA silver ball. There will be a 3rd / 4th place play-off for a USTA bronze ball.