Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Catching up: Fritz, Hibino, colleges, juniors

Taylor Fritz, shown en route to the title in the
recent Fairfield Challenger, lost in the second
round in Las Vegas. That ended his winning
streak at 17 matches. Photo by Paul Bauman
   U.S. phenom Taylor Fritz's winning streak ended at 17 matches last week when he lost in the second round of the $50,000 Las Vegas Challenger.
   Fritz, the world's top-ranked junior, fell to Grega Zemlja of Slovenia 6-7 (6), 6-2, 6-2. Zemlja advanced to the final, losing to Thiemo de Bakker of the Netherlands. Both Zemlja, 29, and de Bakker, 27, are former top-50 players.
   Fritz, who will turn 18 on Wednesday, won three straight titles after turning pro in August. He triumphed in the U.S. Open boys tournament, the $100,000 Sacramento Challenger and the $50,000 Fairfield Challenger.
   The latter two titles came in Fritz's home state of California. He lives in Rancho Santa Fe in the San Diego area.
   WTA tour -- Nao Hibino, who won the inaugural $50,000 Stockton Challenger in July, beat Donna Vekic of Croatia 6-2, 6-2 recently in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, for her first WTA tour title.
   Hibino, 20, of Japan did not face a seed or drop a set in the tournament. She defeated Ukraine's Anhelina Kalinina, the champion of the $50,000 Sacramento Challenger the week after Stockton, in the first round in Tashkent.
   Only 5-foot-4 (1.6 meters) and 132 pounds (60 kilograms), Hibino has soared from No. 177 in the world before Stockton to No. 79.
   USTA/ITA All-American Championships -- Cal's Andre Goransson and Maegan Manasse and Stanford's Tom Fawcett reached the semifinals of this month's USTA/ITA All-American Championships.
    Goransson, a junior from Sweden, lost to fourth-seeded Dominik Koepfer of Tulane 6-4, 6-4 in Tulsa, Okla. Fawcett, a 6-foot-6 (1.98-meter) sophomore from Winnetka, Ill., fell to third-seeded Thai-Son Kwiatkowski of NCAA champion Virginia 6-3, 6-2.
Nao Hibino, playing in the Sacramento Challenger in July,
recently won her first WTA tour title. Photo by Mal Taam 
   Both Goransson and Fawcett were seeded 9-16. Kwiatkowski won the title.
   Manasse, a junior from Redondo Beach, lost to seventh seed and eventual champion Danielle Collins of Virginia 7-6 (7), 6-3 in Pacific Palisades. Collins won last year's NCAA singles title.
   Second-seeded Manasse and Denise Starr, a junior from Brooklyn, N.Y., won the doubles title with a 6-1, 6-4 victory over unseeded Hayley Carter and Whitney Kay of North Carolina 6-1, 6-4.
   USTA/ITA Northwest Regional Championships -- Stanford's David Wilczynski, a sophomore from Richboro, Pa., topped Mitch Stewart of Washington 6-3, 3-6, 6-4 on Monday in Seattle for the USTA/ITA Men's Northwest Regional title.
   USF's Vasco Valverde and Nils Skajaa took the doubles title, outclassing Stanford's Nolan Paige and Maciek Romanowicz 6-2, 6-2.
   Top-seeded Taylor Davidson of Stanford is scheduled to face ninth-seeded Mayar Ahmed of Fresno State today in the final of the Women's Northwest Regional Championships at Stanford.
   In the doubles final, top-seeded Davidson and Caroline Doyle, from San Francisco, will take on third-seeded Klara Fabikova and Olivia Hauger of Cal.
   USTA National Selection Tournament -- Top-seeded Sara Choy of Palo Alto routed third-seeded Jessi Muljat of Sacramento 6-1, 6-2 to win the girls 16 title in this month's USTA National Selection Tournament at the University of the Pacific in Stockton.
   In the doubles final, unseeded Michelle Deng of Temple City and Rena Lin of Northridge beat top-seeded Choy and Niluka Madurawe of Sunnyvale 8-6.
   Eighth-seeded Jenson Brooksby of Carmichael reached the boys 16 singles semifinals, falling to unseeded Jake Sands of Pacific Palisades 6-1, 6-0. Sands then lost to sixth-seeded Govind Nanda of Redlands.
   Third-seeded Brooksby and Randy Cory of Salinas won the doubles title, beating fourth-seeded Nanda and Sands 8-4 in the final.
   The 16s was the only age group in the tournament.

1 comment:

  1. Hibino is fun to watch. Passionate, intense player. Watch in the near future for a former USF player named James Tallman and of McClatchy High School. I had the privilege of practicing with him over the summer. Can hit 125 mph or higher (seems higher) accurate serves from both left and right (quite amazing to see). Strong, tall, wiry with the athleticism of a Brown or Monfils. Nice guy too. Once he finishes up at USF this semester I believe he turns pro. Can't wait to watch him.

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