Friday, April 8, 2016

Riffice beats ex-Roseville neighbor in Easter Bowl

   Sam Riffice and Keenan Mayo grew up a few houses apart in the Sacramento, Calif., suburb of Roseville.
   Riffice, seeded No. 5, defeated Mayo 6-2, 6-4 Thursday to reach the boys 18 quarterfinals in the prestigious Easter Bowl in Indian Wells, Calif.
   Riffice, 17, is ranked No. 1 nationally in the 18s, and Mayo, 15, is No. 32 in the 16s. They train at the USTA centers in Boca Raton, Fla., and Carson, Calif., respectively.
   Riffice, who will face third-seeded Nathan Ponwith of Scottsdale, Ariz., was the runner-up to Taylor Fritz in last year's Easter Bowl 18s. Fritz, 18, has skyrocketed to No. 79 in the men's world rankings since turning pro last August.
   Meanwhile, No. 4 seed Michaela Gordon of Saratoga, Calif., advanced to the girls 18 quarterfinals with a 6-1, 6-4 victory over Sofia Sewing of Doral, Fla.
   Gordon, 16, will play No. 8 Alexandra Sanford of Westerville, Ohio. Sanford, 17, reached the quarterfinals of the $100,000 Dow Corning Tennis Classic in Midland, Mich., in February as a qualifier.
   No. 13 Elie Douglas of McKinney, Texas, held off No. 8 Emma Higuchi of Los Angeles 6-4, 7-6 (8). Higuchi plans to enroll at Stanford in the fall.
   In the girls 16 semifinals, No. 7 Angelica Blake of Boca Raton, Fla., routed No. 6 Rachel Eason of Union City, Calif., 6-1, 6-2.
   No. 11 Max Fardanesh of Albany, Calif., won the boys 12 title, knocking off No. 1 Samuel Landau of Los Angeles 6-4, 6-2.

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