Americans post solid results on the clay on Day 1 of Orange Bowl

December 6, 2011 06:15 AM
By Andrew Labovitz, special to

– For the past 13 years, the world’s best junior tennis players have annually gathered at the purple hard courts of the Crandon Park Tennis Center in Key Biscayne, Fla., to compete in the prestigious Orange Bowl International Tennis Championships. But this year, the USTA opted to shift the event – now in its 65th year – back to its roots, moving the event to green clay courts for the first time since 1998. Though clay is sometimes considered to be the least preferred surface of American professionals, a number of American juniors recorded quality wins on the event’s opening day at the Frank Veltri Tennis Center in Plantation, Fla.

The Americans were led by wild card Harrison Adams, a 17-year-old from New Braunfels, Texas, who recorded the day’s biggest upset, taking down No. 3 seed and 2011 Wimbledon boys’ quarterfinalist Robin Kern of Germany, 6-0, 6-7 (6), 6-2. Adams, who recently spent a week training with top American Ryan Harrison, credited those practice sessions for his service returns today, as he was repeatedly able to return Kern’s massive serves. Adams fared much better on his own service games, as he did not face a single break point en route to the victory. 

"I wanted to get off to a good start against such a great player," said Adams, "but I played well and made a lot of returns to make him play, which I think surprised him. And I was serving really well today, which was obviously a big key."

Another American upset came via one of the youngest competitors in the boys’ 18s draw, as wild card Noah Rubin, a 15-year-old from Rockville Centre, N.Y., stunned No. 9 seed Karim Hossam of Egypt, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3. Rubin reached the final of the USTA Boys’ 16s National Clay Court Championships in July and appeared very comfortable on the clay-court surface. Rubin advanced despite having to deal with multiple cramps in the third set but was buoyed by the fact that his opponent was likewise struggling with an injured leg. Moreover, Rubin was very confident despite his relative youth.

"I like being one of the younger players," he said afterwards. "I feel like it completely takes the pressure off me and places it squarely on my opponents."

Two Americans likewise recorded upsets of seeded players in the girls’ 18s draw, including 16-year-old Jennifer Brady of Boca Raton, Fla., who came from a set down to knock off No. 14 seed Carol Zhao of Canada, 2-6, 6-4, 6-2. Brady has posted a number of quality results on clay already this year, reaching the final at two ITF World Junior events in Florida in May, including a victory in Delray Beach without dropping a single set.

Samantha Crawford, a 16-year-old from Tamarac, Fla., and arguably the draw’s most physically imposing player at 6-foot-2, also recorded an upset, steamrolling past No. 11 Zarah Razafimahatratra of Madagascar, 6-0, 6-3. Crawford, who won the USTA International Spring Championships in April and trains full-time at the USTA Training Center-Headquarters in Boca Raton, Fla., ruthlessly attacked the ball as she routinely bludgeoned winners via both her serve and groundstrokes past Razafimahatratra.

Other American girls winning on the opening day of play included wild card Sachia Vickery of Miramar, Calif., who is playing in just her fourth junior event of 2011 after spending much of the year competing in professional events, and Kendal Woodard of Stockbridge, Ga., who at No. 657 in the ITF World Junior Rankings, faced Katerina Siniakova of the Czech Republic, currently ranked nearly 600 slots higher at No. 69. Woodard displayed both skill and poise that belied her ranking, beating Siniakova, 7-5, 3-6, 7-6 (8).

The day’s marquis match pitted No. 3 seed Indy De Vroome of the Netherlands, a Wimbledon girls’ semifinalist, against wild card Krista Hardebeck of Santa Ana, Calif., the 2010 Easter Bowl champion, who carries a WTA ranking of No. 430. Though Hardebeck came into the match with far more professional experience, De Vroome proved to be exceedingly comfortable on the clay surface and advanced with a 7-5, 6-3, victory.

Tuesday’s schedule will complete the first round of both the boys’ and girls’ 18s draws and will feature the top two seeds of both draws, including both champions of last week’s Eddie Herr, top-seeded Dominic Thiem of Austria and No. 2 seed Yulia Putintseva of Russia. Tuesday will also feature the second round of both the boys’ and girls’ 16s draws.

Orange Bowl International Tennis Championship
Frank Veltri Tennis Center, Plantation, Fla.
Monday, December 05, 2011

Girls 18s Singles – First Round
Deborah Kerfs (BEL) def. (WC) Hayley Carter (Columbia, S.C.), 0-6, 4-2, Ret.
Mai El Kamash (EGY) def. Ayaka Okuno (JPN), 4-6, 6-1, 6-4
(13) Elizaveta Kulichkova (RUS) def. Chalena Scholl (Pompano Beach, Fla.), 6-3, 6-3
Christina Makarova (San Diego) def. Abbie Myers (AUS), 7-6(3), 6-2
Kendal Woodard (Stockbridge, Ga.) def. Katerina Siniakova (CZE), 7-5, 3-6, 7-6(8)
(7) Donna Vekic (CRO) def. Megane Bianco (SUI), 6-0, 6-1
(3) Indy De Vroome (NED) def. (WC) Krista Hardebeck (Santa Ana, Calif.), 7-5, 6-3
(WC) Anne-Liz Jeukeng (Kansas City, Mo.) def. Jelena Ostapenko (LAT), 6-4, 3-6, 6-4
Julia Elbaba (Oyster Bay, N.Y.) def. Katy Dunne (GBR), 7-5, 6-0
(WC) Sachia Vickery (Miramar, Fla.) def. Diana Bogoliy (UKR), 6-0, 7-5
Karin Kennel (SUI) def. Mayar Sherif (EGY), 6-3, 7-5
(4) Ilka Csoregi (ROU) def. (WC) Breaunna Addison (Boca Raton, Fla.) 6-4, 6-2
Viktoriya Tomova (BUL) def. Kyle McPhillips (Willoughby, Ohio), 6-2, 6-0
Samantha Crawford (Tamarac, Fla.) def. (11) Zarah Razafimahatratra (MAD), 6-0, 6-3
Jennifer Brady (Boca Raton, Fla.) def. (14) Carol Zhao (CAN), 2-6, 6-4, 6-2
Anna Danilina (KAZ) def. Alejandra Cisneros (MEX), 6-3, 6-1

Boys’ 18s Singles – First Round
Lukas Mugevicius (LTU) def. Danil Zelenkov (MKD), 7-5, 6-2
Connor Farren (Hillsborough, Calif.) def. Vlad Victor Cornea (ROU), 4-6, 6-4, 6-2
(10) Kimmer Coppejans (BEL) def. (WC) Austin Siegel (Tarrytown, N.Y.), 6-0, 6-1
Jordan Angus (GBR) def. Pedro Guimaraes (BRA), 3-6, 6-0, 6-2
(8) Xin Gao (CHN) def. William Kwok (Bradenton, Fla.), 6-3, 6-3
(12) Yoshihito Nishioka (JPN) def. (WC) Spencer Papa (Edmond, Okla.), 6-2, 6-2
Jeroen Vanneste (BEL) def. Krittin Koaykul (THA), 6-4, 6-1
Kai-Wen Lai (TPE) def. Daniel Santos (PER), 6-3, 6-0
(6) Julien Cagnina (BEL) def. (WC) Roy Lederman (Golden Beach, Fla.), 6-2, 6-3
Markos Kalovelonis (GRE) def. Tendai Tapfuma (ZIM), 7-5, 7-6(1)
(11) Pedja Krstin (SRB) def. (WC) Ronnie Schneider (Bloomington, Ind.), 6-2, 6-4
Konstantin Gerlakh (RUS) def. Sam Hutt (GBR), 6-0, 6-4
Filip Peliwo (CAN) def. Rishabdev Raman (IND), 6-1, 6-1
(WC) Harrison Adams (New Braunfels, Texas) def. (3) Robin Kern (GER), 6-0, 6-7(6), 6-2
(WC) Noah Rubin (Rockville Centre, N.Y.) def. (9) Karim Hossam (EGY), 6-4, 3-6, 6-3
(15) Stefan Vinti (ROU) def. Luis Pilatuna (MEX), 6-4, 6-1

Girls’ 16s Singles - First Round
(Q) Karoline Kurz (AUT) def. Fiona Codino (FRA), 6-2, 6-0
Keisha Clousing (Wheaton, Ill.) def. (Q) Olivia Hauger (Tulsa, Okla.), 6-1, 6-3
(13) Erin Routliffe (CAN) def. Yuki Chiang (Ojai, Calif.), 6-1, 6-0
Caroline Doyle (San Francisco) def. (11) Jacqueline Cabaj Awad (SWE), 6-2, 6-1
(WC) Tornado Ali Black (Boca Raton, Fla.) def. (Q) Alexandra Bourguignon (Issaquah, Wash.), 6-3, 6-2
Alyssa Smith (Laguna Niguel, Calif.) def. (LL) Andie Daniell (Douglasville, Ga.), 6-4, 6-4
(LL) Terri Fleming (Alpharetta, Ga.) def. Gabrielle Smith (Henderson, Nev.), 5-7, 6-3, 6-4
(WC) Kaitlyn McCarthy (Cary, N.C.) def. (LL) Emma Burgess (Huntsville, Ala.), 6-4, 6-1
(Q) Anna Sokiran (RUS) def. (WC) Nicole Frenkel (Winchester, Mass.), 4-6, 6-3, 6-3
(5) Alexandra Morozova (Plantation, Fla.) def. (LL) Sonja Balic (AUS), 6-3, 7-5
(WC) Alexandra Miller-Krasilnikov (Boca Raton, Fla.) def. (16) Jessica Cortes (MEX), 6-3, 6-1
(LL) Maria Smith (Houston) def. Shaan Phagura (Castro Valley, Calif.), 6-2, 6-1
Kimberly Yee (Las Vegas) def. (LL) Ariana Rodriguez (Bronx, N.Y.), 6-1, 6-2
(WC) Cassandra Vazquez (Houston) def. (LL) Juli Raventos (CRC), 6-1, 6-2
Dasha Ivanova (Beaverton, Ore.) def. Manca Pislak (SLO), 6-4, 7-5
(9) Josie Kuhlman (Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.) def. (Q) Bennett Dunn (Plantation, Fla.), 6-4, 6-3
Mariana Gould (Boise, Idaho) def. (Q) Alizee Michaud (FRA), 6-3, 6-4
Jamie Loeb (Ossining, N.Y.) def. (Q) Cassie Pough (Miami), 6-0, 6-2

Boys’ 16s Singles – First Round
(1) Anton Desyatnik (RUS) def. Anton Khyzhkin (UKR) 3-6, 6-4, 7-6(6)
(WC) Jared Donaldson (Cumberland, R.I.) def. (Q) Anton Redvanov (UKR), 6-4, 6-4
Tommy Mylnikov (CAN) def. (16) Maksim Yorsh (BLR), 6-4, 6-4
Lamar Remy (Roslyn, N.Y.) def. Sebastian Ofner (AUT), 6-0, 6-0
(Q) Shane Monroe (Ventnor City, N.J.) def. Yifan Dang (CHN), 4-6, 7-6(5), 6-0
(Q) Chase Perez-Blanco (Miami) def. (8) Carter Lin (Bradenton, Fla.), 7-6(3), 6-0
(4) Hugo Di Feo (CAN) def. Yale Goldberg (Beachwood, Ohio), 6-1, 6-4
(LL) Alexandru Gozun (Sarasota, Fla.) def. (WC) Henrik Wiersholm (Kirkland, Wash.), 6-4, 2-6, 6-4
Andrei Stefan Apostol (ROU) def. Dennis Uspensky (Atlantic Beach, N.Y.), 3-6, 6-1, 6-2
Weigiang Zheng (CHN) def. (LL) A.J. Catanzariti (Pittsburgh), 4-6, 6-3, 7-5
Aleksandr Spirin (RUS) def. (LL) Justin Fields (New York City), 6-4, 7-5
Nicolas Jarry (CHI) def. (11) Jordi Arconada (ARG), 7-6(5), 2-6, 6-2
(14) Lucas Miedler (AUT) def. (Q) Runhao Hua (CHN), 6-1, 6-2
(WC) Tommy Paul (Greenville, N.C.) def. (LL) Diego Nunez Felix (MEX), 6-3, 2-6, 6-2
(Q) Baker Newman (Miami) def. Daniel Shebshayevich (Tamarac, Fla.), 6-3, 6-3
(5) Brayden Schnur (CAN) def. Martin Redlicki (Hawthorn Woods, Ill.), 6-2, 6-4
(Q) Lucas Meirelles Guitarrari (BRA) def. Andres Cabezas (ECU), 6-4, 6-2
(10) Patrick Ciorcila (ROU) def. (Q) Nicholas Crystal (Waccabuc, N.Y.), 6-3, 6-2
(15) Julian Zlobinsky (Greenvale, N.Y.) def. (LL) Logan Smith (Spring, Texas), 7-5, 6-2
(LL) Vadym Kalyuzhnyy (UKR) def. Gustav Hansson (SWE), 6-3, 7-5
(2) Franz Sydow (NED) def. (Q) Marcelo Tebet Filho (BRA), 6-3, 6-0