May 14th, 2019
Peru’s Varillas Collects USTA Pro Circuit Pensacola Tennis Crown
The rain finally stopped long enough on Sunday at the Pensacola Futures Championships, a USTA Pro Circuit event, for the singles and doubles champions to be crowned.
When the clouds cleared, top-seeded Juan Pablo Varillas raised the singles title, and No. 3-seeded Alejandro Gomez of Columbia and American Junior Ore won the doubles championship.
The 23-year-old Varillas, at No. 347 on the ATP rankings entering the event, was rarely tested throughout the week and did not drop a set the entire tournament. In the quarterfinals the Peruvian eased past No. 5 seed Felipe Mantilla of Columbia 6-4, 6-1, and in the final defeated No. 2 seed Harrison Adams of the U.S. 6-2, 6-4.
It was his second ITF/USTA Pro Circuit title of 2019 after winning the first two of his career last year.
“It was a really tough week here,” Varillas told the Pensacola News-Journal afterwards. “The conditions were really good for me, being a South American playing on clay, so I was really comfortable…The mental game is really difficult for me, but I’m really trying to improve. It was a really good experience here.”
Gomez/Ore lived on the edge in their last two rounds of the doubles tournament, in the semifinals winning 12-10 in a third-set super-tiebreaker, and in the final defeating unseeded Americans Ian Dempster and Korey Lovett 4-6, 7-6(4), 10-6.
“I kind of compare this to Double-A baseball — with generally the top 300-600 players,” Tournament director Skip Vogelsang told the Pensacola News-Journal of the futures-level event. “These players are just working their butt off traveling from city to city playing these tournaments, trying to earn points to move up in those rankings. And someday play in the US Open — that’s their dream.”
For more USTA Pro Circuit info go to www.usta.com/en/home/pro/pro-tennis-events/pro-circuit.html.