June 30th, 2015

Tennis Briefs(3): More US Open Playoffs Winners; ITA Circuit at FSU; More

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3 More Florida Winners at Non-Fla. US Open National Playoff Tennis Events

USO 2010 NP SectionREVThree players went outside the Sunshine State to win regional US Open National Playoffs tournaments in June to qualify for the national event and a shot at reaching the 2015 US Open main draw or qualifying.

Former University of North Florida player Daniel Sotomarino won the men’s doubles title at the USTA New England Section qualifying, teaming with former UNF teammate Hleb Maslau. The 25-year-old Sotomarino of Jacksonville is a native of Peru and earned First Team All-Atlantic Sun Conference honors while at UNF.

Naples’ Jesse Witten, who reached the third round at the US Open in 2009, won the men’s singles title at the USTA Southern Section qualifying. The 32-year-old Witten in the final defeated Georgia Tech player Michael Kay 6-1, 6-4.

Witten also won the men’s doubles with with Vahid Mirzadeh of Wellington, Fla. The former Florida State University player Mirzadeh was fresh off his mixed doubles title-winning run at the Florida Section qualifier.

“Sometimes I surprise myself,” Witten told The Examiner. “I’ve been lucky in that I never had many injuries. I play a number of events to stay in shape and I know what to expect, and I know what I have to offer.”

The 2015 US Open National Playoffs Men’s and Women’s Singles Championships will be held Aug. 21-24. The Men’s and Women’s Doubles Championships will be held Aug. 25-28, and the Mixed Doubles Championships will be held Aug. 26-29.

The winners of the Men’s and Women’s Singles Championships earn a wild card into the US Open Qualifying Tournament at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, held the weekend prior to the US Open. The winners of the Men’s and Women’s Doubles Championships earn a wild card into the main draw of the US Open men’s and women’s doubles draws, while the winner of the Mixed Doubles Championship will earn a wild card into the main draw of the US Open mixed doubles draw.

For more info go to www.usopen.org/events/national_playoffs.

UF, UCF Players Collect Titles at ITA Summer Circuit Tennis at FSU

ITA Summer Circuit LogoFlorida schools dominated the doubles competitions on the first leg of the Southeast Region series of the 2015 ITA (Intercollegiate Tennis Association) Summer Circuit. The first event of the Southeast Region series was held at Florida State University on June 27-29, 2015.

Division Final Results:

Men’s Singles: Cole Fiedel (Georgia Tech) d. Elliott Orkin (University of Florida) 7-6(4), 7-5
Women’s Singles: Madison Harrison (Mississippi State) d. Yukako Noi (Florida State) 6-1, 6-2
Men’s Doubles: Elliott Orkin/Josh Wardell (University of Florida) d. Austin Racine (Troy)/Derrick Racine 8-4
Women’s Doubles: Sofia Baptista/Courtney Cesarini (University of Central Florida) d. Ellie Wright (Buchholz H.S.)/Emily Meadors (Eastside H.S.) 8-5

Of the doubles winners Orkin is a rising junior and Wardell a rising sophomore at the University of Florida. Baptista is a rising senior and Cesarini a rising junior at the University of Central Florida.

The women’s singles champ Harrison is from Bradenton, Fla., and a recent transfer from Kansas to Miss. State. She is the sister of ATP player Ryan Harrison.

Remaining Southeast Region Events:

July 11-13 — Middle Tennessee
July 18-20 — University of Alabama
July 25-27 — University of Florida

Events are open tournaments for all players, and provide a great opportunity for student-athletes to compete during the summer months.

Men’s and women’s singles and doubles champions at the ITA/USTA National Summer Championships receive a wild card into the main draw of the ITA All-American Championships. The men’s and women’s singles and doubles finalists will receive a wild card into the ITA All-American Championships qualifying draw. Players receiving wild cards must be current NCAA Division I student-athletes and must meet all eligibility criteria.

For more info go to www.itatennis.com/Events/ITA_Summer_Circuit.htm.

Non-USTA Members Can Now Enter USTA Florida Tournaments

USTA Florida Logo Image_Co2USTA tournament entry via the TennisLink online system has been modified to allow non-USTA member players to register for or be added to entry-level tournaments in USTA Sections that has elected to allow non-member players.

“This is a big deal as we have never allowed non-members to enter this way,” says USTA Florida Coordinator of Competitive Education Ann Brown. “USTA national is hoping this will increase play in our entry-level tournaments. Not only will junior players be able to enter, but adult entry-level players as well.”

Tournaments that allow non-member players include sanctioned entry-level tournaments including non-team and team event tournaments, and non-sanctioned tournaments.

Players will need to create a USTA account in TennisLink which is free. Tournament directors will no longer be able to create non-member IDs on behalf of players to be entered into an event. All players will need to create a USTA account that can be upgraded into a membership account at any time with the same number.

Moving forward, players that have received a non-member number in the past will have to create a new account number. For additional information contact Ann Brown at brown@florida.usta.com.