Where to start? Where to start?
Let’s start in New Mexico where several teams were taking part in the Miner Invitational. It looks like Lee College, the defending JuCo Champions will again be strong. Nadia Lee won the A singles draw with a win over Carolina DeLuca of UTEP, who looks to improve on their recent success. Veronika Makashov, a freshman from Canada, took the C singles draw for UTEP over teammate Austin Lavallii of Michigan. Makashov and DeLuca teamed to also capture the B doubles draw.
On the other end of the spectrum, it appears that my former colleague, Sal Castillo, is still just building at Our Lady of the Lake. The girls won only a single game in their combined first round matches. A whole lot of double bagels being served up.
Tarleton State also competed at the event.
Next we head to Midland where a ton of teams were competing for the first time this fall. Top-seed Bruno Rosa of Rice did not disappoint in the men’s draw. As we know, he can beat just about anyone on any given day and his backhand is as sweet as butter. Seriously, I have a man crush on his backhand, but I digress.
The surprise of the tournament had to be the success of Josh Zavala, who defeated in succession third-seeded Alex Llompart (Pepperdine), Julien Bley (Baylor), and second seeded Andrei Daescu (Oklahoma) en route to the finals where he lost to Rosa 57 64 64. The first two wins really don’t surprise me all that much. I personally think Josh has a lot of pride in being a senior.
John Lewis, the transfer from Alabama, now playing for Texas A&M played well this weekend, as well. He upset Attila Bucko (Baylor) and then topped UT freshman Ben Chen in the third round before falling to Oscar Podlewski of Rice. Podlewski is a transfer from Elon who had a great weekend. He beat three Big XII players in a row: David Gonzalez of Texas Tech, Vasko Mladenov and Lewis to reach the semis.
In the dubs, Llompart and Tearney topped Daescu and Beleleu in the finals. Two Texas teams reached the semis, as Mladenov and Zavala, fell to the eventual winners, 9-8, while freshmen Chen and Daniel Whitehead fell 8-5 to the finalists.
On the women’s side, Baylor’s Jelena Stanivuk topped Mary Weatherholt of Nebraska 6475.
Texas A&M’ freshman Nazari Urbina reached the semifinals. She beat UNT’s Shannon Mackenzie, Rice’s Julie Chao and second seed, Pichittra Thomgdach of Boise State before falling to Weatherholt, 76 75.
Megan Alexander made her first tournament as a TCU Horned Frog a good one. She and teammate Kayla Duncan cruised through the draw for the title. They defeated Varsha Shiva-Shankar and Rebecca Lin of Rice, 8-5 in the semis, then crushed the top seeds, Thongdach and Lauren Megale of Boise State, 8-1 in the final.
Now down to Austin, where the wild card tournament was being held for the 10sPortal.com $15k that will be held in a few weeks. I believe there is another WC tournament this weekend.
This event was won by Dimitar Kutrovsky of the Texas, who beat teammate Ed Corrie in the finals, 64 62. Kutrovsky beat A&M’s Elexis Klegou, 46 64 10-4 in a tough semifinal. Corrie beat Peter Czajka, 62 63.
This was a strange tournament, as many WC tournaments can be. Lots of no shows and bizarre results. klegou started slow, giving up three games in the first set against a 14-year old, albeit a very talented one. Then he makes a good run and defeats former UT player Miguel Reyes Varela, 57 62 10-8. Reyes Varela had his own weird tournament, squeaking past Jorge Bouffier, who is very good and beat a few players this summer, but was on the UT Intramural Club team the last few years, 57 63 10-8. He then dispatched of Keyvon Karimi, 76 62.
Corrie and Reyes Varela took the doubles title with a convincing 75 60 win over former Ouachita Baptist star Emilien Rabin and Robert VanSwelm.