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Favorites emerge after Day 1 at 4.5 Adult Nationals

October 26, 2012 03:05 PM
During the 2012 USTA League 4.5 Adult National Championships held at the Reffkin Tennis Center, in Tucson, Ariz on October 26.
By Melissa Krueger, Special to USTA.com

TUCSON, Ariz. — Day 1 at the 2012 USTA League 4.5 Adult National Championships ended with statement wins from various teams. Both the Texas women and Mid-Atlantic men finished their first day at Nationals with a sweep over their opponents.  

The women from Houston, Texas, established their win over the Southwest section with outstanding singles play. In the No. 1 singles match, Jamie Cohen of Texas defeated Southwest’s Rocio Mora in straight sets, 6-1, 6-3. Then, in No. 2 singles, Pia-Alexandra Vantho of Texas had a straight-set victory over Joanna Torres of the Southwest women, 6-2, 6-3.

The Texas women are undefeated in their flight (2-0). They will play their final event in flight play on Saturday at 12:30 p.m. (PDT) against the Eastern section.

Like the Texas women, the Mid-Atlantic men had a dominant performance against the men from the Caribbean, winning 5-0. The men from Roanoke, Va., rarely fell into trouble in the event as four out of their five matches were decided in straight sets.

The Mid-Atlantic men are the only unbeaten team in their flight, and they will face the men from the Northern section in their final match in flight play on Saturday at 10:30 a.m. (PDT).

Other 2-0 teams going into Day 2 include Southern California women and men, Eastern women, Midwest men, Southwest men, and Texas men.

As the weather warmed throughout the day, so did the competition. Day 1 has featured many closely-played events.

Earlier in the day, the women from the Southern section went up 3-1 early against the Missouri Valley team, but they did not claim their 3-2 victory until after the marathon No. 2 singles match between Southern’s Jennifer Poudrier and Laura Dunaway of Missouri Valley.

Dunaway came away with the win, 6-3, 4-6, 1-0, but it did not come easily. The match lasted nearly two hours and, according to Dunaway, felt even longer.

"I definitely started to peter out a little bit," she said after the match. "Towards the end, I was like, My feet are hurting."

After losing the second set, Dunaway was down 3-7 in the set tiebreak. She credited her relaxed mindset as the reason she was able to come back for the win.

"I’m normally more intense, so I think it really worked in my favor that I just stayed calm, didn’t go for too much, and played my game and had a good time, which is the important thing," she said.

On the men’s side, the Middle States section came away with a close 3-2 victory over Missouri Valley. Four out of the team’s five matches went to three-set tiebreaks. The men from Philadelphia were anchored by their No. 1 and No. 2 doubles teams.

Dejan Blagovcanin of Middle States and Mark Nottingham defeated Missouri Valley’s Rustin Reys and Jonathan Rothfusz in three sets, 6-4, 4-6, 1-0. In No. 2 singles, Alain Boletta and Ryan Collins lost the first set to Jordan Dunseth and Drew Osbourne of Missouri Valley, but they were able to rally in the second and third sets to win, 2-6, 6-2, 1-0.

In the early morning matches, the men from the Eastern section completed the first sweep of the day against the men from the Hawaii section, 5-0. The men from Bogota, N.J., dominated all five matches, with only the No. 2 singles matchup going to a three-set tiebreak.

Eastern’s Rushan Samarasinghe lost the first set of his match against Hawaii’s Jeff Grimmer, 5-7, but he came roaring back in the second with a 6-0 win. Samarasinghe carried that momentum into the tiebreaker.

The Eastern women also found early success on Day 1. They had a commanding victory over the Southwest women, 4-1. The women from New York City rarely faltered against the team from El Paso, Texas, even beating Southwest’s twin sisters Maru Barua and Miroslava Barua in No. 2 doubles, 6-0, 6-4.

By day’s end, the women from the Eastern section were 2-0 in their flight, tied atop the flight with Texas. In their final match in flight play, Eastern will play Texas at 12:30 p.m. (PDT) on Saturday.

Also with a 4-1 victory were the Texas men over the men from Florida. They were anchored by superb singles play from Raymond Martinez and Hersh Pise.

Check back tomorrow for more tournament updates.

4.5 Women’s Standings
Flight 1
Midwest (Cleveland, Ohio) (2-0)
Caribbean (San Juan, P.R.) (0-2)
Hawaii (Maui, Hawaii) (0-2)
Northern California (Sacramento, Calif.) (1-1)
Southern California (Laguna Hills, Calif.) (2-0)

Flight 2
Texas (Houston, Texas) (2-0)
Southwest (El Paso, Texas) (0-2)
Florida (Tampa Bay, Fla.) (0-2)
Eastern (New York City) (2-0)

Flight 3
Missouri Valley (St. Louis, Mo.) (0-1)
New England (Natick, Mass.) (1-0)
Pacific Northwest (Bremerton, Wash.) (0-1)
Southern (Hilton Head, S.C.) (1-0)

Flight 4

Middle States (Doylestown, Pa.) (1-0)
Mid-Atlantic (Montgomery County, Md.) (0-1)
Intermountain (Colorado Spring, Colo.) (0-1)
Northern (St. Louis Park, Minn.) (1-0)

4.5 Men’s Standings
Flight 5

Midwest (Winona Lake, Ind.) (2-0)
New England (Falmouth, Maine) (0-2)
Middle States (Philadelphia) (1-1)
Southwest (Phoenix) (2-0)
Missouri Valley (Kansas City) (0-2)

Flight 6
Mid-Atlantic (Roanoke, Va.) (2-0)
Caribbean (San Juan, P.R.) (0-2)
Northern (Bloomington, Minn.) (1-1)
Intermountain (Salt Lake City) (1-1)

Flight 7
Florida (Orlando, Fla.) (1-1)
Eastern (Bogota, N.J.) (1-1)
Texas (Houston, Texas) (2-0)
Hawaii (Kailua, Hawaii) (0-2)

Flight 8
Pacific Northwest (Mill Creek, Wash.) (1-1)
Northern California (Walnut Creek, Calif.) (0-1)
Southern (Louisville, Ky.) (1-1)
Southern California (Los Angeles) (1-0)


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