Top U.S. juniors ready for
Girls’ 18s Nationals
J. Fred Sidhu | August 4, 2016
With its beautiful scenic beaches, the Southern California coast is a summer vacation destination for many. But for the top junior girls in the United States and Puerto Rico, it is a place filled with hopes and dreams as they prepare for the 2016 USTA Girls’ 16s & 18s National Championships, Aug. 6-14 at the Barnes Tennis Center.
Nearly 400 girls 18 and under will compete for the title of national champion, as well as a wild card entry into the US Open women’s singles main draw (for the 18s champion) and a wild card into the US Open Junior Championships (for the 16s champion). The 18s doubles champions will also receive a wild card into the US Open women’s doubles main draw.
The Girls’ 16s event will begin on Saturday, Aug. 6, and wrap up with the singles and doubles finals on Saturday, Aug. ADVERTISEMENT 13.
The Girls’ 18s tournament will start on Sunday, Aug. 7, and conclude with the 18s singles championship on Sunday, Aug. 14. Both divisions feature 192-player singles draws and doubles draws with 96 teams.
Headlining the Girls’ 18s singles division is Amanda Anisimova (pictured above). The 14-year-old from Aventura, Fla., reached the girls’ singles final at Roland Garros in June and is ranked in the Top 5 in the ITF Junior Rankings.
Other entries in the Girls’ 18s singles division include 2016 Wimbledon girls’ singles semifinalist Kayla Day of Santa Barbara, Calif., and Usue Arconada of Rio Piedras, P.R. and Claire Liu of Thousand Oaks, Calif., who combined to win the Wimbledon girls' doubles title earlier this summer.
The Girls’ 16s singles division will feature a strong field with many young, talented competitors eager to win the USTA national title on hard courts. The field includes 2016 Easter Bowl 16s singles champion Angelica Blake of Boca Raton, Fla., and Katie Volynets, a 14-year-old from Walnut Creek, Calif., who captured the national hard court singles title in the 14s in 2015 and the 12s in 2014.
Other players to watch in the Girls’ 16s division include Gabriella Price of Montebello, N.Y., Marlee Zein of Sugar Land, Texas and Nicole Mossmer of La Jolla, Calif.
“The Girls’ Nationals in San Diego is a very special event with so many outstanding players from each USTA Section coming together in the same venue,” said Co-Tournament Director Liz Blum. “The level of competition in the Girls’ 16s and 18s divisions is incredibly high from the very first day of the tournament.”
Many of today’s current stars have competed in the USTA Girls’ 18s, and past tournament champions include Chris Evert, Tracy Austin, Andrea Jaeger, Zina Garrison, Mary Joe Fernandez, Jennifer Capriati and Lindsay Davenport.
“It’s been fun watching past tournament champions and participants such as Sloane Stephens, Madison Keys, CoCo Vandeweghe, Shelby Rogers and others make great strides on the women’s professional tennis tour,” said Co-Tournament Director Ellen Ehlers. “Each year we are amazed with the depth of our player field and this year is certainly no different. Spectators will have a chance to watch the stars of the future.”
In addition to the US Open wild cards that are traditionally awarded, additional wild cards for the US Open Junior Championships and wild cards to various women’s USTA Pro Circuit tournaments will also be awarded this year.
The following wild cards will be awarded at the 2016 USTA Girls’ 16s & 18s National Championships:
Girls' 18 Singles Champion — US Open: Singles Main Draw & US Open Juniors: Singles Main Draw *
Girls' 18 Doubles Champions — US Open: Doubles Main Draw & US Open Juniors: Doubles Main Draw (Same partner only)*
Girls' 18 Singles Finalist — US Open: Singles Qualifying & US Open Juniors: Singles Main Draw *
Girls' 18 Singles 3rd Place — US Open Juniors: Singles Main Draw & USTA Women's 50K Pro Circuit Event: Singles Main Draw *
Girls' 18 Singles 4th Place — US Open Juniors: Singles Qualifying & USTA Women's 10k or 25K Pro Circuit Event: Singles Main Draw (2)*
Girls' 18 Singles 5th Place — US Open Juniors: Singles Qualifying & USTA Women's 10k or 25K Pro Circuit Event: Singles Main Draw*
Girls' 16 Singles Champion — US Open Juniors: Singles Main Draw
Girls' 16 Singles Finalist — USTA Women's 10k or 25K Pro Circuit Event: Singles Main Draw
Girls' 16 Singles 3rd Place — USTA Women's 10k or 25K Pro Circuit Event: Singles Main Draw
Girls' 16 Singles 4th Place — USTA Women's 10k or 25K Pro Circuit Event: Singles Qualifying
Girls' 16 Singles 5th Place — USTA Women's 10k or 25K Pro Circuit Event: Singles Qualifying
*Players must be age eligible according to ITF rules to accept ITF Junior Wild Cards.
(USTA Player Development will determine USTA Pro Circuit event for each wild card awarded)
The Barnes Tennis Center, which is owned and operated by Youth Tennis San Diego and features 22 hard courts, is located at 4490 W. Point Loma Blvd., San Diego, CA, 92107. Early-round matches will also be played at San Diego State University’s Aztec Tennis Center, 5375 Remington Rd., San Diego, CA, 92115, from Saturday, Aug. 6, through Tuesday, Aug. 9.
Admission and on-site parking at the Barnes Tennis Center is free each day of the tournament. For spectators watching matches at SDSU, admission is free, but there is a nominal charge for on-campus parking. University parking regulations will be strictly enforced.