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Four Seeds Upset in First Round of Main Draw Singles; Main Draw Doubles Action Also Underway

Despite heavy rains wreaking havoc on the ITA/Riviera Women’s All-American Tennis Championships on Wednesday, main draw singles and doubles action still began on Thursday. Four of the top eight seeds were knocked out in the opening round of singles play. All eight doubles seeds received a bye into the next round, preventing any additional upsets from occurring.

The day began with the final round of qualifying doubles, as eight pairs squared off in hopes of earning one of the four qualifying spots in the main draw. All four duos to advance were among the eight seeds, led by the top-seeded pair of Rebeca Delgado and Tatsiana Kapshai from Sacramento State. The other three teams to advance were No. 3 seed Kaitlyn Christian and Sabrina Santamaria (USC), No. 5 seed Courtney Dolehide and Pamela Montez (UCLA), and No. 8 seed Brynn Boren and Sarah Toti (Tennessee).

Main draw action kicked off with the first round of the singles draw, and it was anything but smooth sailing for the seeded players. Preseason No. 1 and top seed Jana Juricova of California found herself locked in a battle with qualifier Anna Bartenstein from Miami (Fla.). Juricova cruised through the first set 6-2, but Bartenstein rallied to take the second set 7-5. The No. 1 player in the nation raised her level of play in the final set, emerging victorious 6-1.

Four of the other eight seeds were not quite as fortunate in their first round matches. No. 3 seed Kristy Frilling from Notre Dame was the highest seeded player to suffer defeat, as she lost a grueling 4-6, 7-5, 6-4 decision to Baylor’s Sona Novakova. Much like Frilling, No. 4 seed Denise Dy of Washington won the opening set of her match. However, SMU’s Marta Lesniak battled through a tiebreaker to win the second set, using the momentum she gained by winning the second set to take the third going away 6-2.  No. 7 seed Nicole Gibbs of Stanford also dropped her opening round match after taking the first set, as Duke’s standout freshman Beatrice Capra bounced back for a 4-6, 6-4, 6-2 triumph. The final seeded player to fall was the No. 8 seed Josipa Bek from Clemson. Bek lost in two tight sets to Texas’ Ariel Ellis 7-6 (4), 6-4.

Play in the main draw wrapped up with the opening round of doubles. The eight seeded duos all earned byes, leaving only eight matches to be played. The qualifiers stole the show, as three of the four advanced on to the next round. The only qualifying pair failing to move on was Dolehide and Montez, losing to fellow qualifiers Boren and Toti. The Bruin tandem was forced to retire due to injury with the score at 4-3.

The schedule of play has been set for Friday, and it is another full day of action. The day is set to begin with main draw doubles at 9 am PST. Main draw singles is slated for 10:45 am PST, with the quarterfinals to be played at 2:15 pm PST. The opening round of consolation singles will start at 12:30 pm PST, and the next round is scheduled for 4:30 pm PST.