Five of eight men's singles seeds fell on Day One of the 2014 USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships, while third-seeded Hayley Carter of North Carolina was the only female singles seed to lose at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.
Seven of the eight women's singles seeds advanced safely into today's second round. Reigning champion and top-seeded Jamie Loeb, from Ossining, N.Y., defeated Courtney Colton of Vanderbilt, 6-2, 6-1. UCLA's second-seeded Chanelle Van Nguyen also took care of business, winning 6-2, 6-4 over Michigan's Ronit Yurovsky.
The lone women's seed caught by the upset bug was Van Nguyen's counterpart in the bottom half. Carter, a semifinalist here last year and at the 2014 Riviera/ITA Women's All-American Championships, was downed in two contested sets by Rice's Natalie Beazant, 7-6(2), 6-4.
The five remaining women's seeds won fairly comfortably. Fourth-seeded Florida freshman Brooke Austin defeated Ilinca Stoica of Virginia Tech, 6-2, 6-2; Maegan Manasse of California, the fifth seed, defeated a second Florida freshman, Josie Kuhlman, 6-0, 6-1. Sixth-seeded Julia Elbaba of Virginia, a junior from Oyster Bay, N.Y., defeated Zsofi Susanyi of California, 6-2, 6-4.
Elbaba's Cavalier teammate and the seventh seed, Danielle Collins, faced a stiff test when she took on Sydney Campbell of Vanderbilt. Collins needed three sets to defeat the Ohio Valley Regional singles champion, 6-2, 5-7, 6-3. Oklahoma State's Viktoriya Lushkova, seeded eighth, defeated Utah State's McKenzie Davis 6-4, 6-1.
In the men's draw, top-seeded Sebastian Stiefelmeyer of Louisville and second-seeded Yannick Hanfmann of USC both maintained order at the top with straight-set wins. Stiefelmeyer defeated Auburn's Lukas Ollert 6-4, 6-3, and Hanfmann mitigated some early pressure in his 7-6(3), 6-3 victory over Ohio State freshman Mikael Torpegaard. Sixth seeded Axel Alvarez Llamas of Oklahoma was the third and final men's seed to advance, defeating USTA/ITA Small College Super Bowl Champion Fernando Bogajo of Armstrong State.
Amerigo Contini pulled perhaps the biggest upset of the day by ousting third-seeded Mackenzie McDonald of UCLA, 6-3, 1-6, 6-4. McDonald had previously won 11 straight matches to claim the consolation singles title at the Saint Francis Health System ITA Men's All-American Championships and the USTA/ITA Southwest Regional singles title.
Also losing on day one were number four seed Julian Lenz of Baylor, the fifth-seeded Romain Bogaerts of Wake Forest and the seven seed Cameron Norrie of TCU. Eighth-seeded Soren Hess-Olesen was forced to withdraw with a wrist injury before his first-round match.
In women's doubles action, 2014 Riviera/ITA Women's All-American doubles champions Beatrice Gumulya & Jessy Rompies of Clemson squeaked by host Columbia's pair of Tina Jiang & Crystal Leung by the score of 3-6, 7-6(6), 12-10. The second and third-seeded pairs also advanced. Auburn's second-seeded tandem of Pleun Burgmans & Emily Flickinger won narrowly, 6-4, 4-6, 10-8 over North Carolina's Ashley Dai & Kate Vialle, while third-seeded Klara Fabikova & Zsofy Susanyi of California defeated the USTA/ITA National Small College Super Bowl winners, Barry University's Linda Fritshcken & Emma Onila, 6-1, 6-2. The fourth-seeded team, Maegan Manasse & Denise Starr, also of California, were upset by Oklahoma State's Kelsey Laurente & Viktoriya Lushkova, 6-4, 3-6, 10-5.
Men's doubles action saw two of four seeded teams advance into the quarterfinals. Top-pair Yannick Hanfmann & Roberto Quiroz of USC defeated Columbia's Richard Pham & Mike Vermeer 6-1, 6-3, and the third-seeded team from Vanderbilt, Gonzales Austin & Rhys Johnson, defeated Kevin Metka & Ralf Steinbach of Ohio State 6-3, 6-1. Notre Dame's Alex Lawson & Billy Pecor upset the number two seeds from South Florida, Roberto Cid & Sasha Gozun, 7-6(6), 6-2. Tin Ostojic & Tomislav Gregurovic of Wichita State recorded the other upset in the draw, defeating fourth-seeded Nick Chappell & Will Stein of TCU, 7-6(4), 6-3.
The indoor surface of the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center has forced many of the event's players to adjust, and quickly, after competing all summer and fall primarily outdoors. Just last week, Clemson's Gumulya & Rompies played on an entirely different surface: Clay.
"Coming from the Clay Court Invitational in Florida, the surface is totally different," Rompies said. "We're coming from the slow court to indoors, where it's really fast."
Gumulya & Rompies are set for a showdown today with Texas A&M's Ines Deheza & Rachel Pierson, winners of the USTA/ITA Texas Regional doubles championship, The Aggies are a perfect 5-0 this season. Being the top seed, the Tigers feel they are target for every team in New York.
"I'm sure teams play their best because they have nothing to lose against us," said Gumulya. "We just have to play better than them."
Friday's action begins at 9am and showcases Round of 16 singles play, the singles and doubles quarterfinals and additional consolation matches.