MILWAUKEE, Wisc. – Life is all about adjustments.
Miami’s Sinead Lohan can attest to that.
After spending the first two days of the 42nd annual Milwaukee Tennis Classic adjusting to playing on clay, Lohan moved to an indoor surface inside the UWM Panther Area in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, to take on Syracuse’s Miranda Ramirez in the women’s singles final.
Playing on two different surfaces in three days was a challenge, but it paled in comparison to what Lohan and her University of Miami teammates went through before, during and after Hurricane Irma. The team grabbed what they could and departed Miami for Orlando, where they stayed for a week before returning to Coral Gables last week.
“We didn’t practice for nearly two weeks,” said Lohan, the No. 1 seed in the tournament and ranked eighth nationally. “We worked on our fitness, but didn’t hit a ball until we got back to campus, because we didn’t have any of our gear with us. When we got back together, everyone was very focused and knew they had to work extra hard with tournaments coming up.”
The play of the fourth-seeded Ramirez on Sunday forced Lohan to make adjustments on the court. After dropping the first set 2-6, Lohan jumped out to a 4-1 lead in the second, only to see Ramirez win the next three games to level the set 4-4. The Miami senior settled herself and went on to win the next two games to even the match at a set apiece, then found her rhythm in the third set to win the set and match 6-2.
“I got off to a slow start in the first set,” said Lohan, who receives a wildcard entry into the 2017 Oracle ITA National Fall Championships for winning the ITA Gold Level event. “I started playing more aggressive tennis in the second set and she started breaking down. I hit a high first-serve percentage (Sunday), which I hadn’t been doing all weekend. I think I was just mentally tougher in the end, competing hard and making more balls.”
Like Lohan, Virginia Tech’s Mitch Harper had to rally from a slow start in the men's singles final.
Harper dropped the opening set to hometown favorite and University of Minnesota senior Felix Corwin 4-6, but nabbed the second set 6-2 to set up the decider, which saw Harper come out on top 6-3 to claim the championship and wildcard into the 2017 Oracle ITA National Fall Championships.
Tamuna Kutubidze and Maria Kononova of North Texas won the women’s doubles title with an 8-2 victory over Mia Jurasic and Ana Oparenovic of Arkansas. Jacob Nicolussi and Michael Weindl of Old Dominion defeated Minnesota’s Corwin and Jackson Allen 8-1 in the final.
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