ROME, Ga. – The field for the concluding event of the fall collegiate season continues to round into shape, with eight singles competitors representing four divisions of collegiate tennis securing automatic bids during Saturday’s play at the 2017 ITA Oracle Cup, held at the Rome Tennis Center at Berry College in Rome, Georgia.
The Division II, Division III, NAIA and JUCO champions will compete against top Division I competition at the 2017 Oracle ITA National Fall Championships, which takes place November 1-5, in Palm Desert, California.
While the singles champions were decided on Saturday, the Oracle Cup doubles men’s and women’s champions will be crowned on Sunday. The winners of the final two matches, scheduled for an 8:30 a.m. EDT start, will advance to the Oracle ITA National Fall Championships. The women’s doubles final features Wesleyan’s Eudice Chong and Victoria Yu taking on Indianapolis’s Hanna Volikova and Alina Kislitskaya. The men’s final sees Georgia Gwinnett’s Kevin Konfederak and Gilad Berman versus Azusa Pacific’s Oliver Frank and Christian Schmid.
Konfederak was the first player to lock up a trip to California, as he scored a 6-1, 6-1 victory over No. 4 Daniel Ceron of Keiser in the NAIA men’s singles final. This is individual championship No. 9 for Konfederak, who will take part in the ITA’s end of fall national tournament for the third straight year. Konfederak also took home the NAIA doubles title, as he and Berman defeated Keiser’s Ceron and Lagos 6-2, 6-3. Camille Gbaguidi of SCAD won her second consecutive NAIA title at the ITA Oracle Cup. The No. 1 seed won 6-0, 6-2 over No. 2 Megane Bianco of Keiser. Bianco made up for the singles loss by winning the NAIA doubles title with Daniela Farfan. They defeated Georgia Gwinnett’s Margarida Abreu and Emerald Able 6-3, 6-4 in the final.
Tyler JC had all four finalists in the championship matches. Marcus Walters won the men’s singles title over 2016 victor Jorge Martinez 6-4, 6-0, while Tamara Arnold secured the women’s singles title over Kalani Soli 6-1, 6-4. The teammates that turned opponents for singles, turned back to teammates for doubles, with both Walters and Martinez and Arnold and Soli securing divisional doubles titles. Walters and Martinez beat Victor Castro and Bruno Duarte from Cerritos 6-3, 6-2, while Arnold and Soli won 6-3, 6-2 against teammates Maria Genovese and Yuna Ito.
Wesleyan women’s tennis had a productive day on Saturday, with Chong claiming the Division III singles title and a spot in the Oracle ITA National Fall Championships with a 7-6 (4), 6-2 victory over Emory’s Ysabel Gonzalez Rico. Chong then teamed up with Yu to win the DIII doubles title over Emory’s Gonzalez Rico and Bridget Harding 6-1, 6-1 and advance to the Oracle Cup semifinals. There, the 2017 NCAA National Champions in doubles (Chong won her third straight singles national title as well) scored a straight set win over Keiser’s Bianco and Farfan to move one match away from qualifying for the end of fall national championship in doubles. In men’s singles, top-seeded Mohanad Al Houni of Gustavus Adolphus turned away No. 2 Daniel Levine of Carnegie Mellon 6-4, 6-4 to claim the championship and automatic bid to the Oracle ITA National Fall Championships. Chicago’s Jeremy Yuan and Tyler Raclin, the No. 4 seed in the draw, defeated the No. 2 seed out of Bowdoin, Luke Tercek and Grant Urken in the final 3-6, 6-3, 6-4.
Columbus State and Azusa Pacific alternated victories on Saturday in the men’s singles and doubles finals. Columbus State scored the singles victory with Kiranpal Pannu outlasting 2016 ITA Oracle Cup champion Frank in three sets 6-7, 7-6, 6-2. The two would meet later in the day in doubles, with Frank and Schmid claiming a 6-0, 6-3 win against Pannu and Alvaro Regalado. Barry’s Sonja Larsen is the women’s singles champion and DII representative in the Oracle ITA National Fall Championships. Larsen took down Volikova of Indianapolis 2-6, 6-3, 6-2 in the final. Volikova rebounded to win the DII doubles title with teammate Kislitskaya. The duo defeated NYIT’s Lena Dimmer and Alessia Rossetti 6-2, 6-0.
Head to the ITA Oracle Cup event page to view draws, daily recaps, photo gallery links, as well as find live streaming information. You can also follow the conversation on Twitter by following @ITA_Tennis and using the hashtag #OracleCup.