The ITA Men’s All-American Championships is back at the University of Tulsa for a seventh straight season, featuring the largest field of any collegiate tennis championship. More than 300 players are expected to compete for the first national title of the 2011-12 college tennis season.
The prestigious nine-day tournament begins on Saturday, October 1st with the prequalifying singles event. The last 16 spots in singles and eight spots in doubles will be on the line when qualifying matches conclude on Wednesday, October 5th. On Thursday, October 6th, main draw play gets underway as 64 singles players and 32 doubles teams vie for the titles.
Singles quarterfinalists, doubles finalists and consolation champions will receive automatic entry into the USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships Nov. 3-6 in Flushing, N.Y.
Though 2010 singles champion Alex Domijan of Virginia is out with an injury, his opponent in last year’s final, Eric Quigley of Kentucky, is back for another run at the title.
A three-time ITA All-American, Quigley tied a Wildcat record in 2010-11 with 45 singles wins on the season. The senior was in top form last fall, winning the USTA/ITA Ohio Valley Regional Championships and capturing the consolation title at the USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships.
This year’s doubles field features Georgia Tech's top-ranked duo of Kevin King and Juan Spir, who reached the 2011 NCAA Division I semifinals. King, a senior, and Spir, a junior, started the 2010-11 season by qualifying at the ITA Men’s All-American Championships and finished it with a Georgia Tech-record 34 wins.
Other top players returning to Tulsa this week are 2010 main draw doubles finalists Blaz Rola and Chase Buchanan of Ohio State, 2011 singles and doubles ITA All-American Henrique Cunha of Duke, and the University of Tulsa’s own Ashley Watling, an ITA Men’s All-American singles quarterfinalist in 2009 and doubles consolation finalist in 2010.
A number of past ITA Men’s All-American champions have gone on to professional success, including John Isner (Georgia), who reached his first Grand Slam quarterfinal at the 2011 US Open; James Blake (Harvard), who peaked at No. 4 in the world in 2006; Bob Bryan (Stanford), an 11-time Grand Slam men’s doubles champion; MaliVai Washington (Michigan), the 1996 Wimbledon men’s singles runner-up; and Mikael Pernfors (Georgia), the 1986 French Open men’s singles runner-up.
For complete coverage of the 2011 ITA Men’s All-American Championships, including access to live video and scoring, please visit ITAtennis.com. Updates and photos will also be provided on the ITA's Facebook and Twitter pages.
Chase Buchanan and Blaz Rola of Ohio State -- 2010 ITA Men's All-American Championships doubles finalists