2007 USTA BOYS' 18 & 16 NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS
Kalamazoo College - Kalamazoo, Michigan - August 4-12, 2007
Saturday, August 11, 2007-Day Eight
The day began with the quarterfinal consolation round and few surprises. The matches finished rather quickly with the 18s semis going back on the court in the afternoon. Since JT Sundling had a doubles final in the afternoon, it was decided that the 16s wouldn't play consolation again until the morning when he will face Dennis Kudla and Matthew Kandath will play Walker Kehrer.
Despite a quick and easy win in the morning against second-seeded Kellen Damico, 29th seed Adam El Mihdawy wasn't able to get past No. 25 Jeff Dadamo in the afternoon. Jeff will play Ryan Harrison for 5th place. Unseeded Ryan advanced with wins over Jordan Rux (15) and Austin Krajicek (8).
Between the consolation matches the main draw continued to the final rounds. The first was the 16s match up between second-seeded Lawrence Formentera and fourth-seeded James "Bo" Seal. It was a 3-0 start for Lawrence, but that was definitely not a sign of things to come. Bo came alive with precision play and fantastic volleying to win six straight games, taking the set. The second set was very much like the first, though the points and games were longer, as the first two games went to Lawrence before Bo took control and his place in the final.
It's interesting to note that while the 18s players did seem a bit larger, I really didn't see that the level of play was that much higher. Top-seeded Michael McClune, the only professional player in this tournament, took on Ty Trombetta (30) with precision. There were a few crowd-pleasing points in his 6-3,6-1 that included an 11-game winning streak. The points were definitely more exciting from the start with No. 3 Ryan Thacher and No. 6 Mateusz Kecki, but a shoulder problem that didn't respond to treatment on court didn't help and Ryan took it, 6-2,6-4. (Mateusz withdrew from the 3rd place playoff, giving Ty Trombetta an automatic silver ball.)
At the awards ceremony for the 16s doubles, Bo Seal's father remarked how the two doubles teams -- who were getting ready to play each other the next day -- sat together at the dinner table the previous night. He thought it was a great testament to the character of the boys. I see it in the spirit of Kalamazoo that will continue with Sunday's singles finals.
Click Here For The Official USTA Nationals Boys 18 Website
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Nate Schnugg & Kellen Damico
Adam El Mihdawy
Sekou Coker Bangoura
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