USTA Tennis Center - Flushing, New York
Qualifying: August 22-26, 2000
Main Draw: August 28-September 10, 2000
Junior: September 3-10, 2000

Jeff Morrison

Robby Ginepri

Ashley Harkleroad

Marlene Mejia

At The Open With Marcia Frost...

Tuesday, August 22nd PM-Qualifying
Despite the losses of amateur players on day one of the Qualifying, there were some tough matches as players gave it their best shot

One of the most exciting matches of the day was a re-match of the 1999 NCAA Singles final between the University of Florida's Jeff Morrison and James Blake. Though Morrison won the 1999 match, Blake left Harvard to turn professional that summer.

Today's match featured power hitting, serving, and even a few acrobatics by Blake. The most common phrase uttered during the first set was "deuce" as it went all the way to a tie-breaker. Blake pulled out the set (7/4 in the breaker), but lost the second set to a persistent Morrison, 6-3. Unfortunately, Morrison couldn't hold him and eventually lost the match, 7-6(4),3-6,6-1

Top-ranked junior Robby Ginepri came out swinging (literally) in his match against No. 27 seed Petr Luxa. He took the first set easily (6-1) and was holding the second set at 1-1 until Luxa found a second wind and took over the match. Despite an effort from Ginepri that was even more impressive than the score, Luxa prevailed, 1-6,6-1,0-6.

The top-ranked Girls' 18 player also gave it her all today. Ashley Harkleroad kept Rosa Andres on her toes and made her work for her 6-4,6-4 win. Harkleroad kept hammering the ball and kept the points tough -- she just couldn't pull it through.

One of the final matches of the day was between Lisa McShea and the University of North Carolina's Marlene Mejia. Mejia came into the tournament with a wildcard from her win at the ITA National Summer Championships. Proving that she is champion material, Mejia put up a fight before her eventual loss to the more experienced McShea, 3-6,6-3,7-6(7). I look forward to seeing what she will do in the upcoming college season.

Tuesday, August 22nd AM
The Qualifying event gets underway in just a few hours. While there are quite a few interesting matches, the most exciting pair up of the day looks like it will be between the current and former ITA No. 1 players -- Jeff Morrison and James Blake. For anyone in the New York area, the USTA Qualifying is an excellent way to catch some up and coming tennis players free of charge.

Among the 16 wildcards given into the main singles draws, the following were presented to college and junior tennis players:
Andy Roddick-Currently ranked as the No. 1 junior in the world by the ITF
Philip King-USTA Boys' 18 Nationals champion for the last two years
Alex Kim-This year's NCAA singles champion from Stanford
Kristen Schlukebir-USTA Girls' 18 Nationals champion and Claycourts runner-up for 2000
Ansley Cargill-The No. 1 player in the current USTA Girls' 18 National Rankings and No. 18 in the ITF Junior World Rankings.
A wildcard was also given to Laura Granville, this year's NCAA singles champion from Stanford, but she was forced to withdraw due to an injury.

College And Junior Tennis will be at the US Open Championships starting on on August 22nd. We will provide as much information, photographs and interviews as possible on the college and junior players within the Qualifying, Main Draw and Junior Championships, however, there have been certain restrictions placed for Online Media.


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