Ruffice, Ponwith, Kypson and Trotter Advance, Doubles Championship Also Set On Very Busy Fifth Day Of Futures
EDWARDSVILLE - Sam Riffice, Nathan Ponwith, Patrick Kypson and James Kent Trotter all advanced to Saturday's singles semifinals, while the doubles championship match was set on a very busy fifth day of the 11th Edwardsville Futures tennis tournament presented by the EGHM Foundation Friday at the Edwardsville Tennis Center.
For the first time since opening day, rain didn't interfere with the order of play, and the day turned out to be sunny and warm, with the temperatures in the upper 70s-lower 80s, although a bit humid. Nevertheless, some very good and exciting matches were played. Total attendance figures for the day were 482 fans who came, increasing the week's total to 1,692. It was also Fan Appreciation Day, where Edwardsville residents were admitted free and the Diversity Day clinic, postponed from Wednesday, was held at Liberty Middle School and attracted 50 underserved youth players from all over the St. Louis area. University of Illinois player Kweisi Kenyatte and other coaches helped the players learn and sharpen their skills and later were invited to watch the matches free of charge.
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In the remaining second-round singles match, Michael Zheng of the United States defeated sixth-seeded Peter Bertram of the Dominican Republic 6-1, 6-7 (3-7 in the tiebreak), 6-3 to advance to the quarterfinals. In the quarters, Riffice won over Zheng 6-4, 6-1, it was Ponwith, the eighth seed and last remaining seeded player in the field, winning over Jack Anthrop of the United States 1-6, 6-3, 6-4, Kypson defeated fifth-seeded Ezekiel Clark of the USA 7-6 (7-3 in the tiebreaker), 6-4 and Trotter, playing for Japan, eliminated Latvia's Karlis Ozolins 6-4, 6-3.
In the doubles quarterfinals, the top-seeded team of Purav Raja and Divij Sharan of India eliminated Americans George Goldhoff and Mac Kiger 6-0. 4-6. 10-7, the American team of Ryan Dickerson and Kyle Seelig defeated Hunter Heck of the United States and Fnu Nidunjianzan of China 6-1. 7-6 (7-4 in the tiebreak) and second seeds Makuto Ochi and Seita Watanabe of Japan defeated Ozolins and Martins Rocens of Latvia 7-6 (9-7 in the tiebreak), 7-5.
The doubles semifinals were also played on Friday, and Kenyatte and his partner, Cooper Williams, eliminated Raja and Sharan 6-3, 3-6, 10-8 and Ochi and Watanabe advanced to the final with a 6-7 (6-8 in the tiebreak), 7-6 (7-2 in the tiebreak), 10-5 win over Dickerson and Seelig.
The singles semifinals are set to start at 10 a.m. Saturday morning, with Riffice facing Ponwith and Kypson meeting Trotter not before 11 a.m. The doubles final between Kenyatte and Williams meeting Ochi and Watanabe will take place following the singles semifinals. The singles final is set for Sunday morning, starting at 10 a.m.