Some of the state’s best junior tennis players prepared for the upcoming USTA national championships by representing the New England section at the prestigious National Team Championships.
Southern Connecticut Conference rivals Rich Ciamarra and Jason Seidman won their singles matches and teamed up for a doubles victory to lead New England to a 5-4 win over the Intermountain squad in the boys’ competition in Urbana, Illinois.
Ciamarra and Seidman, the No. 1 players at Xavier and Amity respectively, led the New England squad with 3-1 singles records. Ciamarra had the only win in New England’s 7-1 loss to the Midwest squad, while Seidman’s singles victory was New England’s only point in a 7-1 loss to Missouri Valley.
Ciamarra, Seidman and Hopkins star Peter Conklin each recorded singles victories as New England wrapped up the competition with a 5-3 win over Florida. Ciamarra and Seidman are entered in the 18-and-under singles draw, while Conklin will play in the 16-and-under competition at the USTA National Tennis Championships which begin in Friday in Kalamazoo, Michigan.
State products played in four of the first five singles positions, led by New Canaan’s Lexi Milunovich and Darien’s Caroline Dunleavy who posted wins in both singles and doubles in New England’s 7-2 win over the Middle States in the opening match for both teams in the girls’ event in Claremont, California.
New England swept the singles matches against the Mountain States including wins at No. 1 by Fairfield’s Ellyse Hamlin, No. 2 by Stamford’s Anna Rogers and victories by Milunovich and Dunleavy at No. 3 and 5 singles to lead New England to a 6-3 win.
Milunovich and Rogers teamed up for a win at No. 2 doubles to account for New England’s only win in an 8-1 loss to the Southern section, while Rogers posted wins in singles and doubles in a 5-4 loss to the Midwest section to wrap up the competition. Milunovich, Rogers and Dunleavy were the only New England players to finish with winning records between the singles and doubles matches. Hamlin and Dunleavy both earned No. 12 seeds for the upcoming national — Hamlin in the girls’ 18-and-under event and Dunleavy in the 16-and-under bracket. The tournament begins Saturday in San Diego.