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  • Writer's pictureMichael Augsberger

Hoang, Johnson, Hilliard spark rankings upheaval


Oct 22: 16U UTR - Yann Auzoux Open

Austin Johnson won his second title in as many attempts dating back to September 17 at the USTA 10U Green & Orange last weekend. Meanwhile Beckham Hoang extended his dominance in the UTR Yann Auzoux Open 16U tournament, another two tournaments entered, two tournaments won.

But the biggest story is that we have a new No. 1 at the 16U level, Atlee Hilliard. Despite going out in the semifinals in a classic tiebreak match, her performance lifted her thirty-three points ahead of Jon Ozenci for the top spot in the rankings.

Hoang's record goes back to July 29 at the Central College Placement Classic 15U, playing Akaash Sachdeva in that final. This time he met William Van Horne, who produced the comeback of the weekend to get there. Hoang took the final 4-0, 4-2 to claim the championship.

Johnson's path in the Orange event yielded a fine showdown with Mason Woodard in which the former won in the closest way possible, 4-3, for one of the matches of the weekend.

Vincent Finisdore jumped just ahead of Johnson in the rankings having won as many championships at 10U but also adding a third place finish. He too won his group at the USTA event after defeating Miles Lam 4-1 in the day's final match, when both entered the contest undefeated at 3-0.

Finisdore sits at 12th on the 10U tour, while Johnson hops to 14th in the most impressive climb of the weekend, save for perhaps Amy Kikanzira. She won her 10U group by two full games, no mean feat, and entered the Top 25 after a whopping 106-place longjump.

New players broke into the Top 10 with the 16U Tour producing some chaotic movement. Carter Mills, who just snuck past Spencer Weiss in a 5-3 second set quarterfinal before going out 4-1, 4-2 to Hoang, joined the Top 10 after his final performance. He's the new No. 2 at 14U as well.

Champion Hoang landed just outside at No. 11, while finalist Van Horne gained nine spots to No. 13. It was Van Horne's semifinal against overall 16U and 18U No. 1 Atlee Hilliard that turned the most heads. Dropping the first set 4-0, he made the necessary changes to grab the second set 4-2 before winning the tense tiebreak 10-6. He also broke into the 14U and 18U Top 10 with the win.

Shannon Bu crept into the Top 10 at 10U finishing second in her group this weekend, and gaining one spot each were Likitha Gaddipati and Lara Dabney (rampant in her 12-1 game record and division championship) thanks to their tournament performances, and Archer Pollak with others dropping points.

Two classic league matches took place this weekend as well. Annie Lippard earned Player of the Week honors with her 7-5 victory over Alexander Yu, no stranger to success on the tournament tours. Afterward, he set aside the disappointment to come back and win his own dramatic match, 8-6 against Jake Snow.

2024 Points Change

A change to the points applied to higher-level tournaments from lower levels should reflect ages and skills better from now on. It used to be that all points were halved when applied to a higher age group's rankings. Now, the points are halved each step up the ladder, not just once.

So a player can no longer earn 80 points at 10U and count them as 40 at 16U. They would be halved at 12U (40 points), again at 14U (20 points), then again at 16U (10 points). It provides the incentive without disrupting the older players' earnings too much.

However, a younger player earning points in an older tournament, much as Arnav Nadikatla did in this Tour Championship edition, is still a sure way to rise faster in those rankings.

Remember the newly added feature to the rankings: the Plus / Minus, which will tell you how far up or down the player has moved within the last week.


10U Green: William Hedrick, Brooke Dorsey, Lara Dabney, Vincent Finisdore, Amy Kikanzira

10U Orange: Austin Johnson, Miya Li

16U UTR: Beckham Hoang

The full tables now look like this.

Each weekend this spring and summer, Tennis Central is bringing you USTA and UTR tournaments at Holton-Arms School. Earn points for advancing through each round, just like on the pro tours, and qualify for the TOUR CHAMPIONSHIP at season's end.

Bigger events offer more points, with the TOUR CHAMPIONSHIP offering the most, as well as prizes.

Check here for updates each week to the Tennis Central Tour Rankings, a 52-week points system based on the pro tours, as well as recaps of all the action and photos.




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