NMASA/TSL Foundation 2012 Female Student Athlete of the Year Mikayla Lopez earned her first U18 singles championship after ruling the round-robin tournament in the 2013 White Coconut Tennis Classic.
Lopez was undefeated in the girls U18 singles of the White Coconut Classic, completing the sweep and the title win with her 8-2 triumph over Negahr Rastguiy yesterday at the American Memorial Park tennis courts. The victory came a few days after the Marianas High School student, who lost to Thea Minor in her U18 competition debut in November last year, was named the CNMI's top female student for 2012 during the NMASA Annual Sports Banquet.
Besides Rastguiy, Lopez also prevailed over Melody Johnson and Alina Ishikawa in the round-robin U18 singles event. Rastguiy settled for the runner-up honors with her 2-1 record, while Johnson finished third.
Joining Lopez in the champions circle were Carol Lee, Malika Miyawaki, Jireh Warren, Thea Minor, Dylan Ackerman, and Vincent Tudela.
Lee also recorded a first when she defeated Isabel Heras in the girls U15 finale yesterday, 8-5. Lee bowed to Negahr in the U15 finals of the Tan Holdings Classic in November last year. Emily Jones rounded out the Top 3 after dominating Liza Atalig in the consolation game, 8-2.
In the U12 title match, Miyawaki downed Tania Tan, 8-5, for the former's first win in her new age group after advancing only in the semifinals in her debut in the higher division late last year. Grace Choi joined Miyawaki and Tan in the Top 3 after prevailing over U12 newcomer Asia Raulerson, 8-4.
In the round-robin girls U10, Warren was flawless in three games to clinch the championship against Ellie Epley (2-1), Erika Tuttle (1-2), and Maria Gregoire (0-3).
In the boys U18, Minor, the only female player in the field, handed Amami Sakano another runner-up finish after prevailing in their title game yesterday, 8-3. Sakano also fell to Christian Miller, 4-8, in last year's White Coconut Classic. Event top seed Rafael Jones settled for third place this year after surviving Tommy Choi in the consolation match, 9-8 (7-4).
In the boys U15, Ackerman made it two in a row against Michael Ren after cruising to an 8-2 triumph yesterday. Ackerman and Ren also met in the Tan Holdings finale with the former winning, 6-2, 6-2. Moris Villanueva joined Ren and Ackerman in the Top 3, following his 8-3 victory over Colin Ramsey.
In the U12 division, Tudela claimed his first championship in his new age group after defeating Joshua Abragan, 8-2, while the winner of the boys U10 crown has yet to be decided at press time, as the Aditya Rai-Gang Min Kim finale yesterday morning was rained-out.