Seeded players soldier on in Coconut Classic


Seung Won Lee makes a baseline return to Jun Wang during their boys U12 singles game in the 2017 White Coconut Tennis Classic last Saturday at the Pacific Islands Club courts. (Roselyn B. Monroyo)

Top-ranked Sean Lee stayed on course for his second straight boys U14 singles division title after marching into the finals of the 2017 White Coconut Tennis Classic.

Lee, who pulled off an upset over Ji Min Woo, 6-4, 6-2, in the finals of the 8th Annual TanHoldings Tennis Classic last year, moved a win away from clinching his second championship in the same age group following a 6-0, 6-1 semis win over Andy Kim yesterday at the Pacific Islands Club courts. Kim made it to the semis after eliminating Rintaro MIyawaki at the upper half of the draw, 6-0, 6-2.

At the lower half of the draw, Eugene Park notched twin wins over the weekend to set up a finals duel against Lee. Park first ousted Hyunmin Cho last Saturday, 6-0, 6-1, and then stunned No. 2 seed Sam Ryu in the semis yesterday, 6-2, 6-4.

Meanwhile, in the boys U12 singles, which drew the most participants (16), all four seeded players are in the quarterfinals.

No. 4 Seung Won Lee earned a Round of 8 slot after sweeping Jun Wang last Saturday, 6-1, 6-2, while Anthony Gregoire got a free ride to the next round following his walkover triumph over Min Gi Jung. The Top 2 seeds in the draw—Daniel Kang and Richard Steele—drew byes in the opening week of the tournament and automatically moved into the quarterfinals.

Jaeyung Jung, Andrew Chung, David Kwon, and Jiwoong Kwon completed the Round of 8 cast. Jiwoong won over Danny Jeong, 6-1, 6-0; Chung escaped with a 6-4, 4-6, 10-8 victory over Danny Lee; Jung also pulled off a super-tiebreaker win over Eubin Park, 5-7, 7-5, 11-9; and Seung Won outclassed Jun Wang, 6-1, 6-2.

In the boys U16 singles, the eight-player field is down to 4 as the completion of Week 1 matches. Top-ranked Ken Song shut down Allan Lee, 6-0, 6-0, to set a semis duel against Steven Goodwin, who ousted Ken Xue, 6-0, 6-1. In the other Final Four pairing, it will be the No. 2 seed Vincent Tudela against Tony Kim following their 6-0, 6-0 and 6-1, 6-0 victories over Andy Cho and Jeffrey Seo, respectively.

In the men’s open singles, only four players are also left standing. No. 2 seed Jeff Race is among them after eking out a 5-7, 7-5, 13-11 win over Song last weekend. Moris Villanueva is also in the semis following his 6-3, 6-3 victory against Colin Ramsey. Tony Kim and Bobby Cruz rounded out the Final Four cast as the former got a free win against Dong Min Lee (walkover) and the latter drew a bye in the opening week.

Roselyn Monroyo | Reporter
Roselyn Monroyo is the sports reporter of Saipan Tribune. She has been covering sports competitions for more than two decades. She is a basketball fan and learned to write baseball and football stories when she came to Saipan in 2005.

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