Thursday, September 9, 2010

King's last stand a big one

The run of Big Ten players at the U.S. Open is over today, but it ended in quite a dramatic fashion.  In front of a television audience, the University of Michigan’s Evan King dropped from the boys singles draw in the junior championships.

Playing on Louie Armstrong Stadium was far from intimidating to the sophomore, “I loved it.  When I saw the schedule, I was pumped up.  One, we had a radar gun.  Two, we had the challenge system – which I probably used a little bit too much.”  Even though both players were unaware until the end that they were being televised live on The Tennis Channel (with commentary from Tracy Austin and Jimmy Connors).

The match proceeded through the first set without a break in serve.  King came back from down 4-1 in the breaker to take the set at 7/5.  The match continued at a nearly even pace with some great points and long games. Denis Kudla took an early break in the second match, but King got it back for 3-3.  He didn’t take advantage of the break opportunities at 4-3 and ended up giving up another one for 6-5 and then losing the set at 7-5.

Set three was highlighted by some powerful, crowd-pleasing winners by the Wolverine, but there were also a number of errors.  Denis Kudla took it at 6-4.   After the match, University of Michigan Coach Bruce Berque, who watched the match with King’s junior tennis coach Mark Bey, had mixed feelings.  “I’m proud of him because he’s moving in the right direction with his game, but he needs to become a little more consistent and not detour from the game plan.”

Evan King is on his way back to Ann Arbor.  The conference’s 2009 Freshman of the Year is looking away from junior tennis and forward to the Big Ten season ahead.
Bookmark and Share


Post a Comment