Oct. 19, 2011
ATLANTA – Five Georgia Tech competitors are entered in a strong field from the states of Georgia and Florida that will begin competition Thursday in the USTA/ITA Southeast Regional tennis championships at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex in Athens, Ga.
It will be the second of three ventures to Athens this fall for the Yellow Jackets, who are sending Juan Spir, Kevin King, Juan Melian Puigventos, Dusan Miljevic and Eduardo Segura Mandarino to play in the event. There will be two qualifying rounds of singles on Thursday starting at 9 a.m., and the singles and doubles main draws begin Friday at 9 a.m. Finals in both draws at set for 10 a.m. Monday.
Finalists in singles and the champion in doubles will advance to the ITA National Championships the first weekend in November at the National Tennis Center, site of the U.S. Open, in Flushing, N.Y.
Spir, a junior from Medellin, Colombia, is ranked 34th nationally, while King, a senior from Peachtree City, Ga., is No. 85 and Melian Puigventos, a junior from Las Palmas, Spain, is No. 97. Tech has two doubles teams entered, King and Miljevic teaming together, while Melian and Segura will compete.
“We have had an opportunity this fall to play some of the best competition in the nation and this weekend will be another good test,” said Tech coach Kenny Thorne. “Our regional tournament will have all the best college players in the state of Georgia and Florida competing for coveted two region spots in singles and one region spot in doubles in the national indoors. Patrick McEnroe is hosting the event in November and this weekend is the qualifier for that event. The U.S. Open site is a good incentive for everyone in the tournament this weekend. Win and go to the U.S. Open or lose and go home. I love it.”
Spir (1-3) is the second seed and will face Florida State’s Anderson Reed in the first round of the main draw Friday. King, the sixth seed with a 6-2 record, faces Dean Thomas of Florida Gulf Coast. Miljevic, a senior with a 2-2 record, Melian Puigventos (3-2), and the freshman Segura Mandarino (4-3) are set to face players who advance from the qualifying draw.
On the doubles side, Melian and Segura will take on Matthjis Verdam and Oliver Webb from Georgia Southern in the first round. King and Miljevic, who went 1-1 in the Southern Intercollegiate Championships in Athens in September, have a first-round bye and will face Francesc Aulina and Mario Samson of Central Florida in Friday’s second round.