Party Rock Open Wild Cards Announced

LAS VEGAS (Sept. 19, 2012) – Las Vegas’ Asia Muhammad and US Open Junior Girls winner Samantha Crawford have been awarded main draw singles wild cards into the Party Rock Open, a women’s $50,000 USTA Pro Circuit tournament taking place at the Darling Tennis Center Sept. 23-30.

 

Muhammad is fresh off competing in the finals of the World Team Tennis Championships.  The 21-year-old, who turned pro as a teenager in 2007, will look to make a splash in her hometown event after reaching the quarterfinals in 2009.

 

Just last month Crawford, 17, reeled off six straight matches to capture the US Open Junior Girls’ title as a USTA wild card.  Crawford is from Atlanta and trains full-time at the USTA’s National Training Center in Boca Raton, Fla.

 

Other main draw wild card recipients include 2010 NCAA champion Chelsey Gullickson, and Allie Will, a 21-year-old who led the Florida Gators to back-to-back NCAA team titles in 2011 and 2012.

 

Gullickson is from Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., and is the daughter of former major league baseball pitcher Bill Gullickson.

 

Qualifying wild cards went to teenagers Chalena Scholl (U.S.), Ayaka Okuno (Japan), and Las Vegas’ Kimberly Yee, the No. 1 16-year-old in the country.  Sanaz Marand (U.S.) and 24-year-old Toni Kinard (U.S.) round out the qualifying wild cards with one to be determined.

 

In doubles the USTA will be awarding a main draw wild card to be announced on Monday, and tournament organizers have selected Roxanne and Sierra Ellison, the stalwart sisters who graduated from San Diego State University and turned pro this year.

 

Italy’s Romina Oprandi, currently ranked No. 59 in the WTA world rankings, captured the Las Vegas title in 2011, while top 25 player and U.S. Olympian Varvara Lepchenko was the 2010 champion.

 

The tournament’s official website is www.partyrockopen.com. To learn more about Redfoo and Party Rock Clothing, go to www.partyrockclothing.com.

 

The Party Rock Open is presented by Nevada Orthopedic & Spine Center, Las Vegas’ premier orthopedics group. Other sponsors include: USTA-Nevada, CourtThink, LLC, Agent Atleta, Ltd., WG Communications Group, Cox Communications, ESPN 1110 AM, The Point 97.1, 98.5 KLUC, Marty Hennessey Foundation, Solinco strings, Western Cab Company, Marquis Aurbach and Coffing, www.10sBalls.com, Asics, and Perrier water.

 

Follow along on Twitter @partyrockopen and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/partyrockopen.com.

 

Tournament Co-Directors:                    Tyler Weekes  tyler@CourtThink.com

Jordan J. Butler, Esq. jordan@agentatleta.com 

 

Tournament Press Contact:                  Steve Pratt  310.408.4555, Sprattt@aol.com

 

Tournament Marketing/Sponsorship:   Terri Weisbord  702.806.9760 terriwgcommgroup@aol.com

 

USTA Pro Circuit

With approximately 90 tournaments hosted annually throughout the country and prize money ranging from $10,000 to $100,000, the USTA Pro Circuit is the pathway to the US Open and tour-level competition for aspiring tennis players and a frequent battleground for established professionals. The USTA launched its Pro Circuit 33 years ago to provide players with the opportunity to gain professional ranking points, and it has since grown to become the largest developmental tennis circuit in the world, offering nearly $3 million in prize money. Last year, more than 1,000 men and women from more than 70 countries competed in cities nationwide. Mardy Fish, Maria Sharapova, Andy Roddick, Caroline Wozniacki, John Isner, Victoria Azarenka and Andy Murray are among today’s top stars who began their careers on the USTA Pro Circuit.

The Koz with Samantha Crawford

Seventeen year old Samantha Crawford of Atlanta, GA captured the 2012 US Open Girls’ Junior Championship with a 7-5, 6-3 victory over No. 12 seed Anett Kontaveit of Estonia.

Crawford, who currently trains at the USTA National Training Center in Boca Raton, Fla., is the second consecutive American to win the US Open Junior Girls’ title, and the third in the past five years.

The Georgia resident has played in two USTA Pro Circuit $50,000 events in 2012, reaching a final and a semifinal.  Dave “KOZ” Kozlowski spoke with the new US Open Junior Girls Champion.

 

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Samantha Crawford Wins Girls Junior Championship

FLUSHING, N.Y., September 9, 2012 – The United States Tennis Association (USTA) today announced that American Samantha Crawford of Atlanta, Ga., captured the 2012 US Open Girls’ Junior Championship with a 7-5, 6-3 victory over No. 12 seed Anett Kontaveit of Estonia at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on Sunday. Crawford, who currently trains at the USTA National Training Center in Boca Raton, Fla., is the second consecutive American to win the US Open Junior Girls’ title, and the third in the past five years.

“We are extremely proud of Sam and the total team effort of her family, coach Kathy Rinaldi and the entire USTA Player Development team Boca Raton,” said USTA General Manager, Player Development Patrick McEnroe.

Crawford follows Grace Min, in 2011, and CoCo Vandeweghe, in 2008, as Americans to win US Open Junior titles in the last five years. Crawford’s victory also completes an American sweep of the 2012 US Open Junior Girls’ titles after Taylor Townsend, of Jonesboro, Ga., and Gabrielle Andrews, of Pomona, Calif., won the doubles championship on Saturday.

Crawford, a 17-year-old wild card in the 2012 US Open Junior Championship, defeated five of the Top 12 seeds to win her first major girls’ singles title and cap an impressive summer. Crawford, as a wild card, qualified for the US Open singles main draw and took Great Britain’s Laura Robson to a second-set tiebreak in the first round. She also played in the US Open women’s doubles and mixed doubles main draws, earning a wild card entry into the former after winning the USTA Girls’ 18s Nationals doubles title with partner Allie Kiick, of Plantation, Fla.

Crawford was playing in just her fifth ITF world junior circuit event of the year. Prior to the US Open, she played in two USTA Pro Circuit $50,000 events in 2012, reaching the final in Yakima, Wash., and the semifinal in Sacramento.