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Sandgren, Williams Rejoin USTA Team
Rhyne Williams

Rhyne Williams

June 27, 2011

For the second year in a row, Tennessee natives Tennys Sandgren and Rhyne Williams were selected to the USTA Collegiate Team, the national tennis governing body announced Monday.

Sandgren and Williams, both coming off All-American sophomore seasons for the Vols, joined 11 other top American collegiate players on the summer team. The group participated in a USTA pro tour transition camp earlier this month in Boca Raton, Fla., and will compete in multiple USTA Futures circuit events over the next two months.

The Vol duo played in their tournament as part of the program last week at the MIMA Foundation Pro Tennis Classic in Indian Harbour Beach, Fla. Sandgren reached the second round of the tournament while Williams lost in the opening round to eventual champion Jesse Levine, a former Florida Gator standout.

Last summer, Williams took full advantage of his opportunities on the summer circuit. He was a finalist in the Futures event in Pittsburgh - a tournament he won as a 16 year old - and compiled an 8-3 record over three tournaments. Thanks to that success, he climbed to a career-best No. 758 in the ATP world rankings.

Sandgren, from Gallatin, and Williams, from Knoxville, also teamed up to take the doubles title at the Pittsburgh Futures, which was the first professional doubles title for either player.

Smith Starts Pro Career
Four-time All-American John-Patrick Smith joined Sandgren and Williams last week for the USTA circuit stop in Indian Harbour Beach, Fla.

Smith had not played in a professional tournament besides the local Knoxville Challenger since 2007, so he entered the week with no ranking points. He had to play through four rounds of singles qualifying, winning each match in straight sets to reach the main draw.

He ousted second-seeded Dayne Kelly 6-1, 6-0 in the opening round and played his way into the quarterfinals before falling in three sets to American Ty Trombetta.

 

 

Vols Land Three on ITA All-Star Team
The ITA released its annual all-star team, and three Vols reached that exclusive list.

Williams was named to the team for the first time by virtue of hoisting the singles title at the USTA/ITA National Intercollegiate Indoor Championships in November. In his second season as a Vol, the Knoxville native won 42 matches, held the No. 1 ranking for two months and was a finalist in the NCAA Singles Championships.

Smith and doubles partner Boris Conkic finished the year with the No. 1 national doubles ranking and were named the ITA Doubles Team of the Year, thus qualifying them for the ITA All-Star Team. The Vol duo finished 22-2 at the top of the UT doubles lineup and held the top ranking from March 1 through the end of the season.

For Smith, this marks his second appearance on the all-star team. He and Davey Sandgren were named ITA Doubles Team of the Year in 2009 after reaching the finals of the NCAA Doubles Championships.

The ITA All-Star Team will be honored on Arthur Ashe Kids' Day on Aug. 27 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing, N.Y.

2011 USTA Collegiate Team
Sekou Bangoura, Florida
Chase Buchanan, Ohio State
Alex Domijan, Virginia
Steve Johnson, USC
Evan King, Michigan
Bradley Klahn, Stanford
Austin Krajicek, Texas A&M
Dennis Nevolo, Illinois
Eric Quigley, Kentucky
Tennys Sandgren, Tennessee
Ray Sarmiento, USC
Michael Shabaz, Virginia
Rhyne Williams, Tennessee

2011 ITA Collegiate All-Star Team
Division I Singles

Steve Johnson, Southern California
Rhyne Williams, Tennessee
Michael Shabaz, Virginia
Division I Doubles
Boris Conkic/John-Patrick Smith, Tennessee

Jeff Dadamo/Austin Krajicek, Texas A&M
Drew Courtney/Michael Shabaz, Virginia
Division II
Edualdo Bonet, Armstrong Atlantic
Division III
Chris Goodwin, Emory
NAIA
Xavier Smith, Fresno Pacific
Junior/Community Colleges
Alex Sarkissian, Glendale

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