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Smith, Williams Earn At-Large Bids to USTA/ITA National Indoors
John-Patrick Smith


John-Patrick Smith

Oct. 29, 2010

Tennessee senior John-Patrick Smith and sophomore Rhyne Williams have received at-large bids for the USTA/ITA National Intercollegiate Indoor Championships next week in Flushing, N.Y.

Smith has reached the elite 32-player field three times in his career and is seeded fifth in the tournament. Williams is making his first singles appearance.

The National Indoors runs Nov. 4-7 and will be played at the USTA Billie Jean King Tennis Center, the annual site of the US Open.

Both Vols qualified for at-large invitations based on their national ranking and finish at the USTA/ITA Ohio Valley Regional Championships last week. Smith, ranked No. 1 by the ITA, strung together five victories to reach the championship match, where he lost to eighth-ranked Eric Quigley of host Kentucky. Williams, No. 21 nationally, upset 10th-ranked Austen Childs to reach the semifinals.

The National Indoors selection process states that all at-large selections must at least reach the quarterfinals of their respective regional tournaments.

Last season, Smith qualified automatically for the National Indoors by winning the ITA All-American Championships. He reached the semifinals before losing a close three-set match to Southern California's Steve Johnson.

Although Williams is appearing in singles for the first time at the National Indoors, he was a doubles semifinalist at the event with senior Boris Conkic last year.

A live blog of UT's matches at the National Indoors will be available at UTSports.com.

To Note: With his five wins at last week's regional tournament, Smith has 120 career singles victories, tying him with Mark Parsons (1997-2001) for fourth on Tennessee's all-time list. Shelby Cannon (1985-88) is third with 140 wins ... Williams is also on the verge of a career milestone. He enters the National Indoors with 49 career singles victories. He had 41 as a freshman.

 

 

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