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Juncheng Shang, Liv Hovde Win Adidas Easter Bowl Boys’ and Girls’ 18s Titles

Photo credit: Barnes Tennis Center Facebook

Top young juniors Juncheng “Jerry” Shang (16, Bradenton, Fla.) and Liv Hovde (15, McKinney, Texas) won the adidas Easter Bowl Boys’ and Girls’ 18s singles titles on Sunday. 

The Easter Bowl, which serves as the USTA National Spring Championships, was played last week at the Barnes Tennis Center in San Diego, with singles and doubles competition across the 18s, 16s, 14s and 12s age groups. The Easter Bowl is the first of five junior USTA National Championship events in 2021 – the USTA adidas Junior Championship Series – and counts John McEnroe, Tracy Austin, Jennifer Capriati and Andy Roddick among its previous champions.

Shang, the top seed in the boys’ 18s draw, came to San Diego fresh off competing in qualifying at the Miami Open. The IMG Academy product won the boys’ 14s title in 2019 and is currently ranked No. 4 in the ITF junior rankings. His final opponent was unseeded Ethan Quinn (17, Fresno, Calf.), who entered the championship match on an 11-match winning streak after taking home the title at the International Open of Southern California, an ITF Grade 1 event, held the week prior also in San Diego. Shang dropped the first set in a tiebreaker before dominating the final two sets to earn a 6-7(5), 6-1, 6-2 victory. Shang and partner Jack Anthrop (17, Orlando, Fla.) also reached the doubles final as the top-seeded team, where they fell to the fourth-seeded pair of Braden Shick (17, Greensboro, N.C.) and Colton Smith (18, Tenino, Wash.).

Hovde knocked off the tournament’s No. 1 and No. 4 seeds en route to an unlikely appearance in the final as a qualifier, where she faced the No. 3 seed Elvina Kalieva (17, Staten Island, N.Y.). After dropping the first set to Kalieva, who is ranked No. 21 in the world in the ITF junior rankings, Hovde rallied for a 4-6, 7-5, 6-1 win, taking home a USTA Gold Ball and winning a title in just her fifth ITF-level event. In the girls’ 18s doubles draw, the No. 2 seeds Qavia Lopez (15, Delray Beach, Fla.) and Valencia Xu (17, Livingston, N.J.) needed a match tiebreak to defeat the sixth-seeded pair of Sarah Hamner (18, Boca Raton, Fla.) and Ashlyn Krueger (16, Highland Village, Texas).

Alexander Razeghi (Humble, Texas) dropped only one set the entire tournament en route to securing the boys’ 16s singles title, capping off an impressive spring that has seen the 14-year-old capture two ITF titles. Razeghi defeated Learner Tien (Irvine, Calif.) 7-5, 6-1, in the final.

Theadora Rabman (Port Washington, N.Y.) knocked off the girls’ 16s No. 1 seed in the semifinals before defeating No. 4 seed Tatum Evans (McLean, Va.) 6-2, 6-1 in the final. Evans, also a girls’ 16s singles finalist at the 2020 Orange Bowl, partnered with Natalie Block (Plantation, Fla.) to win the doubles title.

Cooper Woestendick (Olathe, Kan.) defeated Jimin Jung (Cary, N.C.) to win the boys’ 14s singles title, while also reaching the doubles final. Meanwhile, Iva Jovic (Torrance, Calif.) secured the girls’ 14s singles title with a win over Elena Zhao (San Diego).

Sebastian Bielen (East Norwich, N.Y.) and Shannon Lam (Highland Park, N.J.) won the boys’ and girls’ 12s singles titles, respectively.

Finals results of the Easter Bowl can be found on page 2. The complete draws are available here: Boys’ & Girls’ 18sBoys’ & Girls’ 12s, 14s, & 16s.

Each year, more than 120,000 players compete in USTA junior tournament.