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Mylan WTT: 72 Hours (7/17-7/19)

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Taylor Townsend hopes to prevent the Washington Kastles from winning their first home match of the season. (AP Photo)

Mylan World TeamTennis celebrates its 40th birthday this year. For more on WTT, including this season's schedule, click here.


YESTERDAY (July 17)

Washington Kastles d. PHILADELPHIA FREEDOMS 21-20
After splitting the first four sets, the battle between four-time defending champions and one of Mylan World TeamTennis’ original teams came down to a one-set shootout in men’s singles. Taylor Townsend and Marcelo Melo came out firing in mixed doubles, ousting Leander Paes and Anastasia Rodionova before Madison Brengle came out to restore order for the Kastles in women’s singles. When Townsend won a second set in women’s doubles with Asia Mihammad, it was up to former US Open semifinalist Robby Ginepri to lay down the hammer and inflict a second straight loss on the Kastles. Denis Kudla initially struggled to adjust to Mylan WTT’s fast-paced format, while Ginepri has the second best men’s singles winning percentage in the league. The Americans went toe-to-toe for eight games before the rising Kudla edged Ginepri in a tiebreak to clinch the match. Washington returns to first place in the East, though tied with the Boston Lobsters.

SPRINGFIELD LASERS d. San Diego Aviators 22-19
The 2013 and 2014 Mylan WTT finalists earned their first win in 2015; though the home team lost two of the first three sets, Springfield led overall at halftime, and established an even firmer lead after Sachia Vickery beat Chani Scheepers in women’s singles. The match came down to a sudden death point in the mixed doubles tiebreak, but big-hitting Germans Andre Begemann and Anna-Lena Groenefeld were too tough in the end. San Diego continues in second place, while Springfield may finally be hitting their stride.

Austin Aces d. CALIFORNIA DREAM 22-16
The sequel might not have matched the original in terms of wild momentum shifts, but the Austin Aces continued to impress as they took a second straight win over the California Dream, maintaining their unbeaten record in 2015. California came out firing in men’s doubles, but Alla Kudryavtseva and Nicole Gibbs got their revenge on Anabel Medina Garrigues and Jarka Gajdosova in women’s doubles. Kudryavtseva and Gabashvili continued their winning ways in mixed doubles, but the biggest surprise came in the final set, when Gibbs turned the tables on the powerful Aussie in women’s singles. Looking to trigger Extended Play, Gajdosova looked to have the momentum when recovering from 4-2 to force a tiebreak. In another sudden death, however, the five-time Stanford All-American held up under the pressure to clinch victory for the Aces.

TODAY (July 18)

Philadelphia Freedoms @ Washington Kastles 5PM EDT
The Freedoms gave the Kastles all they could handle on Friday night; can Washington win their first home match of the season? Denis Kudla proved particularly clutch yesterday, winning both of his sets, while Taylor Townsend held up her end of the bargain by taking two of her own in mixed and women’s doubles. Who comes out on top at the Smith Center?

Springfield Lasers @ Austin Aces 8PM EDT
The top and bottom Western Conference teams face of at Austin’s home stadium, and if Thursday’s encounter with the California Dream was any indication, this one will be one to watch. Plenty of cheering, exhorting, and devoted crowd support should all be on the menu as the Russian/American rookies take on the two-time Mylan WTT finalists, who should be feeling confident after earning their first win of the season.

Boston Lobsters @ California Dream 10:30PM EDT
Boston has caught fire in the first week; will their flame keep burning as they head west to face the California Dream? The match-up between Irina Falconi and Jarka Gajdosova will be an intriguing affair, as will the doubles match-up between Scott Lipsky and Neal Skupski. Can the Lobsters hold onto their lead?

TOMORROW (July 19)

Boston Lobsters @ San Diego Aviators 9PM EDT
Two teams to watch in 2015 face off for the second time this season, and the Aviators will be looking for revenge after losing to the Lobsters 25-13 at the Manchester Athletic Club. Will young Taylor Fritz continue to impress in men’s singles? Can the Lobsters hold on to first place in the Eastern Conference?

Springfield Lasers @ Philadelphia Freedoms 7PM EDT
The Lasers continue their road trip out east to face the Philadelphia Freedoms. With a win under their belt, how will that affect the former Mylan WTT finalists against 2014 Eastern Conference runner-ups? Can Begemann and Groenefeld continue their winning ways in mixed doubles?

California Dream @ Austin Aces 8PM EDT
The exciting trilogy between the Dream and the Aces comes to its exciting conclusion on Sunday; can California nab a win over the as-yet undefeated Aces? How will the crowd impact what promises to be a raucous affair at the Gregory Gymnasium?


 

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