Amanda Fink Shines In ITF Summer Tourneys|
July 21, 2008
Fresh off a strong junior season at USC, Amanda Fink has notched a powerful summer for herself playing as an amateur in several distinguished International Tennis Federation Women's Circuit tournaments across the country. A wildcard into the main draw in Allentown, Pa., Fink reached the final of that tournament before recently capturing the title at competition in Atlanta.
As Fink enters her senior season at Troy, the talented lefty has accumulated a 102-34 career singles record and finished the 2008 season ranked No. 5 nationally. She was named a member of the USTA Summer Collegiate Tour, enabling her to participate in a number of professional tournaments this summer.
"It's really good practice over the summer," Fink said of the Collegiate Tour, in which she also took part last year. "It not only helps in your college game, the college experience also helped me prepare for this, and helped me to grind it out playing with these tough players on the tour."
This summer, Fink has competed in three tournaments, beginning with a $50,000 tourney in Boston, where she won three rounds in qualifying before falling in the first round of the main draw. She has a couple more on tap, first in Missouri and later in Ohio.
In Allentown, Pa., another $50,000 tourney, Fink was a wildcard in the main draw and advanced to her first-ever final. Unranked, Fink beat four players ranked No. 315 or better: No. 315 Carly Gullickson, No. 137 Varvara Lepchenko, No. 284 Brenda Schultz-McCarthy and No. 256 Lauren Albanese. Fink took down Albanese with relative ease in the semifinal, winning 6-3, 6-4 to move into the final against Venezuela's Milagros Sequera, to whom she lost 6-2, 6-0.
"I was so nervous doing this last year I think I barely won a match," Fink said. "I've never been in a professional final, so there were nerves there. It was a whole different feeling of accomplishment for getting there but you still want to win.I thoroughly enjoy being the underdog, I thrive on it."
One week later, Fink headed to Atlanta, Ga., for a $10,000 tournament, breezing to the title in straight sets. On the way, Fink faced former Baylor star Zuzana Zemenova in the quarterfinals, and the Trojan posted a 6-2, 6-3 with over her past collegiate opponent. In the final, Fink pounded out a 6-3, 6-2 win over Bulgaria's Svetlana Krivencheva to claim the championship win.
"I was actually so tired I wasn't expecting to do very much damage, but I managed to get through OK," Fink said.
Fink is not the only Trojan to reign supreme in summer tourneys, however. Sophomore-to-be Maria Sanchez also worked into a final and claimed a tournament title of her own this wee. Earlier this summer, Sanchez made a deep run at the Women's Open Southern California Sectionals. Playing for a wildcard entry into this week's prestigious East West Bank Classic in Carson, Calif., Sanchez came up against former Trojan Dianne Matias in the quarterfinals. Sanchez won three matches in straight sets before falling in three to Katsiaryna Zheltova in the final.
At a recent tournament in Aptos, Calif., the young Trojan won the title of the Comerica Challenger, topping defending champ Page Bartelt in the final to notch another strong tournament finish for the Women of Troy. Sanchez posted a 27-11 singles record in her freshman season at Troy, ranking No. 96 in the nation.