Whoriskey Making A Run At Spot In US Open Tennis Field

Caitlin Whoriskey hits a backhand during the 2014 US Open National Playoffs women’s final match against Michaela Gordon at the Yale University Tennis Center in New Haven, Connecticut, on August 18.
COURTESY BILLIE WEISS/CONNECTICUT OPEN - Caitlin Whoriskey hits a backhand during the 2014 US Open National Playoffs women’s final match against Michaela Gordon at the Yale University Tennis Center in New Haven, Connecticut, on August 18.

East Sandwich’s Caitlin Whoriskey is two wins away from a spot in the United States Open field after she scored an upset over No. 5 seed, Danka Kovinic of Montenegro, on Thursday, August 21,  in the first round of the US Open Qualifying Tournament in Flushing, New York. Whoriskey defeated Kovinic, the No. 106th-ranked player in the world, in an epic 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 match. Whoriskey will face 18-year-old Australian Ashleigh Barty today, August 22, in the second round of US Open qualifying. Live scoring can be found on USOpen.org.

“It has been a little intimidating playing here,” Whoriskey said. “I am used to playing at parks and small clubs here and there. To have this many people and to have the magnitude of the whole US Open environment here has been a tad overwhelming, but it has been a lot of fun.

Many people were cheering for me today, so it has been really great. I am really happy.”

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“The whole match, I tried not to get too excited. I tried to be as calm as I could, but I will definitely celebrate later and continue to take it one match at a time.”

Whoriskey, 26, is a former University of Tennessee standout, who was a three-time All-American and was named the 2010 ITA National Senior Player of the Year after leading the Volunteers to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament for the first time in eight seasons. She also reached the final of the 2010 NCAA Doubles Championships with Natalie Pluskota. Whoriskey captured her first career USTA Pro Circuit singles title in May at the $10,000 event in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, where she also won the doubles crown. She has also captured seven USTA Pro Circuit and ITF-level doubles titles throughout the world. Whoriskey is ranked No. 526 in the world.

Whoriskey won the 2014 US Open National Playoffs women’s singles championships to earn a wild card into the US Open Qualifying Tournament. The playoffs were held last week in New Haven, Connecticut. Whoriskey is just the third US Open National Playoffs champion since 2010 to win a first-round, US Open qualifying match.

There were 1,088 players (723 men and 365 women) who competed in the fifth year of the US Open National Playoffs in singles, playing in one of 13 sectional qualifying tournaments held throughout the United States. Whoriskey won the USTA New England Sectional Qualifying Tournament earlier this summer to advance to the US Open National Playoffs – Women’s Championship.

At the national playoffs, the unseeded Whoriskey defeated 15-year-old Michaela Gordon of Saratoga, California, 2-6, 6-2, 6-1, to capture the 2014 US Open National Playoffs women’s title.

Whoriskey won the USTA New England Sectional Qualifying Tournament earlier this summer to advance to the US Open National Playoffs Women’s Championship.

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