CARY, September 16, 2016
Stefan Kozlov tallied two wins on Thursday to advance to the Atlantic Tire Championships singles quarterfinals and doubles semi-finals. The $50,000 ATP Challenger, a USTA Pro Circuit event, is being held at Cary Tennis Park through Sunday, September 18. Kozlov, who has already won two USTA Pro Circuit singles titles this year, defeated Philip Bester 6-4, 6-1 in one hour and 13 minutes. Fourth seed Kozlov will face Ernesto Escobedo in the stage of the final eight on Friday.
Ernesto Escobedo, who made his Grand Slam debut at the 2016 US Open, advanced to the quarterfinals with a three set win over fellow US-American Ryan Shane. Ernesto dropped the second set, but quickly recovered to take the final set in a 6-3, 5-7, 6-1 win after one hour and 43 minutes.
James McGee eased past Darian King, winning 6-1, 6-3. The qualifier from Ireland converted six of his nine break points to advance in one hour and 22 minutes. McGee will next take on Candian wild card Brayden Schnur, who downed Eric Quigley 7-6, 6-1. The 21-year-old from Pickering didn’t lose his serve, breaking his opponent twice to prevail in 78 minutes.
In an all-US-American doubles match, Stefan Kozlov and Austin Krajicek defeated the tournament’s third seed team of Sekou Bangoura and Mitchell Krueger with a 6-3, 7-5 victory. Kozlov and Krajicek will face Luke Bambridge and Ben McLachlan in Friday’s semifinal match.
Friday’s featured singles quarterfinals match is a match up between second seed Frances Tiafoe and Tennys Sandgren. This will be their third meeting. They last played each other in the 2015 Tallahasse Challenger semifinals.