Bektas Downs Miyazaki In Henderson Open Singles Final

JF Blais, Emina Bektas, Lily Miyazaki, Ownen Hambrook (photo: Steve Pratt)

HENDERSON, October 11, 2021 (by Steve Pratt)

Former University of Michigan standout Emina Bektas captured the Henderson Tennis Open singles title, beating former Oklahoma Sooner Yuriko Lily Miyazaki of Japan, 6-1, 6-1, in just over one hour Sunday on the final day of the USTA Pro Circuit Women’s $60,000 event that took place at the Whitney Mesa Tennis Complex.

The No. 6-seeded Bektas, a native of Germany, continued her domination in the annual Las Vegas-area event as she dropped a total of just five games in both the singles semifinals and final. Later in the day, Bektas fell in the doubles final as she and Tara Moore of Great Britain, the No. 2 seeds, lost to Quinn Gleason and her Slovakian partner Tereza Mihalikova, the top seeds, in a hotly contested match with the former Notre Dame star Gleason and her first-time partner Mihalikova prevailing, 7-6 (5), 7-5.

“I think it’s the altitude,” Bektas told tournament director JF Blais in front of an appreciative crowd following her fourth USTA Pro Circuit singles title. “I had an amazing week here. It was so great finally being able to play in front of a crowd, so I just want to say thank you to everyone who came out today.”

The singles victory was the second largest of Bektas’ career and first since 2017 when the 28-year-old Bektas won at another high-altitude event, an $80,000 singles title in Albuquerque, N.M. Bektas is a 20-time doubles winner on the ITF/USTA Pro Circuit and played for the Wolverines from 2011 to 2015.

“This is my first $60,000 final and before this the best I had done was maybe second round,” said the London-based Miyazaki, who played four years at OU from 2015-18. “When I came and saw the draws I thought this was a great opportunity for me to do well.”

The 25-year-old Miyazaki added: “For me the college experience really prepared me to be a pro. There are many paths you can take, but I’d encourage anyone considering college tennis to definitely do it.”

Bektas next heads to Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., for another $60,000 USTA Pro Circuit event while Miyazaki will travel to Florence, S.C., for a $25K.

Sunday’s Final Singles Score:

Emina Bektas (6), US, def. Yuriko Lily Miyazaki, Japan, 6-1, 6-1

Sunday’s Final Doubles Score

Quinn Gleason, US/Tereza Mihalikova (2), Slovakia, def. Emina Bektas, US/Tara Moore (1), Great Britain, 7-6 (5), 7-5