STEFAN DOSTANIC DRAMATICALLY CLICHES RACE TO INDIAN WELLSPRO TENNIS | USTA SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA
QUALIFYING WILD CARD INTO BNP PARIBAS OPEN
QUALIFYING WILD CARD INTO BNP PARIBAS OPEN
JULY 16, 2023 | KARA LEE
STEFAN DOSTANIC DRAMATICALLY CLICHES RACE TO INDIAN WELLS QUALIFYING WILD CARD INTO BNP PARIBAS OPENUSTA SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA
JULY 16, 2023
Top: Irvine’s Stefan Dostanic during the SoCal Pro Series men’s singles final at Lakewood Tennis Center; Bottom: Dostanic with San Diego’s Haley Giavara, winners of the SoCal Pro Series Race to Indian Wells.
(Photos – Jon Mulvey/USTA SoCal)
SHARE THIS STORY
USC’s top player Stefan Dostanic saved his best tennis for last as the Irvine 21-year-old won his first ITF World Tour pro singles title Sunday coming back to beat Andre Ilagan in a dramatic three-set finish, 6-7 (1), 6-2, 7-5, and capture the Race to Indian Wells title as the leading men’s standings winner after seven consecutive weeks of SoCal Pro Series play.
The win for the Pac-12 Player of the Year Dostanic snapped a nine-match winning streak for the recent University of Hawaii graduate Ilagan, who came so close to repeating his Lakewood title from last week.
The No. 3-seeded Dostanic had to win on Sunday in order to win the coveted qualifying wild card into next March’s BNP Paribas Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden.
Dostanic said friends and family who came out to support him provided him an added boost when he needed it most. “In that third set when I was down 4-5, I was dead tired,” Dostanic said “That’s when my friends started making a lot of noise and it kind of felt like a college match. I really don’t think I would’ve won without them. My friends and family mean everything to me.”
Yesterday in the semifinals, Dostanic won an arduous three-set match against fellow Trojan, Learner Tien, who faltered after leading 5-2 in the third set. If Dostanic would have lost Sunday, Tien would have been the Race to Indian Wells winner.
“I won two really tough matches yesterday and today so that really boosted my confidence for when I’m caught in tight moments,” Dostanic said. “I’m so thrilled that USTA Southern California decided to give us the opportunity to play at Indian Wells and I couldn’t be more thankful.”
After dropping the tiebreaker in the exhilarating first set, Dostanic had to put his frustration aside. “I lost my focus and made a lot of errors in the first set,” Dostanic said. “I had to focus on making him play and not giving him free points.”
Unlike Dostanic, a loss did not affect the women’s Race to Indian Wells winner as San Diego’s Haley Giavara had already clinched the qualifying wild card heading into the match. Giavara fell to decorated University of North Carolina sophomore Reese Brantmeier, 6-4, 6-4. It was the first ITF World Tour pro title for the 18-year-old Brantmeier, who in May helped lead the Tar Heels to their first-ever NCAA team title.
Giavara raced out to a 3-0 lead in the first set, before Brantmeier was able to knot the score at 3-all before pulling away to take the first set.
“She [Giavara] came out playing very well from the start while I had a slow start and got down 0-3,” said third-seeded Brantmeier. “I then just really tried to dig into my physicality and that worked out in the end.”
Brantmeier continued: “The second set was super close until the end, so I knew I just had to be steady and wait for my one shot and I got it! This win is my first singles title, and it feels absolutely amazing.”
Brantmeier had no easy time getting to the finals as she had a challenging day in the semis on Saturday against UCLA’s Anne-Christine Lutkemeyer. After two close sets, Brantmeier closed out the match with a 7-6, 4-6, 6-1 win.
The following are the final Race to Indian Wells point standings:
Top 5 Final Men’s Standings:
1. Stefan Dostanic* – 47
2. Learner Tien – 41
T3. Omni Kumar – 37
T3. Jacob Brumm – 37
5. Keegan Smith – 25
Top 5 Final Women’s Standings:
1. Haley Giavara* – 63
2. Megan McCray – 38
3. Hanna Chang – 33
4. Katherine Hui – 20
5. Eryn Cayetano – 19
* Clinched Race to Indian Wells”qualifying wild card for 2024 BNP Paribas Open.
In doubles, Coronado’s Ryan Seggerman teamed with San Diego’s Patrik Trhac to win their second consecutive SoCal Pro Series title as they beat future Ohio State teammates Jack Anthrop and Bryce Nakashima in Saturday’s doubles final, 7-5, 6-2. In the women’s doubles final, Pepperdine’s Savannah Broadus and Anita Sahdiieva took out NCAA Doubles champion Fiona Crawley and Brantmeier, 6-3, 6-3.