July 26, 2009
MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- TCU women's tennis player Kayla Duncan finished her juniors career on a high note Sunday, winning the USTA National Clay Court Doubles Championship in Memphis, Tenn., alongside partner Allison Falkin.
""It's been an amazing summer," Duncan said. "My goal all along as been to win a gold ball. It feels amazing."
The duo stormed through the bracket, starting Sunday, July 19. After enjoying a bye through the opening round, the tandem sustained three-consecutive straight-set victories until defeating Robin Anderson and Jennifer Kellner in the quarterfinals, 5-7, 6-3, 6-1. After dismantling Kate Fuller and Britney Sanders, 6-4, 6-2 in the semifinals, the pairing prepared for the championship finale against Whitney Kay and Ellen Tsay.
Duncan and her partner jumped to a 3-1 lead in the first set, but stumbled to drop the opening frame, 6-4. Teetering on the edge of defeat, the duo found themselves down 4-1 in the second set, before rallying to take the stanza, 6-4. Riding their momentum, the pairing launched to a 5-1 advantage in the final set, clinching the championship, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3.
"I am really proud of Kayla," TCU head coach Jefferson Hammond said. "It's a major accomplishment in her final junior tournament and to go out a champion is amazing."
Duncan enjoyed success this summer, claiming the USTA National Opens doubles title and claiming the Sportsmanship Award at the USTA Southern Closed.
The 2009 All-Mountain West Conference singles and doubles selection led the Horned Frogs with a 17-6 singles record during the spring for a combined clip of 27-7 overall. Duncan tied Paty Alburto, Rene Simpson and Daria Zoldakova for the second-most wins in a single season by a freshman at TCU, falling one victory shy of Lucie Dvorakova's 28 win total in 1996.
USTA National Clay Court Championships
Memphis, Tenn. | Racquet Club of Memphis
F Duncan/Falkin def. Kay/Tsay, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3
SF Duncan/Falkin def. Fuller/Sanders, 6-4, 6-2
QF Duncan/Falkin def. Anderson/Kellner, 5-7, 6-3, 6-1
R16 Duncan/Falkin def. Bektas/Kimbell, 7-5, 6-1
R32 Duncan/Falkin def. De Simone/Niu, 6-4, 6-4
R64 Duncan/Falkin def. Hogan/Jin, 6-1, 6-1