Former Virginia Cavalier Danielle Collins and and current Wahoo Thai-Son Kwiatkowski completed their dominant runs through the American Collegiate Invitational event Saturday, winning their respective titles to lock in bids to the qualifying draws at the 2017 US Open. Neither Cavalier lost a set during the tournament.
Collins, a 2016 graduate of the University started hot in the first set of her match against Michigan graduate Ronit Yurovsky, going up 5-0 before battling out a 6-2 first set victory. Yurovsky played a stronger second set, but ultimately Collins prevailed 6-4 to grab the women’s title in her second appearance in the ACI. Collins has previously received wild card entries into the main draw at the US Open by virtue of winning the NCAA Singles title in 2014 and 2016.
Kwiatkowski, who is starting his senior season at Virginia, capped a spectacular run in New York with a 6-2, 6-2 destruction of Georgia graduate Austin Smith. Smith was unable to get a break point on Kwiatkowski in the match. Kwiatkowski received a wild card into the qualifying draw in this year’s US Open, and the title means he will be guaranteed of another next year after he finishes his college career. The Virginia senior is also eligible to participate in the 2017 ACI event.
The ACI, officially a part of the US Open features only current college players (including at least two graduating seniors), with eight men and eight women competing in a single-elimination singles tournament. If Collins or Kwiatkowski finishes in the top 120 next year, they will receive a wildcard entry into the main draw — otherwise, they’ll be in the qualifying draw.