Klinger Wins Double Gold at USTA Boys' 14s
by James Hill, 17 August 2011
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Cameron Klinger of San Jose, Calif., fought his way to two titles at the USTA Boys 14 National Championships on Aug. 7-12 at the McFarlin Tennis Center in San Antonio, Texas.
Klinger won his first USTA gold ball in doubles, as he and partner Tommy Paul
of Greenville, N.C. - the tournament's top seeds - battled the No. 7 team of Ryan Dickerson
(Marlton, N.J.) and Kyle Seelig
(Hatfield, Pa.) to a 6-7 (5), 6-4, 6-1 victory.
The next morning, the second-seeded Klinger beat No. 14 Jake DeVine (Boca Raton, Fla.) 7-6 (8), 4-6, 6-1 to capture the top prize of singles in a two-and-a-half-hour match.
"That is a pretty fair thing to say," Klinger replied with a smile, when asked if he had to fight his way to two championships at the tournament hosted by the San Antonio Tennis Association. "I competed really well, and I showed mental toughness. I always had confidence that I could come back, and it happened. I also had a great partner who was there to help me."
Klinger became the first player to sweep the championships since 2006, when Junior Ore - now a standout at Texas A&M - won both the singles and doubles events.
The tenacious Klinger rallied from a 2-6 deficit in the first-set tiebreak of the championship match with DeVine. He won five straight points, to take a 7-6 lead before DeVine tied it at 7-7. DeVine lost his serve at 8-9, and Klinger polished off the first set with a trademark overhead smash.
But DeVine, who earlier eliminated the fourth and fifth seeds (Reilly Opelka and Sameer Kumar, respectively), took a 5-3 second-set lead on three service breaks. Klinger held serve in the ninth game, which seemed to last forever, but DeVine closed out the set with a service ace.
"We both served well, but he served a little better overall," said DeVine, a quarterfinalist at the 2010 tournament. "The difference can be a (service) break. Cameron was just too good."