Top-seeded Harry Seaborn learned Sunday that other players are gunning for him.
After two easy wins, Seaborn struggled against Andrew Pecht 6-4, 6-3 in the National Boys 16 Tennis Tournament at Newman Tennis Center.
The 15-year-old Seaborn rallied from behind in both sets in the round of 16 against a player more than a head shorter and 436 spots lower in the national rankings. Pecht, of Hyattsville, Md., used accurate groundstrokes to stay in the match.
Seaborn, No. 24 in the nation, led 2-1 in the first set, but Pecht won the next two games, as Seaborn yelled at himself after committing unforced errors.
"I wasn't hitting the way I wanted to," said Seaborn, who hails from North Salem, N.Y., but trains in College Park, Md. "A few points didn't go my way."
Seaborn broke Pecht to go up 5-4 when Pecht hit a backhand into the net. Seaborn then held serve to take the set.
Pecht raced to a 3-0 lead in the second set.
Seaborn, who reached the finals of the Copper Bowl last month in Tuscon, Ariz., turned it around with his serve and strong forehand. He reeled off six consecutive games, breaking Pecht three times.
Seaborn's opponent at 9 a.m. today in the quarterfinals is Nathan Pasha, a 6-foot-1 native of Atlanta training on a USTA scholarship at Evert Academy in Boca Raton, Fla. Pasha, 15, beat fellow Boca Raton resident Zachary Katz 6-2, 6-4.
Leading 4-2 in the second set, Pasha said he lost focus and gave up two games.
"I was upset because I haven't been serving well the whole tournament," Pasha said. "I usually have a better serve, so I am able to get free points."
Second-seeded Gonzales Austin of Miami also struggled at times, but he downed Harris Barnard 6-4, 6-4 to advance to the quarterfinals.
The final is scheduled for 9 a.m. Wednesday.