Originally created 02/21/01

Floridian wins tennis tournament



Yasmin Schnack burned through the U.S. Tennis Association Girls 14 National Open.

Top-seeded Schnack defeated No. 6 seed Link Leskosky 6-4, 6-0 in 84 minutes to win the finals at Newman Tennis Center on Tuesday morning.

In the first set, Schnack jumped out to a 3-1 lead until Leskosky ran off three straight games to lead 4-3. Schnack fell down 30-0 on her serve in the eighth game of the set. But she tied her shoe and regrouped.

"I was nervous," Schnack said. "I was taking my time."

Schnack, of Indiatlantic, Fla., tied the game at 30 but hit an unforced error to give Leskosky the point. But Schnack fought the game back to deuce and soon tied the set at 4-all.

Schnack broke Leskosky's serve for a 5-4 lead and then served out the set for a 6-4 win.

"I was trying to keep the ball in play and make her make mistakes," Schnack said.

While both girls hustled and ran down balls in the first set, Leskosky, of Macon, Ga., seemed to have run out of steam in the second set. Schnack had no problems in the final set as she defeated her opponent 6-0.

"I felt more confident," she said. "I was getting the ball in better."

In four matches before the championship match, Schnack had lost just eight games. Meanwhile, Leskosky got to the finals with a 7-5, 7-5 upset of second-seeded Katrina Tsang.

The USTA has four national open qualifying tournament for the Girls 14 division. The other sites were in California, Texas and Alabama.

The top six girls from each site automatically qualified for the USTA Super National Spring Championship on April 12.

"I didn't even know we were going to have this until Jan. 4," tournament director Dick Hatfield said. "We were kind of a late recipient of this event because they had no place to put it. And it needed to be in the South."

Newman Tennis Center will be holding a national tournament for 12- and 13-year-old boys and girls in November.

Reach Chris Gay at (706) 868-1222.