COSTA MESA — Annie Radeva finally knows what it feels like to win her hometown tournament.
This year marked the third and final year playing in the girls' 16 singles draw for the Newport Harbor High junior-to-be.
This year, she came away with her first Costa Mesa Summer Junior Classic title.
The top-seeded Radeva overpowered No. 4-seeded Shuchen Lin of Irvine, 6-4, 6-0, to capture the title Friday at Costa Mesa Tennis Center.
"It's definitely nice to win it," Radeva said. "I mean, my sister [Nelly] always played it and now I'm always playing it. We live like two minutes away, so it's super-nice."
Nelly, who recently graduated from Vanderbilt University, was on hand to watch her younger sister's title-clinching performance Friday. She has been hitting with Annie this summer at Newport Harbor. On Friday, Annie wore Nelly's black Vanderbilt shirt, with "Radeva" in white letters on the back.
"I've been hitting with her a lot," Annie Radeva said. "I'm glad she'll hit with me, because she was really tired when she got back. All she wanted to do was sleep, but she made time to come hit with me."
Annie Radeva was playing against Lin for the first time. The first set was tight but Radeva went up a break of serve early and won it. She used her momentum to cruise in the second set, not dropping a game.
"In the warmup I just tried to figure her out," she said. "I knew her backhand was definitely her weaker side. In the first set, she was playing really well, she was serving really well. I just tried to stay in the point as long as I could, because I knew she would miss after a few shots.
"The second set, I feel like she gave up a little bit. She wasn't jumping around or anything; she just didn't want to be there anymore. That's the vibe I got from her, so it just encouraged me to push harder and just close it out, not give her any opportunities."
Radeva took advantage of her own opportunities. She has been playing well lately, advancing to the round of 32 at Southern California Junior Sectionals, but said she was unhappy with the way she played in the consolation draw there. This was her next tournament, so she said she wanted to prove herself with a good result.
Next summer, Radeva will be 17, and she knows what that means.
"Hopefully, I can win 18s next year," she said. "That's probably my goal for this tournament."
Saleh earns title
Andre Saleh of Newport Beach was the lone local to win a doubles title Friday at the Costa Mesa Summer Junior Classic. Saleh and partner Parth Sharma of Torrance, the No. 3 seeds, outlasted Aaron Diemer and Jerry Huang of British Columbia, 4-6, 7-6 (9-7), and 10-6 in the super-tiebreaker to capture the boys' 14 doubles title.
"We were just trying to stay positive the whole time," said Saleh, who turned 13 last month and is home-schooled. He is ranked No. 93 in Southern California in the 14s.
Diemer and Huang served for the match at 6-5 in the second set, but Saleh and Sharma were able to rally.
Saleh said it's his first title at Costa Mesa. He and Sharma also topped top-seeded Peter Clemente III of Palm Springs and Emin Torlic of Irvine, 7-6, 6-4, in a semifinal match earlier Friday. Saleh plays singles this weekend at a tournament at Cypress College.
Andre's older brother Dante, who will play at Auburn next year, won the boys' 12 and 14 singles titles at Costa Mesa in 2006 and '07, respectively.
Other locals fell in doubles championship matches Friday. Corona del Mar High junior-to-be Riley Gerdau and sophomore-to-be Siena Sharf lost in the girls' 18 doubles title match to Alyssa Grijalva and Kalani Soli, 6-1, 6-1.
Newport Coast resident Max Pham and Sage Hill sophomore-to-be Kenan Torlic lost to Bryan Husin and Hong Kit Wong of Hong Kong, 6-0, 6-2, in the boys' 16 doubles title match. And top-seeded Max McKennon of Newport Beach and partner Caleb Wilkins of Long Beach fell to Wan Xi Chen and Jian Yu Tan of Hong Kong, 6-3, 6-4, in the boys' 12 doubles final.
Newport Beach resident Nicole Knickerbocker and partner Shweta Kumar of Irvine, the No. 2 seeds, fell to top-seeded Isabella Oedekirk of San Juan Capistrano and Adithya Karunaratne of Hong Kong, 6-1, 6-0, in the girls' 14 doubles final.