In the first of eight All-American matchups on opening day at the Oracle Challenger Series Indian Wells, former University of Virginia teammates JC Aragone and Brandon Nakashima went to battle for a spot in the second round.
It was Aragone who came out on top, defeating Nakashima in straight sets 6-1, 6-4. Riding an impressive first serve all match long in which he won 78% of the points (25/32), as well as a 100% success rate on break points (4/4), Aragone proved to be too much for the 17-year old.
While Nakashima, who was making his Oracle Challenger Series debut, had inspiring moments throughout the match, it wasn’t enough to overcome the experience of a veteran like Aragone. Regardless, tennis fans would be amiss not to keep tabs on Nakashima moving forward, as the college freshman is just getting started on his journey on the competitive circuit.
With a 2019 BNP Paribas Open wild card on the line, Aragone will need to have his most successful Oracle Challenger Series yet in order to catapult himself atop the Road to Indian Wells leaderboard. Currently holding 35 points accumulated from past events, he needs a few more wins this week in order to give himself a chance at earning one of the sought-after wild cards.
The journey gets tougher quickly for Aragone, who will face off against Oracle Challenger Series No. 2 seed Filip Krajinovic next. The World No. 72 ranked Serbian is coming off a strong performance in Montpellier and looking to continue his momentum in Indian Wells.
Tune in this week to see if the American can continue his journey on the Road to Indian Wells!