- Associated Press - Wednesday, January 26, 2011

DURHAM, N.C. (AP) - Leading junior tennis player Beatrice Capra has signed a letter of intent to go to Duke.

The 18-year-old Capra, of Ellicott City, Md., earned attention at last year’s U.S. Open by reaching the third round.

Making her Grand Slam debut while ranked 371st, Capra upset 18th-seeded Aravane Rezai and 95th-ranked Karolina Sprem in New York, before losing to three-time major champion Maria Sharapova.

Duke and the U.S. Tennis Association both announced Capra’s signing.

Patrick McEnroe, general manager of USTA player development, said in a statement released Wednesday that the USTA supports Capra’s decision and feels “strongly that collegiate tennis can be part of one’s pathway to pro tennis.”

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