The championship gets underway on Wednesday. Courtesy of the Barnes Tennis Center

The United States Tennis Association Billie Jean King Girls’ 16s National Championship began Wednesday at the Barnes Tennis Center in Ocean Beach and Balboa Tennis Club in Balboa Park, with all four San Diego County players among the first-round winners.

Claire Zhang defeated Bryson Langford of Leawood, Kansas, 6-1, 6-1, and fellow San Diegan Elena Zhao was a 6-3, 6-4 winner over Mary Bellia of Granger, Indiana. Emily Deming of Fallbrook defeated Emma Roeck of Boca Raton, Florida, 6-2, 6-1.

Alyssa Ahn of San Diego defeated Isabelle Chong of Lake Forest, Illinois, 6-0, 6-1, in a later match.

Theadora Rabman of Port Washington, New York, is the top seed. She won the girls’ singles title at the 2021 Adidas Easter Bowl, winning six matches in straight sets.

Each of the top 32 seeded players in the 256-player singles draw received first-round byes. Rabman is scheduled to play her first match Thursday at 11 a.m. against Sari Woo of Ann Arbor, Michigan, a 6-1, 6-3 winner over Olivia Marais of Lodi in a first-round match Wednesday.

The singles winner will receive a berth in the U.S. Open Junior Championships.

Past champions include Chris Evert and Tracy Austin.

Rabman and Tatum Evans of McLean, Virginia, are seeded first in the 128-team doubles draw.

Admission and parking are free. The tournament concludes next Wednesday.

The tournament has been held annually in San Diego since 1990 except for last year, when it was moved to Mobile, Alabama, to accommodate social- distancing protocols.

Updated at 9 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 4, 2021

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