Stacy Martin of Largo and Eleni Rossides of Fairfax will lead the women's field of 32 into the United States Tennis Association National Amateur men's and women's indoor championships beginning today at the Mount Vernon Health and Racquet Club in Alexandria.
The men's field of 64 will be led by Arkie Engle of Brookline, Mass., who is ranked third nationally, and William Harvey of Exmore, Va. Harvey is ranked 10th nationally. Danny Cantwell of Salisbury, Craig Shelburne of Bethesda and Ken Anderson of Springfield, who was a semifinalist last year, are other top entries.
Missing from this year's tournament will be last year's singles champions, Ed Nagel and Jeri Ingram.
Martin, who attends Hendersonville (N.C.) High School, won this tournament in 1984 and 1985. She was the top seed last year but fell to Elizabeth Alexander in the semifinals, 6-4, 6-0.
"I wasn't able to get into my game that day," said Martin, who goes to school in North Carolina to study at the Gary Johnson Tennis Academy. "I kept waiting for an opening but I was rushing my shots too much."
Although she said she expects a tougher field this year, she said there will be less pressure on her because she isn't the defending champion. "All I can do is go out there and just try to play my game," she said.
Rossides, who plays for Stanford University, which is ranked No. 1 in the country, is a graduate of Sidwell Friends School.
The singles matches will begin at 9 a.m. today. The women's singles final will be Friday at 1 p.m., followed by the women's doubles final. The men's singles final will be Saturday at 2 p.m., and will be followed by the doubles final.