BERKELEY - Buoyed by a strong showing in singles, 16th-ranked California defeated San Diego State, 5-2, in a nonconference match on Friday at the Channing Tennis Courts. Maegan Manasse's court-six singles victory clinched the match, as the Golden Bears improved their record to 6-3. SDSU fell to 5-8.
Manasse, a freshman, beat the Aztecs' Hailey Johnson, 6-1, 6-4, in singles.
This marked Cal’s first home match since beating San Francisco, 7-0, on Jan. 31 at the Channing courts. It was also Cal’s first action since playing at USC on Feb. 22, due to the postponement of Cal’s March 1 home match vs. Stanford due to inclement weather.
“Overall we were just happy to get back on the courts again,” Cal head coach Amanda Augustus said. “We hadn’t played in a couple of weekends now. It’s good to be back home again and playing an opponent we tend to play annually. It was a nice match. I thought San Diego State competed quite well. They’re always well coached, and I thought they competed quite hard today.”
Cal trailed 1-0 entering singles after losing the doubles point to the Aztecs. First the Cal pair of senior Alice Duranteau and sophomore Lynn Chi lost to Kennedy Davis/Tami Nguyen, 8-5, on court three. The Bears tied doubles when Manasse and senior Anett Schutting topped Laura Antonaña/Kristin Buth, 8-5, on court one. Cal’s 39th-ranked duo of senior Kelly Chui and freshman Denise Starr had the chance to secure the doubles point on court two, but the team of Johnson and Dora Somoracz held off the Bears, 8-6, to give the Aztecs the early lead.
Starr, ranked 28th in singles, quickly disposed of Nguyen, 6-3, 6-0, on court three to tie the overall match at 1-1, and sophomore Klara Fabikova lifted Cal to a 2-1 lead with her 6-3, 6-1 triumph over Somoracz on court five. Junior Zsofi Susanyi, ranked 14th in singles, then beat Buth, ranked 121st, on court two, 6-3, 6-2, and Cal led 3-1.
After Manasse beat Johnson to clinch the overall contest, the teams played out the final two matches, with Chi, ranked 43rd, prevailing on court four and Schutting, ranked 26th, falling to the 54th-ranked Antonaña. Chi fell behind 5-0 in the first set to Davis before eventually falling 6-2. But the Bear rebounded to win a tight second set, 7-6(6), and then she completed the win by taking the match tiebreaker, 1-0(10).
“Lynn got off to a slow start in singles today, but credit to her she just kept on finding a way back into the match,” Augustus said. “The match was already decided, so they played a 10-point tiebreak, and I think Lynn was just able to use her experience to get through the match and get another win and another point for the Bears.”
Schutting dropped her first set to Antonaña, 6-3, but forced a third set by winning the second, 6-3. The Aztec eventually won the third set, 6-4, and the match, to make the final overall score 5-2.
Cal returns to the Channing Tennis Courts at noon on Saturday for the Big Slam vs. No. 9 Stanford.
No. 16 Cal (6-3) defeated San Diego State (5-8) – 5-2