Jan. 20, 2008
BERKELEY - The No. 6 California women's tennis team concluded play at the 2008 Cal Winter Invitational with two doubles wins against No. 14 Fresno State and took all eight singles matches against St. Mary's today at the Hellman Tennis Complex in Berkeley, Calif. The Golden Bears hosted three schools in the three-day round-robin tournament; Fresno State, No. 57 St. Mary's, and No. 66 Nevada. The Winter Invitational was the final tournament for the Bears before the team begins dual match play on the road.
Starting the day off with doubles matches, the Bears found themselves quite literally in a dog-fight. Each match against the No. 14 Bulldogs needed at least 16 games for completion. On the fourth court, senior Daron Moore and freshman Rachael Dillon squandered a 5-2 lead to fall behind 6-5 at one point. The duo battled back however, to take the next two out of three games for the 9-7 win. On court three, with the score tied at seven games apiece, senior Cristina Visico held serve to give Cal the 8-7 lead before her and teammate junior Bojana Bobusic broke the Fresno State serve to win 9-7.
The doubles team of junior Claire Ilcinkas and freshman Marina Cossou needed a tie-breaker to decide their match against Fresno State's Anastasia Petukhova and Renata Kucerkova after each side held serve for the entire match. The Bears tied the breaker at six points each but the Bulldogs took the final two rallies to clinch the 9-8 victory.
On court one, the No. 36-ranked tandem of senior's Susie Babos and Stephanie Kusano faced the top-ranked doubles team in the nation in Fresno State's Melanie Gloria and Tinesta Rowe. The teams were on-serve for the first five games until the Bulldogs were able to earn a break on Babos' serve. The Bears fought back to take a break of their own and tie things up at five games each. Cal would earn another break on Rowe's service in game 11 and held serve to earn a match point with the score 7-6. The Bulldogs would not be denied however, as they would break-back on Babos' serve to tie the match at seven. The Bears ran out of gas at the end, giving up the final two games and the match to Fresno State.
In singles play, No. 10 Susie Babos dispatched Saint Mary's top player, Jessica Hoath 6-1, 6-4 to notch her first singles victory of the new year while her teammates each took care of their Gael counterparts down through court eight. The Bears concluded the weekend with several strong victories and now will look towards upcoming dual matches and the season's first road trip.
"We had a lot of good and competitive matches this weekend" said Cal head coach Amanda Augustus. "It was good for the girls to all get to play at the same time so that we could get a feel for the team dynamic as we head into the dual season. Overall, I'm very pleased with our performances this weekend. We had some things that we were able to catch and make technical adjustments on but overall, the team is doing a lot of things right."
Going undefeated in singles play, Fresno State's Melanie Gloria, ranked No. 39 in the nation, claimed the Cal Winter Invitational singles title. Gloria teamed up with Tinesta Rowe to go undefeated in doubles play as well as the No. 1-ranked doubles team in the country took the doubles title for the weekend. For complete results and draws, please visit www.tennisinformation.com and look for tournament No. 5179877.
The Bears will play their first dual match on the road next weekend, facing No. 41 Long Beach State at El Dorado Park in Long Beach, Calif. on Saturday (Jan. 26) at 2 p.m. The team will remain in the Los Angeles area to take on No. 18 Pepperdine on Sunday (Jan. 27) at 12 p.m. in Malibu, Calif.
1. No. 10 Susie Babos (Cal) def. Jessica Hoath (SMC) 6-1, 6-4
2. Marina Cossou (Cal) def. Alexandra Poorta (SMC) 6-2, 6-2
3. No. 54 Cristina Visico (Cal) def. Claire Soper (SMC) 6-3, 6-2
4. Claire Ilcinkas (Cal) def. Marah Calvo (SMC) 5-7, 6-1, 1-0(8)
5. No. 31 Bojana Bobusic (Cal) def. Stef Ordoveza (SMC) 7-6(3), 6-2
6. Stephanie Kusano (Cal) def. Nienke Strijbis (SMC) 6-2, 6-0
7. Daron Moore (Cal) def. Feline Charlot (SMC) 7-6(4), 6-1
8. Rachael Dillon (Cal) def. Erin Young (SMC) 7-6(4), 6-4
9. Vanessa Heroux (Fresno State) def. Bobbie Englert (Cal) 6-3, 6-3
1. No. 1 Gloria/Rowe (Fresno State) def. No. 36 Babos/Kusano (Cal) 9-7
2. Kucerkova/Petukhova (Fresno State) def. Cossou/Ilcinkas (Cal) 9-8(6)
3. Bobusic/Visico (Cal) def. Beatty/Heroux (Fresno State) 9-7
4. Dillon/Moore (Cal) def. Haskett/Paes (Fresno State) 9-7