BERKELEY – For the first time since Jan. 25, when California shut out Washington, 4-0, the 16th-ranked Golden Bears will play at the Hellman Tennis Complex – against the 42nd-ranked Huskies in Cal’s Pac-12 Conference opener. The Bears (6-4) and Huskies (10-4, 0-2 in the Pac-12) will clash at noon on Saturday.
On Jan. 25, Cal’s victory over the Huskies in the finale of the ITA Kick-Off Weekend qualified the Bears for the USTA/ITA National Team Indoor Championships.
The Golden Bears remained at No. 16 in this week’s ITA team poll, while Washington dropped from No. 28 to 42. The Bears also have five singles players and three doubles teams ranked this week; the Huskies have one singles player and no doubles teams ranked (see below).
Cal and UW are two of 10 Pac-12 Conference teams ranked this week, including No. 1 UCLA, No. 4 Stanford, No. 10 USC, No. 28 Arizona State, No. 33 Arizona, No. 37 Utah, No. 47 Washington State and No. 62 Colorado.
There are 11 total Pac-12 doubles teams ranked, and the 11 come from a total of four teams – three each from Cal, UCLA and USC and two from Stanford. There are 26 Pac-12 players ranked in singles, with six from Stanford, five each from Cal and UCLA, four from USC, two from Arizona, two from Arizona State, one from Washington and one from Utah.
Scouting the Bears
Junior Zsofi Susanyi – who has a 17-7 singles record – has Cal’s highest ranking at No. 13
Susanyi claimed the Feb. 11 Pac-12 Player of the Week honor, after the Szeged, Hungary, product won all three of her singles matches at the ITA National Women’s Team Indoor Championships
The doubles team of Schutting and Manasse (10-5) is ranked 50th
The pair of Starr and senior Kelly Chui (4-4) is ranked No. 63
The duo of Schutting and Chi (5-4) is ranked 80th
Former Cal NCAA doubles champion and All-American Amanda Augustus is in her seventh season as head coach of the Bears
Associate head coach Cordell Ho, another Cal alum, is in his 17th season on the Cal women’s staff
Jan Brogan, who retired in 2007 after serving 29 years as the Golden Bears’ head coach, is Cal’s volunteer assistant coach
Scouting the Huskies
Washington plays at Stanford on Friday before taking on Cal on Saturday
Besides having played each other, UW and Cal have one common opponent in San Diego State; the Huskies beat the Aztecs at home, 6-1, and Cal beat SDSU at home, 5-2
Washington sophomore Elianne Douglas-Miron is ranked 97th in singles
Jill Hultquist is in her ninth year as head coach of the Huskies
Last Time Between Cal and Washington
Eighth-ranked California needed roughly two hours to defeat 43rd-ranked Washington, 4-0, in the finale of the ITA Kick-Off Weekend on Jan. 25 and advance to the ITA National Women’s Team Indoor Championships. Freshman and 31st-ranked Maegan Manasse clinched the team victory with a 6-0, 6-2 singles win over the Huskies’ Natalie Coronel on court six at the Hellman Tennis Complex.
The Bears quickly captured the doubles point. The pair of sophomores Lynn Chi and Klara Fabikova topped Washington’s Andjela Nemcevic/Julija Lukac on court three and the 48th-ranked team of Denise Starr and Zsofi Susanyi defeated Natalie Coronel/Grace Ysidora on court two by identical 6-3 scores.
Cal’s depth and talented young players were on full display in singles. Starr, ranked No. 15 in singles, raced out to a 6-0, 6-0 victory over Ysidora on court two to give Cal a 2-0 lead in the overall match. Fabikova, a second-year Bear, followed with a 6-0, 6-0 win over Riko Shimizu on court five, before Manasse – ranked 31st – wrapped up the match with her win on court six.
The teams played in an experimental format in the ITA Kick-Off Weekend, including playing all sets in singles and doubles to six games, with regular scoring and tiebreakers at 6-all. However, when a singles match split sets, a match tiebreaker was played in lieu of a third set. All the matches were played under the "clinch-clinch" format and with no warm-up against opponents.
Last Time for Cal: Bears Fall to Stanford in the Big Slam
The Big Slam – the annual rivalry matches between California and Stanford in women’s (and men’s) tennis – came down to the play of four freshmen on March 8 at the Channing Tennis Courts.
No. 16 Cal’s Denise Starr and Maegan Manasse battled, respectively, Carol Zhao and Caroline Doyle for the chance to give the Golden Bears a victory. Down 3-2, Cal needed both to win to claim a 4-3 victory. But Zhao prevailed in three sets to beat Starr 6-3, 6-7(6), 6-4 and clinch the match at 4-2, and then Manasse fell to Doyle in three sets, 6-2, 0-6, 7-6(8), for the final 5-2 score.
After the nonconference match, the Bears’ record fell to 6-4, while Stanford remained unbeaten at 8-0.
Cal trailed 1-0 entering singles after dropping the doubles point. The Bears led off with a victory on court three, as senior Alice Duranteau and sophomore Lynn Chi beat Krista Hardebeck/Caroline Doyle, 8-2. But Stanford won on court one – No. 14 Kristie Ahn/Carol Zhao defeated Manasse and senior Anett Schutting, 8-6 – and then on court two – No. 37 Taylor Davidson/Ellen Tsay (Stanford) beat Cal’s No. 39th-ranked team of Starr and senior Kelly Chui, 8-4 – to clinch the doubles point.
Bear junior Zsofi Susanyi – ranked 14th in singles – tied the overall match at 1-1 when she beat the 39th-ranked Hardebeck, 6-2, 6-2, on court two. Stanford retook the lead at 2-1 when the fifth-ranked Ahn topped the 26th-ranked Schutting, 6-3, 6-3, on court one.
Cal trailed 3-1 when sophomore Klara Fabikova lost to the Cardinal’s 35th-ranked Tsay, 6-4, 6-3, on court five. But the 43rd-ranked Chi’s 7-5, 6-3 win over the 21st-ranked Davidson on court four pulled Cal to within one of Stanford at 3-2 and set up the finish by the freshmen.
Cal welcomes Tulsa to Berkeley for a nonconference match on March 18 at 1:30 p.m. at the Channing Tennis Courts.