Feb. 24, 2012
LOS ANGELES - The fifth-ranked California women's tennis team (6-2) dropped a 4-3 decision to No. 3 UCLA (11-0) at the Los Angeles Tennis Center on Friday, Feb. 24. The Golden Bears were without senior Jana Juricova but pushed the Bruins to the edge before UCLA came up with its 11th straight win.
"Even though we lost, today, it was a great tennis atmosphere," said head coach Amanda Augustus. "I thought we played really well, in doubles, considering people were in different positions than we are used to. It was definitely a great experience for the younger players on our team, but I felt everyone really showed up and gave their best effort, today."
Without the availability of Juricova, the Bears moved their team of junior Annie Goransson and sophomore Anett Schutting to the top doubles court where it faced UCLA's 12th-ranked tandem of Robin Anderson and Skylar Morton. The top match would later decide the doubles point.
At court two, junior Tayler Davis teamed with Juricova's normal partner freshman Zsofi Susanyi to claim the first win of the day, 8-2, over Pamela Montez and Chanelle Van Nguyen. UCLA responded to even the race for the doubles point with a win at No. 3 doubles where McCall Jones and Carling Seguso defeated sophomore Alice Duranteau and freshman Cecilia Estlander, 8-4.
At the top court, Goransson and Schutting were serving against a 7-6 deficit, but the Bruins seized a 40-15 lead in the game. Anderson and Morton eventually broke the Cal serve and helped UCLA claim the first point of the day with an 8-6 win at the top doubles court.
Unfazed, the Bears won the first set in five singles matches. At court four, Goransson kicked off the Cal comeback with a 6-2, 6-1 win over No. 121-ranked Morton to even the dual at one-all. No. 23-ranked Susanyi upset No. 6 Anderson at the top court, 6-3, 6-4, to give the Bears a 2-1 lead.
"I was quite impressed with the level of play we displayed on the top three courts," said Augustus. "It just shows that we can be competitive, even without our top player. We have a really deep team, and I think this time of the year is perfect for everyone to get tough match experience."
The Bears continued to press and came up with a third point when No. 48 Davis took out No. 90 Jones, 6-4, 6-2, at No. 2 singles. That was when the Bruins began to make a comeback of their own. At court five, No. 103 Estlander won her first set, 6-1, against No. 102 Van Nguyen, but her Bruin counterpart game back to split the match with a 6-3 win in the second set. Van Nguyen finished off Estlander with a 6-2 win in the third to tack up UCLA's second point of the day.
At court six, Duranteau's comeback bid was cut short in the second-set tiebreaker as No. 61 Kaitlin Ray completed a 6-2, 7-6 win to even the dual score at three-all.
At court three, No. 85 Schutting won her first set against No. 98 Montez, 6-3, and had a five-all tie in the second set before Montez came alive to split the match with a 7-5 win. Montez was unrelenting in the final stanza as she recorded a 6-2 win to keep the Bruins undefeated in 11 dual matches.
The Bears are back in action in a noon PT match against No. 7 USC (8-1) on Saturday, Feb. 25, at the David X. Marks Tennis Stadium. Please visit www.usctrojans.com for live scores and streaming video.
No. 3 UCLA 4, No. 5 California 3