Event: St. Mary’s Invitational Tournament
Where: Moraga, Calif.
When: Friday through Sunday, all day
Who to watch: Sophomore Dahra Zamudio is coming off a strong showing at the Nike Invitational Tournament in Berkeley.
The Orange, Calif. native represented the Aggies well at the prestigious tournament, making it to the semifinals of the Flight A consolation bracket.
In that match, she fell in two sets (6-3, 7-5) to Catherine Isip of St. Mary’s.
Did you know? UC Davis has historically done well at the St. Mary’s Invitational.
Last season, two Aggies faced off in the Flight C singles championship match while senior Desiree Stone took the Flight A consolation bracket.
Preview: For the Aggies, the St. Mary’s Invitational is the first major tournament of the season as all eight team members will be in attendance.
Zamudio and Stone will play in Flight A, the highest level of competition, while Herzyl Legaspi, Sidney Brady, Shawdee Rouhafza, Noelle Eades, Lauren Curry and Eleanor Edles will all compete in Flight B.
“I think because of the flight system, all can do well in their flights,” said 14-year coach Bill Maze.
As the St. Mary’s Invitational is early in the season, it gives the Aggies a good opportunity to get some experience and match play before starting the dual matchups in conference events.
“It’s fun to go to St. Mary’s because it gives us an opportunity to get a feel for who’s on the team,” Maze said. “It also lets us figure out the best lineup going into dual play.”
Zamudio is one of his top players, as he finished last season ranked number one on the team and is already making strides in 2009.
Maze wasn’t hesitant to talk up his star player, saying that she accomplished a lot at the Nike Invitational while expecting her to continue her successes throughout the season.
While winning the invitational would be a plus for the Aggies, Maze wants to ensure the team has fun this weekend.
“I want them all to have fun,” Maze said, “because when you’re having fun, you’re playing better.”
– Jason Alpert