65.3 F

Davis, California

Thursday, May 23, 2024

Aggies trounce Gauchos, Highlanders

The UC Davis women’s tennis team controls its own destiny.

With this weekend’s sweep of Big West Conference foes UC Santa Barbara and UC Riverside, the Aggies can win a regular season conference title next weekend.

On Saturday, the Aggies topped nationally ranked UCSB, giving themselves an emotional boost in the final weeks of the season.

“We knew this was going to be a battle,” said coach Bill Maze. “This [Aggie] team knows they can win.”

Following the win, UC Davis came out Sunday for another dominating performance over a fellow Big West Conference team in UC Riverside.

With the two wins, the Aggies move into first place in conference improving their league record to 6-1 and 16-4 overall.

Saturday – No. 65 UC Davis 5, No. 54 UC Santa Barbara 2

UC Davis earned the victory despite losing the doubles point, and Maze praised the ability of his team in the singles matches.

The Aggies came up just short of sweeping the singles play, as Dahra Zamudio was the only player to lose her match.

Junior Nicole Koehly provided a hard-earned point for the Aggies in a straight-set victory over her opponent, and Maze was impressed with her effort.

“Koehly did everything right,” Maze said. “She competed, didn’t miss, and cranked her forehand. Everyone in singles was incredible.”

The team was boosted by the return of sophomore Ellie Edles, who had been out with injury for an extended period of time. Edles was not performing at 100 percent on Saturday, though, and was forced to serve underhand because of her back injury. In spite of pain, she still won her match in straight sets.

“[Edles] stayed really competitive and didn’t have a negative attitude,” said assistant coach Randi Schuler.

Megan Heneghan also won her match in straight sets before Kelly Chui clinched the UC Davis victory in her own two-set match. Lauren Curry provided the final Aggie victory.

Maze emphasized the significance of the win, with only two more Big West Conference matches remaining before the postseason tournament.

“We’re getting there,” Maze said. “This is a big win for us.”

Sunday – No. 65 UC Davis 7, UC Riverside 0

The team continued to impress on Sunday, sweeping Big West opponent UC Riverside.

The Aggies dominated from the beginning, showing their ability against a team that has yet to win a conference match.

UC Davis did not lose any of the doubles matches on Sunday, and also swept the singles matches en route to the victory.

Koehly continued her excellent play as she dropped her opponent 6-0, 6-0. All of the Aggie players won their matches in straight sets.

It was a very positive weekend for the UC Davis team, with the regular season conference title coming into view. While the Aggies won on Saturday against UC Santa Barbara, the Cal Poly Mustangs lost their first conference match of the year.

UC Davis and Cal Poly are now tied atop the Big West standings.

If the Aggies can beat Long Beach State on Saturday, they will earn at least a share of the Big West regular season title, and with that a likely number 1 or 2 seed in the Big West Championships.

UC Davis is vying for its first ever Big West tennis championship.

CAELUM SHOVE can be reached at sports@theaggie.org.


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