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Saturday, May 18, 2024

UC Davis falls to UC Santa Barbara in Big West Quarterfinals

By finishing fourth in the conference standings, UC Davis was slotted to face the fifth-seeded UC Santa Barbara in its opening matches at the Big West women’s tennis championship on April 25. The Gauchos started off strong and recorded three straight sets to post a 4-0 victory over the Aggies.

It was the second time in recent history that UC Davis faced UC Santa Barbara at Indian Wells in quarterfinals; in the 2010 tournament, the Gauchos defeated the Aggies by the score of 4-1. This time, much like the last time the two teams faced off, UC Santa Barbara once again was victorious against UC Davis.

UC Santa Barbara set the tone early into the game. In the first doubles match, the Gauchos posted a lopsided 8-1 victory over the pairing of freshman Samantha Martino and sophomore Tiffany Pham. Although down 4-1 in their second doubles game, the Aggies rallied back from the early deficit. The duo of seniors Megan Heneghan and Melissa Kobayakawa defeated the Gaucho’s pair of Priscilla Garcia and Jaimee Gilbertson, 8-7.

The final doubles match was also intensesly contested. However, the Gauchos eventually secured an 8-7 win and gained a 1-0 lead in team points.

UC Santa Barbara continued its momentum in the singles matches. Garcia won over freshman Kamila Kecki in straight set, 6-3, 6-2. This was followed up with a victory by Stacy Yam over senior Nicole Koehly, 6-0, 6-3. And finally, in the last singles match, April Scatliffe for the Gauchos defeated junior Layla Sanders with the score of 6-1, 6-3. With the 4-0 defeat of UC Davis, UC Santa Barbara entered the semifinal rounds.

With this loss, the Aggies end the season with a 12-10 overall record.

The Big West tournament ended on April 27 and No. 1 seed Long Beach State claimed its 11th women’s tennis title with a 4-2 victory over No. 2 seed UC Irvine.

This season was filled with impressive victories, tough losses and injuries for the Aggies. Hopefully, they will be able to build off from this year and improve on this year’s results in the next season.

JANET ZENG can be reached at sports@theaggie.org.

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