Women’s tennis gaining momentum as season closes

Women’s tennis gaining momentum as season closes

Photo Credits: BRIAN LANDRY / AGGIE

Aggies win two of three games over April weekend

The UC Davis women’s tennis team put together one of its most impressive performances of the season in a 6-1 win over visiting Northern Colorado at the Marya Welch Tennis Center on Friday afternoon. After a tough loss to a very talented Long Beach State on Saturday, the Aggies came back with their first shutout of the season on Sunday versus Montana State.

Expectations were high coming into this season, after the Aggies went 15-6 last spring and entered the Big West Conference Championship tournament as the No. 2 seed. UC Davis has struggled at times this year, with an overall record of 7-12, but has shown signs of improvement in recent weeks culminating in Friday’s win.

“We haven’t had a lot of matches that we were favored in, but I definitely think we were favored today and we came through beautifully,” said UC Davis Head Coach Bill Maze after Friday’s victory. “I think the whole team played great and that’s what I like. It turned out to be a great day all around.”

To start things off, the Aggies made it a clean sweep in doubles play by winning all three sets and claiming the first point of the afternoon.

In singles play, reigning Big West Athlete of the Week and sophomore Sara Tsukamoto thoroughly dominated her opponent at the No. 2 spot in a stunning 6-0, 6-0 victory. She is currently on a three-match winning streak and holds an 11-10 overall record in singles play.

It didn’t take long for the Aggies to extend their lead to 3-0, as sophomore Shirley Hall quickly wrapped up her match with a 6-0, 6-3 triumph. Hall leads the Aggies in singles play, having won 13 matches so far this season.

Junior Kristina Breisacher sealed the UC Davis victory at No. 4 with a comeback effort in her second set, winning the match by a final of 6-1, 6-4.

The two victories were another step in the right direction for UC Davis, coming off a 5-2 win over Sacramento State at the end of March.

“Everyone always asks about how to get confidence,” said UC Davis Head Coach Bill Maze. “Well I think you get confidence by winning, so I think we’re building some momentum and I think the team’s in a good place.”

Sunday’s win over Montana State was almost identical to the performance on Friday, with UC Davis sweeping the doubles point and then quickly wrapping things up in singles play. The match was played in the clinch format in order to speed up the pace of play, in anticipation of the men’s match against UC Santa Barbara which took place immediately thereafter.

UC Davis has three more games remaining on the schedule before the Big West Conference Championship, which takes place in Indian Wells, Calif. at the end of the month. All three games are happening this weekend, including an 11 a.m. showdown with UC Riverside on Picnic Day. Maze would like to see his team continuing to work hard in practices during the week and show up everyday with a positive mindset.

“We just like to give ourselves the best chance to win by preparing well and having good attitudes and great efforts, because that’s what we can control,” Maze said.

Written by: Brendan Ogburn — sports@theaggie.org