WOMEN'S TENNIS OPENS SEASON WITH 7-0 WIN AT #29 PEPPERDINE
MALIBU, Calif. — The Sacramento State women’s tennis team opened its 2009 season with a convincing 7-0 in at No. 29 Pepperdine, Sunday afternoon at the Ralphs-Straus Tennis Center.
The Hornets (1-0), who are ranked 58th nationally in the preseason poll, won two of the three doubles matches and claimed five of the singles matches in straight sets en route to the win.
Pepperdine actually won the first match of the day with an 8-1 at No. 2 doubles from Alex Liles and Anamika Bhargava over Luba Schifris and Aileen Tsan. Sacramento State bounced back when Clarisse Baca and Joyce Martinez Gutierrez defeated Alexandria Walters and Zlatka Petrova, 9-7, at No. 3. The Hornets then clinched the doubles point at No. 1 where Katrina Zheltova and Melissa Valenzuela recorded a 9-7 win.
In singles play, Martinez defeated Tania Rice, 6-1, 6-0, at No. 6 to give the team a 2-0 edge. Zheltova, who is 58th in the national singles rankings, followed with a 6-2, 6-4 win over Walters. The team clinched the contest with a 6-2, 6-4, win from Tsan at No. 2 over Alex Liles.
Sacramento State continued its success when Valenzuela downed Petrova, 7-5, 6-3, at No. 5. The team extended its lead to 5-0 with a 7-6, 6-1, victory by Maria Meliuk at No. 3. Meliuk, who was playing her first match for the Hornets, used a 7-0 victory in the first-set tie-break to help propel herself to the win.
The final point came at No. 4 where Schifris needed a super tie-break to claim victory over Andrea Oates. Shifris won the first set, 6-4, before falling 7-6 (8-6), in the second. The junior then outlasted Oates, 10-8, in the super tie-break.
The Hornets avenged a 7-0 loss to the Waves from a year ago and have now won 11 of their last 14 matches dating back to last season. The team’s only losses during that stretch have come against #3 Cal, #4 Stanford and #21 Arizona State.
Sacramento State will have some significant time away from competition as it does not play again until a Feb. 7 match at Washington State.
Sacramento State 7, Pepperdine 0
(Jan. 18, 2009, Malibu, Calif.)
1. Katrina Zheltova/Melissa Valenzuela (SAC) def. Jill Braverman/Anne Christine Voicu, 9-7
2. Alex Liles/Anamika Bhargava (PEP) def. Luba Schifris/Aileen Tsan, 8-1
3. Clarisse Baca/Joyce Martinez Gutierrez (SAC) def. Alexandria Walters/Zlatka Petrova, 9-7
1. #58 Katrina Zheltova (SAC) def. Alexandria Walters, 6-2, 6-4
2. Aileen Tsan (SAC) def. Alex Liles, 6-2, 6-4
3. Maria Meliuk (SAC) def. Jill Braverman, 7-6 (7-0), 6-1
4. Luba Schifris (SAC) def. Andrea Oates, 6-4, 6-7 (6-8), 1-0 (10-8)
5. Melissa Valenzuela (SAC) def. Zlatka Petrova, 7-5, 6-3
6. Joyce Martinez Gutierrez (SAC) def. Tania Rice, 6-1, 6-0