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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    W-tennis set for home tilt with Sacramento State

    Following back-to-back wins against Wyoming and Hawaii, the Arizona women’s tennis team is gearing up for its home match against No. 39 Sacramento State today at 1:30 p.m. at the Robson Tennis Center.

    Arizona (9-5, 1-2 Pacific 10 Conference) moved up to No. 62 in the ITA rankings this week. Doubles partners junior Claire Rietsch and freshman Natasha Marks, are ranked No. 51 in doubles play, and senior Danielle Steinberg and freshman Sarah Landsman are seeded in the No. 75 position.

    UA assistant coach Ryan Stotland was encouraged by his team’s recent performances, particularly the last two wins in which Arizona won by margins of seven and five, respectively.

    “”I feel like our last two matches, especially, we are starting to play to our capability. We’re progressing, getting into the second half of the season. We have a really tough schedule coming up with some of the top teams in the country,”” he said. “” … I feel we have a good chance to pick off some top teams. We’re hoping they take us lightly.””

    Head coach Vicky Maes added, “”We played two teams that were very beatable. We didn’t take Claire Rietsch on the trip so we were a little short on players. … Our girls did a great job adjusting to the courts. We did a great job, winning the doubles point both times and our singles as convincingly as we did.””

    Maes also said the Wildcats are taking today’s match seriously, but are not daunted by the No. 39 ranking Sacramento State carries into the matchup.

    “”It looks like it’s going to be windy, and the wind is definitely a neutralizer,”” she added. “”If we play the same way we did last week, I know we’re going to be OK.””

    However, in light of Arizona’s schedule following today’s match, she also described the afternoon as a “”must-win.””

    “”The matches we’re going to play after that are a series of Pac-10s,”” Maes said. “” … Those matches are going to be very tough for us to win and if we’re going to have any chance for us to go to nationals … we need to close out on this match.””

    And closing out matches has been tough for the Wildcats this season. Arizona has consistently dropped the doubles and been forced to salvage its wins during singles play.

    “”We’ve been close in all our losses,”” Stotland said of the team’s 9-5 record. “”Even with some of our wins we’ve had a couple things go our way. … All matches were winnable.””

    Maes added, “”I think the toughest thing for the girls, and us coaches, has been that we’ve been on the road so much. It makes us tired. … Being at home is like a treat for us now. It’s been so rare this year.””

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