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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Women’s tennis falls to Stanford; California up next

    Nick Smallwood

    Arizona women’s tennis athletes Lauren Marker and Shayne Austin during their 6-4 win against the University of San Diego on Feb. 12. The Wildcats lost their home game winning streak to Stanford on March 4.

    The Arizona women’s tennis team perfect record at home is no more after the team fell in their conference opener to Stanford 5-2.

    Stanford was in control from the start, winning the doubles point with relative ease, after that the Cardinal won on courts 2,3, and 4 to preserve their victory.

    Despite the loss, junior Lauren Marker was one of the few stand outs — she dominated her opponent in the first set before her opponent Taylor Davis retired due to injury.

    While a major concern coming into the weekend was that Arizona wouldn’t have enough in the tank to get through both matches this weekend, it shifted to whether there was anything in the tank to begin with.

    The Wildcats looked sluggish and the absence of head coach Vicky Maes did not help.

    The UA will hope to rebound on Saturday when it takes on the No. 2 team in the nation in California. This match will be the toughest Arizona will play all year.

    Fatigue could play a large part in this one, since the Wildcats are coming off a match on Friday against Stanford, another top team.

    Cal’s women’s tennis has grown since head coach Amanda Augustus, who is in her ninth season with the program, started at the school. Cal has been in the top 10 for nearly all of the season and enters the match with an unblemished record.

    The Golden Bears have four players nationally ranked, two of whom are ranked in the top 10; Senior Klara Fabikova ranked at fifth for singles and doubles and junior Maegan Manasse at tenth.

    Junior Lauren Marker is no stranger to playing the Golden Bears and knows what they bring to the table.

    “I think what sets Cal apart from other teams is their mental game,” she said. “No matter how much they are down by they keep going and they never like a match is over until it’s over.” 

    Just like with Stanford, the Golden Bears have a great doubles team. Considering Arizona struggles in doubles, it’s hard to envision the Wildcats getting the doubles point.

    With more than half of Cal’s single players being ranked, it’s even harder for Arizona to find points there, and singles is an area were Arizona does well in.

    Assistant Coach Santiago Lobelo understands the challenge ahead.

    “Cal will be a strong match for us tomorrow, but we still have the talent on this team to beat them and get the best out of our squad,” Lobelo said.

    But even beyond those ranked players, this Cal team is more loaded then Stanford, and that’s a scary thought for Arizona not just in this match but going deeper into Pac-12 play.

    While the Wildcats are undefeated at this season, many of the Pac-12 teams they will play have ranked players and the depth to dominate the Wildcats in both doubles and singles.

    This match should be more entertaining than the match against Stanford, but it remains to be seen how much Arizona will have left in the tank — fatigue could cause the Wildcats to fall.

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