In its most complete performance of the season, the No. 66 UCSB women’s tennis team won 6-1 over Pacific on Saturday, improving to 3-7 overall and 2-0 in Big West play. The Gauchos are also 2-0 at home while Pacific drops to 4-6 overall and 1-3 in conference.
“There was no way we were gonna lose today,” Assistant Coach Charlotte Scatliffe said. “The focus was there and since our schedule has been so tough, I’ve really been pumping [the team] up for this match and this opportunity.”
With its fifth match in eight days, including a tough loss at No. 7 USC on Thursday, Santa Barbara bounced back with a strong effort as all five singles victories took just two sets. The momentum started with senior Natalia Lozano earning the doubles point and freshman April Scatliffe rallied from being down 3-6 to win 8-6 in the No. 2 court to take two out of the three doubles matches.
The Gauchos have emphasized their Big West schedule and were especially prepared for the Tigers, as they knocked UCSB out of the Big West Conference Championships last year.
“We were motivated ‘cause we lost to them twice last year,” sophomore Kiersten Meehan said, who won 6-3, 6-2 in the No. 3 spot. “Last year we lost to both the teams in conference that we beat [this year], so I think we should do really well in conference.”
After just a day off, UCSB goes back to its nonconference schedule and hosts St. John’s (NY) today at 1:30 p.m. at the Rob Gym Courts.
The UCSB men’s tennis team, ranked No. 61 in the country, also had an impressive performance with a 7-0 sweep over conference foe UC Davis later that Saturday. UCSB (7-4 overall, 2-0 Big West) has now won three straight and remains undefeated at home at 4-0.
Davis (3-6, 0-3) was unable to get on track at any point, as Santa Barbara started strong, sweeping the doubles matches and winning the point for the only time this month.
“We got two teams I feel good about,” Head Coach Marty Davis said. “So we’re looking for one more good doubles team, and that’ll be the focus again in practice this week.”
The Gauchos kept the pressure on and won all six singles matches, all but one in just two sets, including junior Max Glenn’s 6-0, 6-2 mark. Senior Mathieu Forget, named last week’s Big West Male Tennis Athlete of the Week, also continued his strong play with a quick 6-1, 6-1 win in the No. 1 spot. Forget was paired with junior Mbonisi Ndimande for an 8-4 win on the No. 1 doubles court.
“We really had a good focus on doubles this week in practice,” Glenn said. “Winning all three doubles matches was great … that kicked it off and we were all feeling confident and kept it rolling.”
The Gauchos’ next opponent is No. 53 Cal Poly on Saturday in San Luis Obispo.