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The Big West Championship and an automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament came down to a tiebreaker in the last match, but the No. 65 UC Santa Barbara men’s tennis team lost 4-3 to No. 63 Cal Poly in Indian Wells yesterday. On Saturday, the women’s team lost 4-1 to eventual champion No. 43 Long Beach State in the semifinals.
“It was nervous for everyone at the end,” Head Coach Marty Davis said. “The tennis wasn’t great in the tiebreaker because both players were so incredibly tense.”
Tied at three apiece, the championship came down to UCSB junior Max Glenn and Sebastian Bell battling in the No. 6 court. Three sets were not enough, and Bell ended up winning the 7-4 tiebreaker.Poly started up 2-0 as Andre Dome, the No. 40 player in the country, defeated Mbonisi Ndimande and sophomore Sasha Gryaznov.
“Dome dominated the No. 1 doubles and singles matches, so hopefully [Forget] will remember Saturday’s match better since he played incredible,” Davis said.
This marks the first Big West Tournament win for Cal Poly, after UCSB had won four of the last six, including a win over the Mustangs in the 2007 finals. The Gauchos finish the season at 14-10 while the Mustangs improve to 15-7 and will represent the Big West in the first round of the NCAA Championships in two weeks.
“We had a pretty good shot at doubles with leads at No. 2 and 3, and then Max had the lead in the third set twice and couldn’t hang on,” Davis said. “So that’s two points that could have gone the other way in a championship match.”
Forget defeated Fabian Matthews, ranked No. 99 in the country, 6-3, 3-6, 6-2 at the No. 1 court. Ziad Sultan and Gryaznov won in straight sets at No. 4 and 5, and Glenn clinched the victory witha5-7,6-2,7-6(4)winatNo.6toset up Sunday’s Blue-Green rivalry.
The UCSB women’s team entered the tournament as the No. 5 seed and played No. 4 seed Cal Poly (10-11) in Friday’s quarterfinals. After nearly five and a half hours, the Gauchos walked away with a 4-3 victory.
The Gauchos lost the doubles point and the No. 5 and 6 singles matches. Senior Sofia Novak won 6-4, 3-6, 6-1 in the No. 1 spot, senior Natalia Lozano swept the No. 2 court and freshman April Scatliffe and sophomore Paola Cos won in three sets at No. 3 and 4.
Long Beach, ranked No. 1 overall, started by winning the doubles point, and Anais Dallara, the No. 101 ranked player in the country, defeated Novak 6-0, 6-0 to start with a 2-0 lead. Senior Jordan Dockendorf won 6-3, 6-3 at court No. 5, but Rachel Manasse and Laura Bernard swept Lozano and Scatliffe at the No. 2 and 3 courts.
UCSB finishes the season at 11-14 overall while Long Beach is 18-5 after defeating No. 3 seed Irvine 4-1 yesterday. It is the eighth time in nine years that the 49ers have won the Big West Tournament and advanced to the NCAAs.
UCSB senior Mathieu Forget, ranked No. 124, 6-3, 6-1. The Gauchos soon evened the score with wins by junior