After going .500 on the season after four games, the UCSB women’s tennis team will have a chance to improve its record this weekend, when the Gauchos face San Jose State and conference rival #42 UC Irvine.
Irvine (5-2 overall) was swept last Tuesday by #15 UCLA, but pulled off a huge upset last weekend by defeating #35 San Diego State University 7-0.
“Right now they’re hitting on all cylinders,” Head Coach Pete Kirkwood said of their conference opponent.
UCSB (2-2, 1-0 in the Big West) is the fourth-ranked team the Anteaters will have faced in their last four matches. They take on their first conference opponent, Cal Poly (3-1), in San Louis Obispo before traveling to Santa Barbara to play another conference match.
The Gauchos upset the Anteaters, who at the time were ranked #51[, in their last match 4-3. However, UC Irvine won the six matches prior to that win, with its most recent victory coming in the 2005 Big West Championship game, when Santa Barbara was defeated 4-2.
San Jose State (0-1) on the other hand, has only played one match thus far in the season. The Spartans’ last two matches were postponed due to weather, and have since been rescheduled for a future date. In SJSU’s first and only match of the season, the squad was swept 7-0 by Fresno Pacific University (5-0).
“Fresno Pacific is a tough team. The scores do not indicate the way we competed today,” Spartan Head Coach Anh-Dao Nguyen said of his team’s loss.
The Gauchos have won the past five meetings with San Jose State, most occurring with relative ease. In order to prepare for the upcoming matches, the team will be working on specific aspects of play.
“We need to work on doubles. We have to get off to great starts,” junior captain Charlotte Scatliffe said. “We need to start winning our three-setters.”
In the Gauchos’ last match, they lost to #67 Loyola Marymount University 4-3. In that match, two singles matches went to a third set but were lost by Santa Barbara players. The doubles teams also got off to a slow start, and only one was able to recover to win the match. However, the win was in vain, as neither of the other two teams could pull off wins and the Lions (2-0) won the doubles point.
The Gauchos take on San Jose State and UC Irvine on Saturday and Sunday, respectively. Both matches will take place at the Rec Cen courts at 11 a.m.