The UCSB women’s tennis team hits the road again this week to play a stretch of matches in Washington, the first of which will be against Gonzaga University.

After wining an emotional and thrilling game at home against Hawaii last Friday, the Gauchos (9-7 overall, 4-2 in the Big West) look to establish a win streak in order to prepare for the Big West Tournament.

“We’ll have to play a lot of tennis. It is going to be a good test both physically and mentally,” said junior Marta Simic. “We want to win a few in a row. It’s going to be good preparation for the Big West [Tournament].”

First up for Santa Barbara is Gonzaga (4-14, 0-4 West Coast Conference), which won its last match against Eastern Washington after losing the previous seven by a significant margin.

The last time these two teams met was in 2003, when the Gauchos swept Gonzaga 7-0. With the Bulldogs struggling this year, it seems as if Santa Barbara is in a good position to claim consecutive victories.

While in Washington, the Gauchos will play four matches in four days, which could possibly be straining on the players, who have had a few injuries on the year. However, the squad currently appears to be at full health.

The Gauchos will continue to work on their doubles play while on the road. They have lost the doubles point in their past two matches, and Head Coach Pete Kirkwood has deemed it an aspect of the team’s play that needs improvement. However, the Gauchos have been playing well as of late, winning five of its past seven matches.

The Gauchos currently sit in fourth place in the Big West Conference, with one conference game remaining against Long Beach State (12-8, 4-1 Big West). Long Beach only holds a half game lead over Santa Barbara.

The UCSB women’s tennis team will face off against Gonzaga on Thursday, April 12 at 1 p.m.