No. 10 Huskies Face Northwest Foes In First Home Matches

Jan. 26, 2005

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- THIS WEEK: Washington's 10th-ranked women's tennis team makes it 2005 home dual debut by hosting a pair of northwest foes this weekend in crucial tune-ups before heading off to the elite National Team Indoors next weekend. The Huskies (2-0) contend with the Gonzaga Bulldogs (0-0) on Friday, Jan. 28, at 12 p.m. then return Saturday morning to face the Boise State Broncos (0-0) at 11 a.m. Both matches will take place at the Nordstrom Tennis Center.

LAST WEEK: Washington swung into the dual season with a pair of road wins over Utah State and 25th-ranked Brigham Young to pick right up where they left off in 2004. The women swept Utah State, 7-0, without dropping a set in singles or doubles. The Cougars of BYU posed the first real challenge of the year for UW, but after BYU captured the doubles point, the Huskies swept all six singles matches to secure the win. Dea Sumantri and Dinka Hadzic both lost just four games combined in the top two singles spots over the weekend. Freshmen Allison Rainey and Tara Simpson made their dual debuts in impressive fashion, each posting a pair of singles wins.

SCOUTING GONZAGA: The match against the Huskies will be the first of the year for the Bulldogs. Gonzaga is coming off a 11-14 record in 2004 and placed eighth in the West Coast Conference. Senior Angela Fry looks to be Gonzaga's top returning player. Despite their close proximity, the Huskies and Bulldogs have never met in women's tennis before.

SCOUTING BOISE STATE: The Broncos will also be playing their first match of the season when they go up against the Huskies on Saturday. Boise State posted a 14-8 mark last year and wound up tied for fifth in the Western Athletic Conference. Senior Carolina Pongratz led the Broncos with ten wins in the fall season. Alissa Ayling and Anna Curtolo provide additional senior leadership for the squad. Washington holds a 5-1 advantage in the all-time series between the teams.

HUSKIES IN THE RANKINGS: In the first ITA team rankings released January 11, the Huskies debuted at No. 10, one step down from their final 2004 finish of No. 9. Senior Dea Sumantri is the only Husky currently in the singles rankings at No. 13. Sumantri and Dinka Hadzic are the 56th-ranked doubles team in the current poll.

2004 RECAP: The Huskies enjoyed perhaps their most successful season in history last year, coming within mere points of their first ever Final Four appearance. Washington earned their eighth-straight postseason berth and advanced to the NCAA Elite Eight for the second time in four years. UW defeated Fairfield, Oregon and Arizona State to reach the Elite Eight, where they were barely edged, 4-3, by No. 7 Clemson with the final match coming down to a third-set tiebreak. Washington won 21 matches against only six losses, matching an all-time high for victories under head coach Patty McCain. UW was ranked in the top-10 all year, including a high mark of fourth, the highest ranking in school history. In the Pac-10, the Huskies finished 5-3, good for a fourth place finish behind eventual national champion Stanford, USC, and national runner-up UCLA. Junior Dea Sumantri earned her second All-American certificate in singles and finished ranked No. 17. Sumantri also teamed with senior Claire Carter to reach the NCAA doubles quarterfinals and earn All-American certificates. It was the fourth All-American award for Carter, the first Husky to achieve that. For her efforts, Patty McCain earned national acclaim, being named National Coach of the Year.

UP NEXT: The Huskies will participate in the prestigious National Team Indoor Championships next weekend in Madison, Wisconsin, which features 16 of the top teams in the country. The Huskies reached the semifinals of last year's tournament, before losing to eventual champion Stanford. The Cardinal went on to capture the NCAA Championship a few months later. Tournament play begins Thursday, Feb. 3, and concludes on Sunday, Feb. 6 with matches running throughout the day.

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