No. 17 Sun Devils Swept by No. 11 Bruins
Feb. 25, 2006
Tempe, Ariz. - The No. 17 Arizona State Sun Devils could not keep pace with the No. 11 UCLA Bruins and fell in a 7-0 sweep at the Whiteman Center in Tempe. The Sun Devils lost their second straight match, dropping them to 0-2 in the Pac-10 and 6-2 overall. It was just the third time the Sun Devils had been swept in their last 27 matches (the other two times were both at the hands of No. 1 Stanford last year).
Things looked up for the Devils in the early goings of the doubles competition, as No. 22-ranked Kady Pooler (Laguna Niguel, Calif.) and Roxanne Clarke (Cape Town, South Africa) continued their tear. Winning their fifth straight match, the tandem defeated UCLA's pair of Laura Gordon and Anna-Viktoria Lind, 8-6. The Devils came out firing on all cylinders, jumping out to a 4-0 lead in the pro-set. However, the Bruins were able to battle back, tying the set before taking a 6-5 lead. Facing a 40-love hole, ASU battled back and won the game in the deuce, shifting the momentum in their favor. Leading 7-5 and with the advantage in the deuce, Pooler put the finishing touch on the match as she charged the net and spiked the ball in front of the Bruins' players, sending the ball careening onto the running track of the neighboring Sun Angel Stadium and giving the Devils a doubles win.
However, the devils had a rough go of it in the other two spots, as Rebecca Rankin (Purley, England) and Laila Abdala (San Diego, Calif.) fell, 8-5, to UCLA's Ashley Joelson and Tracy Lin. Falling into a 6-2 hole, the Devils were unable to recover. The doubles point would ultimately be decided in the two spot, as Sabrina Capannolo (Las Vegas, Nev.) and Jessica Leitch (Dallas, Texas) fell to UCLA's Alex McGoodwin and Elizabeth Lumpkin, 8-5, earning the Bruins a point in the match. It was a close match early, but the Bruins distanced themselves with three-straight wins to take a 6-3 lead from which the Devils would never recover. It was only the second time this season that the Devils failed to win the doubles point.
The Sun Devils continued their struggles in singles play as UCLA won in straight sets in all six positions. In the number-one spot, No. 65 Capannolo fell to No. 33 Gordon, 7-6 (0), 6-1. The two traded games throughout the first set, but Capannolo was unable to finish ahead 6-5, allowing Gordon to force the set tiebreaker, which she won 7-0. No. 93 Kady Pooler faced No. 79 Lin in the second spot, but was unable to keep up, falling 6-3, 6-2. No. 68 McGoodwin knocked off ASU's Clarke in the number three position. After quickly falling in the first set (6-1), Clarke stormed back from a 3-0 deficit in the second set to force a tiebreaker, but lost the match after falling 7-2.
The bottom half of the order fared no better for the Devils, as ASU was unable to match up against the Bruins. No. 100 Joelson defeated ASU's No. 50 Rankin (6-4, 6-4) in the four spot and Jessica Leitch was unable to keep up with Elizabeth Lumpkin, losing in the fifth hole (6-3, 6-3). UCLA's Lind defeated Abdala to round out the match, winning 6-3, 6-1.
The Sun Devils finished their home stand at 7-2 and will travel on the road to northern California next weekend for a pair of Pac-10 matches, continuing a span of five matches in 12 days. They take on the No. 1-ranked Stanford Cardinal on March 3 and No. 9 California on March 4. The Sun Devils return home two days later with a non-conference tilt against the No. 21 Wake Forest Demon Deacons, beginning at 1:30 pm MST from the Whiteman Center in Tempe.