No. 11 Cal Travels To ITA Indoor Team Championships
Jan. 31, 2007
WHAT'S AHEAD: The No. 11 California women's tennis team heads to Madison, Wis. this weekend for the ITA Indoor Team Championships, which take place from Thursday, Feb. 1 through Sunday, Feb. 4. Sixteen of the top programs in the country will compete in the nation's only indoor team tennis championship. This is the 20th year of the annual event. Fourteen of this week's participants were ranked inside the top 17 in the Fila Collegiate Tennis Rankings. The Golden Bears will be participating in the tournament for the 13th time. They currently post a record of 21-18 in their previous 12 outings. Within those appearances, Cal has reached the final once, in 2000. Only three teams have competed in this tournament more than Cal (Stanford 19, UCLA 15, Pepperdine 13). Through three matches so far in the dual season, the Bears are undefeated in singles and have only lost one doubles match
LAST YEAR IN THE INDOOR CHAMPIONSHIPS: Cal went 2-1 in last year's Indoor Championships. On the first day of competition, the Bears upset then-No. 5 Northwestern, 5-2. Cal clinched the doubles point and went on to tally four singles victories. The next day, Cal fell to then-No. 13 Duke, 4-3, in the quarterfinals. Cal dropped the doubles point, but recorded three singles victories by Marion Ravelojaona, Claire Ilcinkas and Jessica Shu. On day three, Cal defeated then-ninth-ranked Miami in the consolation quarterfinals. Cal started off strong winning the doubles point, and then won three victories on the singles court. Ravelojaona clinched the win for the Bears when she defeated Patricia Starzyk, 4-6, 6-2, 6-4.
BEARS TAKE TWO IN SAN DIEGO: Cal swept No. 57 San Diego and No. 39 San Diego State last weekend in San Diego. Against the Toreros, senior Zsuzsanna Fodor was put to the test against junior Monica Wiesener. After winning the first set, 6-3, Fodor lost a close second set, 6-7. The reigning Pac-10 singles champion would win the third set, 8-6, and also win her first career match breaker (10-5). The rest of the Cal players won their matches decisively, all in straight sets. No. 3 Susie Babos defeated junior Helene Lindstrand, 6-2, 6-3. Freshman Nina Henkel, after winning the first set of her match against freshman Samantha Mouly, 6-3, earned the match victory when Mouly got injured in the second set. The next morning at SDSU, Cal won all six singles matches in straight sets. No. 14 Henkel and No. 34 Marion Ravelojaona each won their matches by the score of 6-0, 6-0. No. 3 Susie Babos defeated the lone ranked player for the Aztecs, No. 69 Eliska Krausova, 6-1, 6-3. In both matches, the highly-ranked doubles tandems of No. 2 Babos and Fodor and No. 12 Henkel and sophomore Daron Moore each picked up two doubles wins.
DOMINANT DOUBLES: One of the things head coach Jan Brogan really wanted to improve this season was the overall team performance in doubles. Through three matches thus far, Cal has only lost one of the nine doubles matches it's competed in. The Bears also have two doubles teams ranked in the top 15 - No. 2 Susie Babos/Zsuzsanna Fodor and No. 12 Nina Henkel and Daron Moore. After starting the season with an 8-4 victory over Katrina Bandere and Katrina Zheltova of Sacramento State, Babos and Fodor won both of their doubles matches in San Diego last weekend by the score of 8-2. Babos and Fodor will be looking for more championships this spring after winning the doubles tournaments in the Cal Invitational and the ITA Northwest Regional. Henkel and Moore are 3-0 in doubles in the dual season as well. Their latest win was an 8-5 victory over Alesya Vidov and Ozge Atalay of San Diego State last weekend. After losing in the finals of the Cal Invitational to Babos and Fodor, Henkel and Moore went on to win the doubles tournament in the Saint Mary's Invitational in October.
FANTASTIC FALL: Susie Babos carried her momentum from her NCAA singles title last May into the fall, as she won the All-American Championships in October and the doubles crown in the ITA Northwest Regional with partner senior Zsuzsanna Fodor. In the opening tournament of the fall, the Cal Invitational, Babos also won the singles draw and the doubles draw with Fodor. It was a successful fall season all around for the Bears. Freshman Nina Henkel made her presence felt when she won the ITA Northwest Regional singles tournament in October, proving why she was one of the best recruits in the country.
HENKEL'S ON HER WAY: It was an impressive fall season for freshman and 14th-ranked Nina Henkel. The winner of the ITA Northwest Regional, Henkel is starting to make a name for herself, as she posted a fall record of 11-2, Perhaps her most impressive win thus far was upsetting Theresa Logar of Stanford in the semifinals of the regional. Logar, the No. 1 seed in the tournament and ranked No. 3 in the ITA preseason rankings, had a 5-2 lead in the third set, but could not hold off Henkel, as she climbed back to beat Logar, 6-4, 2-6, 7-5. In the final, Henkel knocked off another Cardinal, Jessica Nguyen, to win the singles title with a 7-5, 6-4 victory. So far this spring, Henkel is 3-0 in doubles with partner Daron Moore and Henkel has compiled a singles record of 3-0.
FODOR PAC-10 SINGLES CHAMPION: The impressive string of championships won by Cal in 2006 includes the Pac-10 Singles title by Zsuzsanna Fodor, as she defeated then-No. 10 ranked Amanda Fink of USC to claim the title. Fodor, a 2006 All-American along with Susie Babos, was also named the Pac-10 Player of the Year last season. She entered postseason play ranked No. 3 by the Fila Collegiate Tennis Rankings.
BABOS NCAA SINGLES CHAMPION: Last May, Susie Babos became the first Golden Bear from the women's team to win the NCAA Singles title, becoming just the fourth international player to ever win the national singles title and the second Bear to advance to the NCAA fi nal since Lisa Albano in 1991. In addition, Babos also was the sixth unseeded player to advance to the NCAA final, sixth sophomore to win the national championship and the 15th Pac-10 NCAA singles champion. She defeated USC's Lindsey Nelson, 6-4, 6-1, in the final. Along the way of winning the national crown, Babos upset the 2005 NCAA champ and No. 4 seed Zuzana Zemenova of Baylor, 6-3, 6-4, in the quarterfinals.
HEAD COACH Jan Brogan:
Head coach Jan Brogan is entering her 29th year at the helm of Cal women's tennis and currently boasts a 518-213 dual-match record. She recorded her 500th-career win in 2005 when Cal defeated Mississippi in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Brogan is just the fourth Cal coach to reach the 500-win plateau. Brogan has molded the Golden Bear program into one of the best in the country, guiding the Bears to 25 NCAA appearances, three AIAW showings, including a trip to the finals in 1982, and 18 Top 10 finishes since 1982. Brogan guided Susie Babos to the NCAA singles championship and Zsuzsanna Fodor to the Pac-10 singles title last year. She has produced a singles national champion, four national champion doubles teams, 58 All-Americans, 17 first team All-Pac-10 selections and five conference player of the year honorees during her career.
ASSOCIATE HEAD COACH Damon Coupe:
Coupe comes to Berkeley after serving as the women's head coach at Santa Clara (2004-06). Before taking the job with the Broncos, he was the men's assistant head coach at Fresno State (2002-04) and the interim head coach at his alma mater, Sacramento State (2002). Coupe is ranked among the top three tennis players at Sacramento State, where he played from 1993-1995. He led Santa Clara to a very successful, record-setting 2004-05 season. Santa Clara finished the campaign with its best record in the history of the program at 16-7, and the squad also was nationally ranked for the first time. While at Fresno State, the Bulldogs advanced to the 2004 NCAA Tournament, after reaching their highest national ranking of 30.