Dominance At Taube: 10 Years And Counting...
March 8, 2009
Calling it a home-court advantage would be a complete understatement. What the Stanford women's tennis program has accomplished at the Taube Family Tennis Stadium over the last 10 years is simply astonishing.
Believed to be the longest active home winning streak of any intercollegiate sport in NCAA history, Stanford now boasts an eye-popping 142-match winning streak overall in contests played at the Taube Family Tennis Stadium. That's 114 victories in a row during regular-season play, combined with a 28-0 record in NCAA Tournament matches played at home.
And with a thrilling 4-3 win over No.7 California on Mar. 7, 2009, it has now officially been 10 years since Stanford suffered a loss on its home court. That's right, 10 years. The last time the Cardinal lost a match at the Taube Family Tennis Stadium was back on Feb. 27, 1999, when No. 4 California pulled a 5-4 upset.
JUST HOW LONG IS 10 YEARS?
Consider the following when you flash back to 1999:
|Top Movies||Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace, The Sixth Sense, Toy Story 2, The Matrix, American Beauty|
|Top Albums||'Baby One More Time' by Britney Spears, 'Millennium' by Backstreet Boys, 'Come On Over' by Shania Twain, 'NSYNC' by `N Sync, 'Ricky Martin' by Ricky Martin|
|Pro Sports Champs|| Denver Broncos (NFL), New York Yankees (MLB),
San Antonio Spurs (NBA), Dallas Stars (NHL)
|At The Time||
QUIZ TIME: BET YOUR BUDDIES DON'T KNOW THIS...
LOOKING BACK AT THE MILESTONES...
Seemed like just another victory at the time, not the start of an incredible streak that would span a decade. Here's the starting lineup that Stanford head coach Frank Brennan penciled into his scorebook that afternoon:
1) Teryn Ashley (STAN) d. Lindsay Blau (ARIZ) 6-1, 4-6, 6-2
2) Monique Allegre (ARIZ) d. Gabriela Lastra (STAN) 4-6, 6-4, 6-4
3) Lauren Kalvaria (STAN) d. Joanna Buczkowska (ARIZ) 6-2, 7-5
4) Jennifer Heiser (STAN) d. Michelle Gough (ARIZ) 6-4, 6-0
5) Keiko Tokuda (STAN) d. Vanessa Ablel (ARIZ) 6-3, 6-2
6) Sarah Pestieau (STAN) d. Carly Stringer (ARIZ) 7-5, 6-7, 7-6
1) Blau/Allegre (ARIZ) d. Lastra/Kalvaria (STAN) 9-7
2) Ashley/Pestieau (STAN) d. Gough/Abel (ARIZ) 9-8
3) Tokuda/Heiser (STAN) d. Stringer/Marino (ARIZ) 8-5
Regarded as the premier tennis facility in the country, the Taube Family Tennis Stadium has served as a host site to several NCAA Tournament matches during the streak. Fast forward 10 years and nothing has changed. During the winning stretch, the facility has played host to the 2002 and 2006 NCAA Championships. On this date, Stanford blanked Pacific in the first of 28 NCAA Tournament matches played on its home court during the streak.
Despite the nation's No. 1 player, Marissa Irvin, suffering a loss at the No. 1 spot, Stanford cruised to five singles victories and the doubles matches were cancelled because the outcome had already been decided. This would be the final home match played under legendary coach Frank Brennan, who compiled a 510-50 overall record during his time on The Farm and owns the distinction as the program's all-time winningest coach.
Stanford blanked Washington State 7-0 in the first home match played under new head coach Lele Forood, who succeeded Brennan. Eight years later, Forood still has the Cardinal rolling along with five NCAA championships and eight consecutive Pac-10 titles to her credit. Forood entered this season with an unthinkable overall record of 214-10. She was named the 2003 Wilson/ITA National Coach of the Year and is a three-time Pac-10 Coach of the Year recipient.
Hosting the NCAA Championships for the first time since 1997, Stanford notched a 4-1 victory over Florida to claim the national championship on its home court. The victory was well earned for the third-seeded Cardinal, which had to sit through a rain delay of three hours and 10 minutes before competition started shortly after 4 p.m. Erin Burdette's 7-6, 6-2 victory at the No. 4 position sealed the match, as Stanford's senior class of Lauren Kalvaria, Gabriela Lastra and Keiko Tokuda wrapped up their collegiate careers with a 116-4 record and three NCAA championships.
Stanford's 7-0 rout of TCU turned out to be win No. 65 during the home winning streak but it also represented the first victory of another improbable stretch. After falling to host Florida 4-3 in the 2003 NCAA Championship, Stanford opened its 2004 campaign with a ho-hum shutout victory over the Horned Frogs. And 88 consecutive wins would follow, giving the Cardinal an 89-match winning streak that spanned three seasons and produced three more NCAA championships.
For the second time during the home winning streak, Stanford won the NCAA championship on its home court. Appearing in the national championship match for the 20th time in the 25-year history of the event, Stanford captured its 15th team title in a tournament that was pushed back constantly by rainy weather. After winning the doubles point, Celia Durkin and Jessica Nguyen cruised to straight-set wins at the Nos. 5 and 6 positions of the singles lineup. Theresa Logar provided the clincher on court three, winning easily 6-0, 6-3.
Someone in the stands on this Saturday afternoon had to be asking themselves the following question: 'is the scoreboard malfunctioning?' That's because for the first time in seven years the number '3' was appearing in the opponent's score column. Stanford had not surrendered three points to an opponent in a home match since Apr. 21, 2000, when the Cardinal downed USC 6-3. Fast forward to this date against UCLA, and Stanford was actually trailing 3-2 while the match was in the hands of Anne Yelsey and Lindsay Burdette. Both rallied to victories, with Yelsey beating Tracy Lin 6-2, 6-7, 7-6 at the No. 2 spot while Burdette rallied past Elizabeth Lumpkin 2-6, 7-6, 6-1 on court six.
A thriller in every sense of the word. California entered this match ranked No. 7, six spots ahead of No. 13 Stanford. The Golden Bears are a team on the rise, and this one had all the makings of a classic and potential upset. Sure enough, California captured the doubles point and two of the next three singles matches to take a 3-1 lead and silence the Stanford fans. Three matches remained and the situation was the same in all three: a Stanford win in the first set before California bounced back in the second. That's when the comeback started. Freshman Veronica Li picked up her biggest win of the year on court five, sophomore Hilary Barte evened the match at 3-3 with a win at the No. 1 spot and senior Jessica Nguyen turned a 5-3 deficit in the third set into a 7-5 victory to secure the 4-3 Stanford win and keep the streak alive.
Editorial assistance provided by Elizabeth Clair