Nora Gaal Grabs Lone Victory as Cougars Fall to No. 7 UCLA

April 10, 2004

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - The No. 61 Washington State Cougar tennis team dropped its sixth-straight loss in Pac-10 play against the No. 7 UCLA Bruins Saturday at the Los Angeles Tennis Center. The final score was 6-1. The Cougars (5-14, 1-6 Pac-10) have faced ranked opponents in 17 of their 19 dual matches.

Gaal handled UCLA's Feriel Esseghir in straight sets, 6-0, 6-4, to post win number 17 on the season. Gaal has a chance to match her win total from last season next week against Washington.

'Nora's fight and belief on the court is something the team can learn from,' Washington State Head Coach Lisa Hart said.

The Bruins boasted two ranked players in singles and one ranked team in doubles to help outscore the Cougars.

The doubles point was captured by the Bruins as the Cougars could not find a victory. In the No. 1 position Chris Martinez/Orsolya Sallai fell to Daniela Bercek/Lauren Fisher, 8-1. The No. 26-ranked Bruin duo of Feriel Esseghir/Jackie Carleton took down Cougars Lorena Arias/Zsofia Fodor, 8-2. In the No. 3 doubles slot Gaal/Amy Toth fell to Laura Gordon/Sarah Gregg, 8-3.

In No. 1 singles Arias could not find success against No. 52 Bercek as the Cougar lost, 6-3, 6-4. Sallai took her opponent, No. 16 Carleton, into three sets before losing 7-6, 1-6, 6-2, in the No. 2 position.

The bottom part of the line-up offered the Cougars no relief. After earning a victory one day prior against USC, Martinez could not make it two in a row as she was defeated by Gregg, 6-2, 2-6, 6-3. Toth lost her match at No. 5 singles in straight sets to Gordon, 6-0, 6-2. Rounding out the Cougar six was freshman Nelly Dvnornicka who fell to UCLA's Nina Yaftali in a hard fought three set match, 7-6, 6-2, 7-6.

'We played better today than we have all year,' said Hart. 'I'm so proud of the way we competed and put ourselves in a position to win.'

The Cougars will face cross-state rival and No. 6 Washington, April 16 at the Stadium Way Tennis Center to round out regular season dual match play.

WSU ResultsDoublesDaniela Bercek/Lauren Fisher def. Chris Martinez/ Orsolya Sallai (WSU), 8-1Jackie Carleton/Feriel Esseghir def. Lorena Arias/Zsofia Fodor (WSU), 8-2Laura Gordon/Sarah Gregg def. Nora Gaal/Amy Toth (WSU), 8-3

SinglesBercek def. Arias (WSU), 6-3, 6-4Carleton def. Sallai (WSU), 7-6, 1-6, 6-2Gaal (WSU) def. Esseghir, 6-0, 6-4Gregg def. Martinez (WSU), 6-2, 2-6, 6-3Gordon def. Toth (WSU), 6-0, 6-2Nina Yaftali def. Nelly Dvornicka (WSU), 7-6, 6-2, 7-6

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