No. 9-Seed UCLA Begins Title Run This Friday
May 10, 2004
NCAA Championships Begin This Friday . . .
The No. 8-ranked UCLA women's tennis team needs two victories this week in NCAA Regional play to earn a spot in the 16-team NCAA Championships, May 20-23 in Athens, Ga. The Bruins, seeded ninth, will host a four-team regional beginning this Friday at the Los Angeles Tennis Center. Action gets underway with BYU (22-5) taking on Pepperdine (14-9) at 10:00 a.m. That will be immediately followed by UCLA (16-7) facing Long Beach State (18-8) at 1:00 p.m. Friday's winners will meet in the regional final on Saturday at 3:00 p.m. Tickets are $6 (adults) and $4 (youth/students). Live scoring will be available at -- www.uclabruins.com.
NCAA Top-16 Seeds1. Florida2. Stanford3. Vanderbilt4. Washington5. Clemson6. Georgia7. Duke8. USC9. UCLA10. Northwestern11. California12. Texas A&M13. Texas14. North Carolina15. Kentucky16. Tulane
Bruins Selected for NCAA Individual Championships . . .
Daniela Bercek and Jackie Carleton were both awarded at-large selections to compete in the NCAA Singles Championships, May 24-29. Bercek also received an at-large selection with partner Lauren Fisher in the NCAA Doubles Championships. Carleton and Feriel Esseghir are the first alternates and will also likely get into the doubles draw.
Bercek, Carleton Named All-Pac-10 . . .
Daniela Bercek and Jackie Carleton both earned second-team All-Pac-10 honors last week following a vote of Conference coaches. Bercek was also named Pac-10 Freshman of the Year after posting a 21-5 overall singles record. Carleton, a sophomore, was also named second-team All-Pac-10 as a freshman in 2003.
UCLA vs. the Regional Field . . .
Pepperdine is the only team out of the three that UCLA faced during the regular season. The Bruins won both meetings, taking a 5-2 decision at Pepperdine on Feb. 24 and winning 6-1 at UCLA on Apr. 7. UCLA's all-time record against Pepperdine, Long Beach State and BYU is a combined 69-14.
A Look Ahead . . .
Should the Bruins win both matches this week and advance to Georgia, UCLA could find itself in a potential round of 16 matchup against eighth-seeded USC. The Women of Troy won both meetings during the regular season, taking a 4-3 decision at USC back on Jan. 30 and a 5-2 victory on Mar. 3 at the LATC. If the Bruins were win their round of 16 match, top-seeded and undefeated Florida would likely await them in the quarterfinals.
UCLA in the Rankings . . .
For the third week in a row, UCLA checked in at No. 8 in the national rankings released on May 3. Individually, sophomore Jackie Carleton leads the list of Bruin players ranked in singles, checking in at No. 18. She is followed by No. 31 Daniela Bercek. The Bruins have three teams ranked in doubles, including No. 22 Carleton/Lauren Fisher, No. 23 Bercek/Fisher and No. 43 Carleton/Feriel Esseghir.
Top-25 Team (May 3)1. Stanford2. Florida3. Vanderbilt4. Duke5. Georgia6. USC7. Clemson8. UCLA9. Northwestern10. Washington11. Tulane12. Texas13. Texas A&M14. California15. North Carolina16. Fresno State17. Kentucky18. BYU19. LSU20. Oklahoma21. Indiana22. Illinois23. Miami24. Tennessee25. TCU
UCLA Against the NCAA Tournament Field . . .
UCLA owns a 12-7 overall record against the 63 other teams competing in the NCAA Championships. The 12 victories have come against Arizona State (2), Cal (2), Pepperdine (2), North Carolina, Fresno State, Arizona, Oregon, Miami and Washington. The Bruins losses have come against Stanford (3), USC (2), Vanderbilt and Texas.
Bruins Finish Third in Pac-10 Standings . . .
With a 6-2 record, UCLA finished in third place behind Stanford and USC in the final Pac-10 standings. The Bruins' only losses were to both those teams, as UCLA posted victories over Cal, Washington, Arizona, Arizona State, Oregon and Washington State.
Head Coach Stella Sampras Webster . . .
Stella Sampras Webster is in her eighth season as the head coach of the UCLA women's tennis program with a career record of 128-76 (.627). In her first seven seasons at UCLA, Sampras Webster guided the Bruins to six top-10 finishes at the NCAA Championships, including four top-5 showings (1997, 2000 2002 and 2003). In addition, UCLA has reached the NCAA Quarterfinals three out of the last four years (2000, 2002 and 2003). Under her tutelage, the Bruins have finished in the top-10 nationally, six out of seven years. In 2000, Sampras Webster was named the ITA West Region Coach of the Year. A 1991 graduate of UCLA with a degree in Psychology, Sampras Webster enjoyed a successful four-year career as a Bruin player from 1987-91 and competed on the pro circuit for one year. An NCAA Doubles Champion as a freshman in 1988 with Allyson Cooper, Sampras Webster was also the NCAA doubles runner-up as a senior in 1991 with Kimberly Po. She is one of only five four-time All-Americans in UCLA women's tennis history.