No. 9 Bears Sweep No. 8 Jackets to Advance to NCAA Quarterfinal
May 15, 2009
COLLEGE STATION, Texas -
The No. 9-ranked California women's tennis team (20-4, 7-1 Pac-10) won its season-high ninth consecutive match today in a 5-0 victory over No. 8 Georgia Tech (18-8, 9-2 ACC) in the round of 16 at the 2009 NCAA Division I Women's Tennis Championship at the George P. Mitchell Tennis Center. The eighth-seeded Golden Bears will make their 19th appearance in the national quarterfinals and draw No. 1-ranked and top-seeded Northwestern (28-1, 10-0 Big 10) in a 2 p.m. PT match on Sunday, May 17.
'This team is motivated to be one step better than we were last year and today, the team really played a great match,' said head coach Amanda Augustus. 'I think these women are on a mission and it really showed out there on the courts. We're not looking ahead or looking at rankings. We just have to beat whoever is in front of us until there are no teams left to beat.'
The Bears claimed the first point of the match when the court-three duo of senior Bojana Bobusic and freshman Stephany Chang broke the Yellow Jacket serve to close out a hard fought 8-6 victory over Lynn Blau and Amanda McDowell. Cal won the first doubles match of the day with ease at the top court as No. 7-ranked sophomore Mari Andersson and freshman Jana Juricova ran away with an 8-2 victory against No. 30-ranked Noelle Hickey and Christy Striplin. Georgia Tech fought back to even the score as the 74th-ranked doubles team of Irina Falconi and Sasha Krupina took out No. 35 senior Claire Ilcinkas and sophomore Marina Cossou, 8-4, at court two.
Cal flexed its muscles as singles matches got under way with No. 32-ranked Bobusic giving the Bears a 2-0 lead when she notched a 6-0, 6-3 win against Blau at court five. Bobusic placed a ball to the deep corner of Blau's court to force the Yellow Jacket to play her return into the net to end the match. One court away at No. 4 singles, No. 54-ranked Ilcinkas gave the Bears a comfortable cushion as she pinned up a 6-2, 6-2 win against No. 45 Striplin to put Cal out in front, 3-0.
No. 41 Andersson picked apart No. 61 Hickey at court three to take a 6-3 win in the first set before claiming match point, up 5-4 in the second. Over on the top court, No. 11-ranked Juricova allowed No. 12 Falconi to stay on pace in the second after tacking up a 6-0 win in the first set. There, Juricova also held match point at 5-4 in the second set. Both Andersson and Juricova were up 40-30 in the 10th game of the second set and finished milliseconds apart to give the Bears a 5-0 win. Andersson's slightly earlier win awarded her with the clinching point of the day.
In unfinished matches, No. 26-ranked Cossou split sets with No. 25 Amanda McDowell at court two. Cossou won the first, 6-2, before dropping a 6-3 win to McDowell in the second. At No. 6 singles, Chang fell in the first set tiebreaker but held a 3-1 lead in the second set as her match was suspended.
Next, the Bears will take on Northwestern for the eighth time in school history. The Wildcats won their 11th consecutive conference title this season and enter the NCAA quarterfinals on a 20-match winning streak. Northwestern won the ITA National Team Indoor title in February and looks to avenge a 4-2 quarterfinal loss to the Bears from a year ago. Cal holds a 5-2 edge over the Cats all-time.
No. 9 California 0, No. 8 Georgia Tech 0NCAA Division I Women's Tennis Championship | Round of 16George P. Mitchell Tennis Center | College Station, TexasFriday, May 15, 2009Doubles1. No. 7 Andersson/Juricova (CAL) def. No. 30 Hickey/Striplin (GT) 8-22. No. 74 Falconi/Krupina (GT) def. No. 35 Cossou/Ilcinkas (CAL) 8-43. Bobusic/Chang (CAL) def. Blau/McDowell (GT) 8-6Order of finish: 1, 2, 3* (California wins doubles point)Singles1. No. 11 Jana Juricova (CAL) def. No. 12 Irina Falconi (GT) 6-0, 6-42. No. 26 Marina Cossou (CAL) vs. No. 25 Amanda McDowell (GT) DNF3. No. 41 Mari Andersson (CAL) def. No. 61 Noelle Hickey (GT) 6-3, 6-44. No. 54 Claire Ilcinkas (CAL) def. No. 45 Christy Striplin (GT) 6-2, 6-25. No. 32 Bojana Bobusic (CAL) def. Lynn Blau (GT) 6-0, 6-36. Stephany Chang (CAL) vs. Hillary Davis (GT) DNFOrder of finish: 5, 4, 3*, 1