Cougars Open Pac-12 Play Friday against No. 6 UCLA
THIS WEEK (March 4, 2021): The No. 47 Washington State Cougars (5-4) open Pac-12 Conference play this weekend when they host No. 6 UCLA Friday and No. 16 USC Sunday. Friday's match against the Bruins is schedule for a 1:30 p.m. start at the WSU Outdoor Tennis Courts, while Sunday's contest against the Trojans is set for 11 a.m. at the Simmelink Tennis Courts at Hollingbery Fieldhouse. The last time the Cougars faced UCLA in Pullman, WSU came away with a 4-2 victory of the 10th-ranked Bruins, during the 2019 season, the highest-ranked win in school history.
FOLLOW LIVE: Washington State Athletics is committed to providing a safe environment for its staff, coaches and student-athletes, as well as the Pullman community, during the 2021 tennis season. Under current health protocols, only player/coach guests are permitted to attend Cougar Tennis home events. Live streaming for both matches is available HERE, and live scoring is available HERE.
LAST TIME OUT: The Cougars improved its winning streak over Idaho to 24 with a 6-1 victory over the Vandals last Friday in Pullman.
SCOUTING UCLA: UCLA enters the weekend with a 6-2 record and a No. 6 national ranking. Five of the Bruins wins have come against Top 25 teams, including a 6-1 victory over current No. 12 USC in their last outing. The Bruins currently have five players ranked in singles, led by No. 7 Abbey Forbes and No. 9 Elysia Bolton. UCLA's duo of Bolton and Jada Hart are currently the nation's top-ranked doubles team.
SCOUTING USC: The Trojans enter the weekend with a 6-3 record and a No. 16 national ranking. USC, which plays Friday against Washington before heading to Pullman, is coming off a 6-1 victory over No. 13 Oklahoma State in its last match. The Trojans boast three players currently ranked by the ITA, led by No. 22 Angela Kulikov. Kulikov and Eryn Cayetano are currently ranked No. 12 in doubles. The Cougars' last victory over USC came during the 2018 season, a 4-1 win in Los Angeles.
UP NEXT: Washington State continues its season-long, eight-match homestand when it hosts the Arizona schools. The Cougars will face No. 24 Arizona State, Friday, March 12 at 1:30 p.m. and then Arizona, Sunday, March 14 at 1 p.m.
- Washington State Tennis enters this week ranked No. 47 by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association.
- Junior Savanna Ly-Nguyen is off to a fast start for the 2021 season, posting a 7-0 singles record entering the weekend.
- Senior Melisa Ates was named Pac-12 Women's Tennis Player of the Week, for the week of Feb. 8-14).
- Senior Melisa Ates has moved into fifth place on WSU's all-time singles wins list with 95. Next up on the list is Aneta Miksovska at No. 4 with 98 wins.
- Michaela Bayerlova entered the 2021 season with a No. 55 ranking the preseason poll, the most recent singles poll available. The senior is also looking for her third-straight NCAA Singles Championship appearance.
ROSTER BREAKDOWN: For the 2020-21 season the Cougars will have two new players to accompany the six returners. The returning roster consists of seniors Melisa Ates and Michaela Bayerlova, juniors Yang Lee, Savanna Ly-Nguyen and Hikaru Sato, along with freshmen Maddie Egan and Pang Jittakoat. Newcomers include freshmen Hania Abouelsaad and Fifa Kumhom.
COACH HART: Lisa Hart is in her 18th season as the head coach at Washington State. Hart has accumulated a 237-195 (.549) record while leading the Cougars, the most coaching wins in program history.