Cougars Visit Nationally-Ranked Washington and Pepperdine
THIS WEEK (April 15, 2021): The Washington State Cougars (13-11, 4-5) close out their Pac-12 regular season conference schedule when they visit No. 50 Washington Friday afternoon at 1:30 p.m. in Seattle. The Cougars then continue their road trip Sunday when they visit No. 4 Pepperdine at Noon in Malibu, Calif.
FOLLOW LIVE: Live streaming for the Washington match can be found HERE, while the stream for the Pepperdine match is located HERE.
LAST TIME OUT: The Cougars closed out their home schedule by taking a 4-0 decision over Gonzaga Tuesday on Senior Day. Senior Melisa Ates was recognized prior to the match for her contributions to Washington State University both on and off the court.
SCOUTING WASHINGTON: Washington enters the weekend with a 13-6 overall record, 4-5 in Pac-12 play. The Huskies have won their last four matches and earlier this season defeated Washington State, 5-2, in Seattle. Washington leads the all-time series 49-11.
SCOUTING PEPPERDINE: Pepperdine, ranked No. 4 nationally, enters the weekend with a 15-3 record and will host Portland and Gonzaga prior to face Washington State Sunday. The Waves saw their 12-match winning streak snapped Wednesday against No. 6 UCLA. The only previous meeting in the series came in 2014, a 4-1 Pepperdine victory in Pullman.
UP NEXT: Washington State continues its Southern California swing by visiting UC Santa Barbara (Monday) and San Diego (Wednesday) before beginning play at the 2021 Pac-12 Championships in San Diego Friday.
ATES CLOSING IN ON ALL-TIME SINGLES MARK: With her victory over Gonzaga Tuesday, senior Melisa Ates continues to climb up the all-time singles wins list, now with 105. Ates, who now has her sights on the two leaders, Elisabeth Fournier (108) and Liudmila Vasilieva (107). Ates has tied Elizaveta Luzina's all-time mark of 194 combined singles and doubles wins.
LY-NGUYEN NAMED ONE OF 10 FEMALE ARTHUR ASHE JR. SPORTS SCHOLARS: Washington State junior tennis student-athlete Savanna Ly-Nguyen was named one of 10 female student-athletes nationally selected as 2021 Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholars, it was announced in March by Diverse: Issues in Higher Education. The honor recognizes outstanding minority young men and women who have distinguished themselves in their academic and athletic pursuits. The students named 2021 Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholars are students of color who have maintained a cumulative grade-point average of at least 3.5, are at least a sophomore academically, and have been active on their campuses or in their communities.
- Junior Savanna Ly-Nguyen has a team-best 17-2 singles record so far this season. Her .894 winning percentage currently ranks as the fourth-best in single-season history at WSU.
- The Cougars are receiving votes in the most recent ITA Coaches Poll, released Wednesday.
- Michaela Bayerlova is ranked No. 82 in the most recent ITA singles poll. The senior is also looking for her third-straight NCAA Singles Championship appearance.
- Melisa Ates' 28 combined victories this season are a team best.
ROSTER BREAKDOWN: For the 2021 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 sophomores 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 245-202 (.548) record while leading the Cougars, the most coaching wins in program history.