Bears Drop NCAA Doubles Opener To End Season
ORLANDO, Fla. – The season came to an end for the California women's tennis program when Haley Giavara and Valentina Ivanov fell to Virginia's 21st-ranked Rosie Johanson and Emma Navarro, 4-6, 7-6(2), 10-7, in the NCAA Doubles Championship opening round on Monday. The two Golden Bears closed the 2021 season with a 13-8 record.
Ivanov and Giavara came out strong in the first set, taking a 5-1 lead over the Cavaliers at the USTA National Campus. A 3-2 edge in break points propelled the Bears to capture the set, 6-4.
The second set went back and forth, with the Cal duo converting another break point to take a 5-4 advantage. But the UVa pair tied the set, 6-6, to force a tiebreak that the Cavaliers won, 7-2, to take the set. The teams then played a 10-point tiebreak that the Virginia pair won to end the match.
"This is the first time we played in this tournament, so we have a lot to learn," Giavara said. "But it was a lot of fun to be out here and represent Cal."
With the cancellation of the 2020 postseason due to the pandemic, this year's NCAA team and individual tournaments – including Giavara's singles appearance on Sunday – represented the first postseason experience for the second-year Bears.
"It's definitely been a new environment for me and Haley," Ivanov said. "The Virginia team was great, and they have a great shot at winning this tournament. Haley and I did well out there today. The main thing we take away from this is confidence going into next year."
"This was a great, first NCAA tournament for these two," Cal head coach Amanda Augustus said. "First, we made history in winning our first Pac-12 team championship, and then we reached the NCAA round of 16. We're taking away a lot of excitement from the singles and doubles tournaments as well.
"We have such a young team, with basically everybody back next year along with a couple of new players. Fingers crossed, we're planning on having a full, normal year to work with this team. I just want to acknowledge all the work they did this year and the hard work of associate head coach Zack Warren. We're excited to continue building."
NCAA Doubles Championship
May 24, 2021, in Orlando, Fla.
USTA National Campus
Round of 32
No. 21 Rosie Johanson/Emma Navarro (UVa) def. Haley Giavara/Valentina Ivanov (Cal), 4-6, 7-6(2), 10-7