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Cougars Ready for Pac-12 Championship

Apr 19, 2022

THIS WEEK (April 19, 2022): The Washington State Women's Tennis team (7-14, 2-8) begins play at the 2022 Pac-12 Championship Wednesday, April 20 against Washington at Noon at the Ojai Valley Tennis Club. The match marks the second time in five days these two teams will meet, with the Cougars posting a 4-3 victory over the No. 32 Huskies last Friday in Pullman. WSU enters the tournament as the No. 10 seed while Washington earned the No. 7 seed.
 
2022 PAC-12 CHAMPIONSHIP: The 2022 Pac-12 Championships will be played April 20-23 at the Ojai Valley Tennis Club, with Saturday's final being held at Libbey Park in Ojai, Calif. California enters as the No. 1 seed after winning the regular-season title with a 5-2 win over Stanford last weekend. Cal will face the winner of the Utah/Arizona match. UCLA begins as the No. 2 seed and will face the winner of the WSU-Washington match in a Thursday quarterfinal. Stanford is the No. 3 seed and faces the winner of Oregon/Colorado while No. 4 USC and No. 5 Arizona State face off in a quarterfinal match Thursday.
 
SCOUTING WASHINGTON: Washington enters the match with a 13-10 overall record, 4-6 in Pac-12 play, and a No. 32 national ranking. The Huskies have dropped their last seven matches, including a 4-3 loss to WSU last Friday, after winning their previous six. Washington is led by No. 1 player Vanessa Wong, who is ranked No. 101 nationally, while the duo of Wong and former Cougar Hikaru Sato are ranked No. 85 in doubles. Washington holds the all-time series lead at 50-12.
 
LAST TIME OUT: WSU picked up its second Pac-12 win of the season with a 4-3 victory over No. 32 Washington. Sophomore Fifa Kumhom rallied from a set down to win 3-6, 6-2, 6-0 at No. 5 single sin the deciding match. It marked the first victory by WSU in the series since the 2014 season.
 
COUGARS IN THE RANKINGS: Fifth-year senior Michaela Bayerlova took a huge jump in the singles rankings as she moved from No. 71 to No. 41, up 30 spots. That is thanks to wins over No. 92 Haley Giavara and No. 10 Connie Ma two weeks ago. For the first time this season, the duo of Bayerlova and freshman Maxine Murphy enter the doubles rankings at No. 57.
 
NET NOTES:

  • Fifth-year senior Michaela Bayerlova is 17-2 on the season, giving her 90 career victories, tied for No. 7 on WSU's all-time list and two wins shy of No. 6.
  • Bayerlova rose 30 spots in the ITA National Rankings to No. 41 last week. Over the last two weeks, Bayerlova's ranking has increased 50 spots from No. 91 to her current ranking of 41.
  • With her victory over Washington, senior Savanna Ly-Nguyen posted her 21st singles win of the season. It marks the first time she has reached 20-plus wins in a season in her career.

 
BAYERLOVA TOP THREE COLLEGIANS IN WORLD RANKING: Washington State fifth-year senior Michaela Bayerlova entered this week with a WTA ranking of 512, a career-high. That places her third among current collegians in the world rankings. Virginia sophomore Emma Navarro leads all NCAA women tennis players with a ranking of 222. Texas sophomore Peyton Stearns is next at No. 365 followed by Bayerlova.
 
ROSTER BREAKDOWN: For the 2021-22 season the Cougars will have four new players to accompany the four returners. The returning roster consists of fifth-year senior Michaela Bayerlova, seniors Yang Lee and Savanna Ly-Nguyen, sophomore Fifa Kumhom and freshmen Hania Abouelsaad, Stefaniia Mikhailova, Maxine Murphy and Elyse Tse.
 
HEAD COACH RAQUEL ATAWO: Raquel Atawo begins her first season as head coach of the Cougars after being named to the position July 2, 2021. Atawo arrived in Pullman having spent last season as the assistant coach at Auburn and prior to that, spent 15 years on the WTA Tour, where she reached at No. 10 world ranking in doubles..
 
FOLLOW THE COUGARS: Keep up with Washington State tennis by following @WSUCougarTennis on Twitter, @wsucougartennis on Instagram, and Washington State Cougar Tennis on Facebook.