California Golden Bears (20-4, 10-0 in the Pac-12) vs. Stanford Cardinal (18-2, 8-2 in the Pac-12)
When: 9 AM PT
Online stream and score: NCAA.com
Game updates: Twitter (@CalWomensTennis)
UPDATE: Start is delayed due to the move to playing indoors because of rain. This also means no streams.
Winner of 14 straight match winning streak, the Golden Bears are on a roll heading to this morning's Round of 16 showdown with rival Stanfurd. When the Golden Bears faced Stanfurd down at the Farm in the last match of the Pac-12 season, the Bears was playing that match with plenty of pressure as the Pac-12 title was on the line ('Furd could have won it had they beaten the Bears and got UCLA to slip). The Bears answered back and upset then higher ranked 'Furd 6-1 to complete a perfect run through the regular season (10-0) and win their first Pac-# title in school history.
On the other hand, the current 14 match winning streak started after a match in Berkeley between the Bears and these very same 'Furds. 'Furd were able to beat the Bears 5-2 in the non-conference match on March 8th.
The third meeting of the two teams are in today's NCAA Quarterfinals with even more at the stake. While each school had defeated the other on the opposite's home court, this meet will take place on a neutral site (the rest of the NCAA tennis for both the women and the men are hosted by University of Georgia).
While the Bears are the higher seed (6th) vs. 'Furd (11th after dropping their regular season finale to the Bears), I would not be surprised if the Bears are embracing a bit of an underdog role heading into today's match. Leland Stanford Junior University are the defending NCAA champs in Women's Tennis, winning 17 of the 32 NCAA titles in history. They have won many championships being the underdog in recent history, so they have mastered the art of peaking at the right time. The closest that the Bears have come to the NCAA title is the championship game in both 2008 and 2009.
The Golden Bears' success this year comes from their depth and dependability in winning courts 4-6.
- Senior Anett Schutting (27-11 record) has Cal’s top singles ranking at 18th
- Junior Zsofi Susanyi (24-9) is ranked No. 23
- Sophomore Lynn Chi (33-9) – the April 8 Pac-12 Player of the Week – is ranked 24th; she added two wins in Cal’s NCAA first- and second-round victories
- Freshman Denise Starr (21-10) is No. 30 this week
- Freshman Maegan Manasse (33-6) is ranked 62nd; she also added two wins in Cal’s recent NCAA postseason victories
- Ranked 87th, sophomore Klara Fabikova – the April 1 Pac-12 Player of the Week – has a record of 33-10, including a win in Cal’s second-round victory over Pepperdine
The typical lineup sees freshman Denise Starr in the No.1 match. Bears then use Susanyi, Schutting, Chi, Fabikova, and another freshman in Manasse in courts 2-6.
- The tandem of Chi and Schutting (16-7) is ranked No. 41 this week; the Bears won both their matches in Cal’s recent NCAA tournament wins
- The pair of Manasse and Starr (11-1) is ranked 47th in doubles; the freshmen picked up a win against Pepperdine
- The tandem of senior Kelly Chui and Fabikova has a 7-1 record
This was the result from the Bears' win at Stanfurd:
No. 10 California (18-4, 10-0 Pac-12) defeated No. 5 Stanford (16-2, 8-2) - 6-1
April 19, in Stanford, Calif.
Taube Family Tennis Stadium
1) No. 70 Lynn Chi/Anett Schutting (Cal) d. No. 9 Kristie Ahn/Carol Zhao (Stanford) 8-6
2) No. 37 Taylor Davidson/Ellen Tsay (Stanford) vs. No. 35 Maegan Manasse/Denise Starr (Cal) abandoned
3) Kelly Chui/Klara Fabikova (Cal) d. Caroline Doyle/Krista Hardebeck (Stanford) 8-3
Order of Finish: 3, 1
1) No. 4 Kristie Ahn (Stanford) d. No. 32 Denise Starr (Cal) 6-3, 6-2
2) No. 21 Zsofi Susanyi (Cal) d. No. 44 Krista Hardebeck (Stanford) 4-6, 7-6 (2), 6-4
3) No. 23 Anett Schutting (Cal) d. No. 19 Carol Zhao (Stanford) 6-3, 7-6 (2)
4) No. 28 Lynn Chi (Cal) d. No. 34 Taylor Davidson (Stanford) 2-6, 6-2, 6-4
5) Klara Fabikova (Cal) d. No. 41 Ellen Tsay (Stanford) 6-3, 6-1
6) No. 67 Maegan Manasse (Cal) d. No. 39 Caroline Doyle (Stanford) 4-6, 6-4, 6-2
Order of Finish 1, 5, 3, 6, 4, 2
The No.1 single player for 'Furd in Kristie Ahn is as close to an automatic win as it goes. The Bears were able to apply the pressure by capturing the Doubles point and then overcome losing the first set in 4 of the 6 matches to not just beat 'Furd but win in every match other than No.1.
Similar to the Bears, 'Furd features a lineup that include both senior and experience and freshman and youth. Ahn is a senior, but they also have three freshmen in Davidson, Doyle, and Zhao in their regular lineup. Those 3 obviously were not a part of the NCAA winning run last year.
This should be a good match. Many are calling this the best matchup in the Round of 16th. Go Bears in ending the Stanfurd tyranny at the top of collegiate women's tennis.
ROLL ON YOU BEARS!