For the second straight year, Cal Women's Tennis has players playing on the very last day of the season (after yet another disappointing early exit in the Round of 16th in team play). You know that the Bears only have the 3rd seed and ranking as a team this year behind plenty of strong individual (singles) and pair (doubles) play.
After Lynn Chi made a run to the singles final last year, junior Klara Fabikova and senior Zsofi Susanyi are trying to bring home the 6th NCAA women's doubles title back to Berkeley, and for the first time since 2009.
Here is the full list:
|1997-98||Amanda Augustus/Amy Jensen||Women's Tennis|
|1998-99||Amanda Augustus/Amy Jensen||Women's Tennis|
|1999-00||Claire Curran/Amy Jensen||Women's Tennis|
|2002-03||Raquel Kops-Jones/Christina Fusano||Women's Tennis|
|2008-09||Mari Andersson/Jana Juricova||Women's Tennis|
Yes, current Cal head coach Amanda Augustus has done this twice and will no doubt offer some invaluable experiences.
California's Klara Fabikova/Zsofi Susanyi defeated Florida's Brooke Austin/Kourtney Keegan 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 #NCAAMWT pic.twitter.com/hvyVLXN1PG— NCAA Tennis 2015 (@NCAATennis2015) May 24, 2015
The Cal pair, ranked 5th in the country, have made it to the finals the hard way, dropping the first set not just in the semifinals but also in the opening round of 32 and the second round (round of 16). Even in the semifinals, the Cal team has to fight back from a 4-1 deficit in the deciding 3rd set to win 5 straight games to earn their berth in the final. What it means is that you should never count them out.
Klara Fabikova and Zsofi Susanyi talk about their huge comeback against Florida #NCAAMWT pic.twitter.com/nEyvjk8wXO— NCAA Tennis 2015 (@NCAATennis2015) May 24, 2015
Standing between us and another national championship is a daunting pair from Alabama in top overall seed in Maya Jansen and Erin Routliffe.
Maya Jansen and Erin Routliffe talk about their win today #NCAAMWT pic.twitter.com/ST23SG0cpQ— NCAA Tennis 2015 (@NCAATennis2015) May 24, 2015
Similar to the Bears, the Bama pair had to come back from behind for 3 straight matches. In the semifinals, this pair were able to bounce back from dropping the first set 7-5 to win 6-3, 6-0 over Stanford's Doyle/Tsay (by the way, Doyle/Tsay were able to beat Fabikova/Susanyi in the key doubles match during the team round). So their path has been very similar to that of Fabikova/Susanyi, and they have also demonstrated their resilience.
Nevertheless, this pair is the reigning defending champs (Alabama tennis' first national title) and the top overall seed - the latter doesn't really mean that much given how the top seed are all knocked out in the singles and men's doubles.
NCAA has a live feed with commentaries for the NCAA singles (it switch back and forth between the men and the women). The link to that is here. The singles started at 10 PM PT.
The doubles are schedule to start after the singles. At worst, a commentary-less video stream will be available via the host Baylor. That can be found here.
The Alabama Women's Tennis twitter does believe the match will be broadcasted with commentary via NCAA.com.
Today's title match will follow the 12pm singles final - Erin/Maya's match will be broadcast live w/ commentary here: http://t.co/RZb5oIkyrd— UA Women's Tennis (@AlabamaWTN) May 25, 2015
Update: Due to rain, the singles matches have moved indoor.