This Week for the Wildcats: The No. 42 Arizona women’s tennis team will take a break from Pac-10 opponents this weekend when it hosts No. 47 Tulsa and No. 49 New Mexico at the LaNelle Robson Tennis Center. The Wildcats (5-5, 2-0) will face the Golden Hurricane at 2 p.m. on Friday, March 3. Arizona will take on the Lobos at 10 a.m. on Saturday, March 4.
Last week: The Wildcats suffered two straight losses over the weekend. Arizona fell to No. 7 California 6-1 on Friday. The Golden Bears won the doubles point and took five of the six singles matches to get the win. Arizona’s one point came from Danielle Steinberg’s straight set, upset win over No. 9 Zsuzsanna Fodor, 6-1, 7-6(0). On Saturday, The Wildcats had similar results against No. 1 Stanford. The Cardinal got off to a fast start by winning the doubles point, and the Wildcats were again only able to get one win in singles. Tina Razloznik got the point for Arizona in the No. 6 spot against Lejla Hodzic, 6-2, 6-3.
Against Tulsa: This is the third all-time meeting between the Golden Hurricane and Wildcats. Arizona leads the series 2-0. The two teams last met in 2001 with the Wildcats getting a 4-3 win.
Scouting the Golden Hurricanes: Tulsa is 10-1 on the season. The Hurricane has won two straight since falling to Wichita State 4-1 at home. Tulsa is led by Thalia Diaz-Barriga and partner Jie Zeng, who are ranked No. 56 in doubles. Head coach Dean Orford returns for his second year at Tulsa. The team returns six players and adds two freshmen.
Against New Mexico: This is the 15th all-time meeting between the Lobos and Wildcats. Arizona leads the series 14-0. The Wildcats took a 5-2 decision the last time the teams met in 2004.
Scouting the Lobos: New Mexico is 5-1 so far this season. Its only loss of the season came against Boise State, 5-2, last weekend. Both the Lobos and Wildcats faced Northern Arizona this season with similar results. Each team won its respective match against the Lumberjacks, 6-1. New Mexico lost its top player, All-American Iva Gersic, with a season-ending ankle injury last weekend. Gersic played at the No. 1 spot in both singles and doubles. Head coach Kathy Kolankiewicz enters her 21st season at New Mexico. The team returns nine players and adds two freshmen.
Double Trouble: Arizona has won the doubles point in six of its ten matches so far this season. The Wildcats are 5-1 when winning the point and 0-4 when their opponents take the point.
Ranked Rivals: The Wildcats have played their last eight of nine matches against ranked opponents since opening the season against unranked Northern Arizona. A total of seven of Arizona’s eight remaining opponents are ranked in the ITA poll.
Wildcats in the Rankings: The Wildcats moved up four spots in the poll this week to No. 42 despite being swept over the weekend.
Fall Action: Arizona found most of its success in doubles during the fall season. Kasia Jakowlew earned a 7-2 record in doubles while paired with Camelia Todorova (3-1) and Natalia Toporowska (4-1). Juliette Mavroleon and Danielle Steinberg went 3-0 in doubles action. Steinberg had the most success in singles play during the fall finishing at 5-3.
Pac-10 Elite: Arizona will face stiff competition when it begins the Pac-10 season. Eight of the nine conference teams are ranked in the ITA poll including five in the top 25. Stanford leads the way at No. 1. California and Southern California are close behind at No. 7 and No. 8, respectively. UCLA (No. 15) and Arizona State (No. 20) round out the top 25, while No. 39 Oregon, No. 42 Arizona and No. 56 Washington State are all also ranked. Three singles players and two doubles pairs from the Pac-10 are in the top 10 of their respective polls. Stanford’s Jessica Nguyen is ranked No. 3, while California’s Susie Babos is No. 4 and Stanford’s Celia Durkin is No. 5. Babos and teammate Zsuzsanna Fodor are No. 4 in doubles and Arizona State’s Kady Pooler and Roxanne Clarke pair up at No. 6.
Next Week: Arizona will have a week off before heading on the road to face UCLA and Southern California in non-conference play.